Many commercial agreements and transaction documents are based on international standards so companies may with advantage involve their Danish lawyer when conducting business abroad.

Danish companies are to an increasing extent moving out into the world to operate globally. They sell their goods and services on foreign markets, conclude agreements with cooperation partners in other countries and acquire and sell businesses and participate in other major projects outside Denmark. In these situations, the transaction agreements, the cooperation or the project will often be connected with another country than Denmark, and the companies therefore typically request local legal advice.

But many commercial agreements and transaction documents are based on standards applied in countries all over the world. Therefore, they look the same no matter where in the world the agreement or transaction is negotiated.

The need for a local lawyer is therefore only required in connection with a final last check to see if there are any provisions under local law and case law that require adjustments in the agreement. Companies may therefore bring their Danish lawyers to assist them, even if the advice is given away from home.

This may be to the advantage of the company:

  • If the Danish lawyer knows the company in detail, a new lawyer abroad does not have to spend time and resources on getting to know the company's affairs, the goods/services, market conditions, acceptance of risk, etc. The Danish lawyer will speak to the foreign lawyer and provide the exact information required about the company etc. necessary to make a check of local law and case law. This will save both time and money.
  • The communication between the lawyer and the company may take place in Danish - without the risk of something being “lost in translation”. Even though communication in English is generally possible globally, there is a slight although unavoidable risk of decisive details being lost or misunderstood.

However, it is not irrelevant which Danish lawyer you team up with when it comes to international commitments. You should ensure the presence of a few but necessary conditions:

  • In addition to being a specialist within the area of the transaction, project or cooperation, it is important that the lawyer is used to working internationally with the relevant strategic and legal challenges involved. The same applies to the lawyer’s understanding of and experience in international negotiations and cultural and commercial differences, and it goes without saying that perfect mastery of legal English verbally and in writing is a requirement.
  • The Danish lawyer must have a solid network of foreign lawyers whom the Danish lawyer knows and has worked with before and can make the local check of the agreement. In this way, the Danish lawyer can ensure that the correct local lawyer is selected.

Authors

Søren Hornbæk Svendsen

Partner

Andreas Schønbeck

Director, Attorney