The work on compliance covers a broad spectrum: from fundamental HSE requirements and regulations regarding how a financial undertaking’s office building must be designed, to the labelling of technology-enabled products. It’s about finding and analysing the rules and enabling the company to apply them in practice. The rules often affect several levels. A technology-enabled product is an example of this, where the choice between alternative requirements will depend on the interpretation of industry standards, which in turn depends on technical regulations that are effectively implemented by EU law. This means that the answer will ultimately depend on the interpretation of the directive and a review of the guidelines.
Examples of cases Harris has worked on include:
- Implementation of and compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
- Employee protection, corruption, etc. On behalf of an import business, assessing requirements with regard to the protection of employees, corruption, etc. Evaluated the ILO Conventions (the 8 basic conventions, checked against the 182 others), the UN Convention and the OECD’s recommendations regarding corruption etc.
- Which regulations a company must be aware of when “the boss is out of action”
- Investigation of near accidents with significant damage potential
- HSE requirements. On behalf of a manufacturing company, evaluated whether access to a large machine was legally sound. Officially, this is based on the machinery regulations (which is partly pursuant to the Product Control Act), but clarification required analysis of the current Norsk Standard (Norwegian standards) (the NS-EN series) and Guide to application of the Machinery Directive which underpins the machinery regulations
- CE labelling of products. Reviewed the regulations: machinery regulations, the current Norsk Standard (Norwegian standards) (the NS-EN series) and Guide to application of the Machinery Directive
- Hazardous products. Review registration requirements (declarations) before the chemicals/substances are used/imported. This was done against the regulations on hazardous chemicals of 2002, the Product Control Act and the REACH Regulation (Regulation (EC) No 1907/2006 on the registration, evaluation, authorisation and restriction of chemicals and on establishing a European chemicals agency)
- Ground contamination. Assessing heavy metal pollution from several mass landfills established by the implementation of a major road project. This was done against the regulatory requirements, decisions by the authorities and pollution legislation
- Organisation of activities. On behalf of a financial institution, assessing which businesses could be pursued within current legislation and licensing. The legislation is characterised by activities that are either subject to an application process or not, with a special application required to combine certain activities. Examined financial legislation, which among other things includes a very large number of detailed regulations and established EU law.
- Which licences are required for various business models. On behalf of a technology (IT) company, evaluated whether and how different technical solutions would impose requirements on the capital base and licensing in accordance with financial institutions legislation, which is largely implemented EU law.
At Harris, attorney (H) Pål Magne Bakka and attorney Gerd Fagerli are our contacts. Bakka has extensive expertise in EU law and represents various companies and public-sector organisations. Fagerli heads up Harris Law Firm’s internal compliance work and has experience from previous roles in the Norwegian Directorate of Fisheries and DNB. She primarily represents companies from the aquaculture industry but also from other sectors.