On February 16 2023, the Federal Ministry of Justice has published its draft to implement the EU Representative Actions Directive. The Draft law will result in a reorganisation of the German collective redress system, which has to date only been rudimentary. The core of the draft is the "Act on the Enforcement of Consumer Rights", which implements the Directive regarding a representative action for performance. Since the model declaratory action, which was only introduced in 2018, has not proven to be particularly prolific, the new representative action is intended to eliminate significant deficits of the current legal protection system.
This risks a considerable increase in the judicial assertion of consumer claims against German companies. For the first time, it will be possible for an unlimited number of consumers to file joint lawsuits against companies directly for damages in Germany.
Our detailed legal update summarises the most important aspects of the draft law, including the requirements and the procedure of the new representative action, the ways of financing as well as the effects on the limitation of claims and the disclosure duties of evidence.