The German Federal Court of Justice clarifies requirements for state liability in illegal prohibition of a merger by the Federal Competition Authority (GN Store Nord II)

The case before the Oberlandesgericht, (Higher District Court of Düsseldorf (OLG Düsseldorf)) related to a damages claim brought by Phonak against the Federal Republic of Germany based on the German rules of state liability (Section 839(1)(1) of the German Civil Code (BGB) in conjunction with Article 34 of the Grundgesetz (German Basic Law (GG)). Phonak alleged that the civil servants of the German Bundeskartellamt (Federal Cartel Authority (FCA)), committed a culpable breach of duty when they prohibited Phonak’s purchase of GN RESound, which is Danish GN Store A/S’s hearing aids business unit, in 2007 (FCA decision of 11 April 2007, B3-578-06). After the initial prohibition, Phonak abandoned the intended merger but still sought a declaratory court decision

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  • Jones Day (Brussels)

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Philipp Werner, The German Federal Court of Justice clarifies requirements for state liability in illegal prohibition of a merger by the Federal Competition Authority (GN Store Nord II), 26 March 2014, e-Competitions Bulletin March 2014, Art. N° 68839

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