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April 27, 2024

Interviews

Full reference: E. Silva-Romero, "Droit de la Compliance : Arbitrage International et géopolitique" ("Compliance Law: International Arbitration and Geopolitics"), interview conducted by M.-A. Frison-Roche as part of a series of interviews on Compliance Law, in Fenêtres ouvertes sur la gestion (Open windows on management), broadcast by J.-Ph. Denis, Xerfi Canal, recorded December 12, 2023, recorded April 27, 2024

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🌐consult the presentation of Eduardo Silva-Romero's interview on LinkedIn

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🎥view the full interview on Xerfi Canal

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Starting point: In 2023, Eduardo Silva-Romero wrote a contribution:📝What place is there for compliance in investment arbitration?, in the book 📘Compliance Jurisdictionalisation

🧱read the presentation of this contribution ➡️click HERE

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Summary of interview:

Marie-Anne Frison-Roche. Question: What is the place of Compliance in international investment arbitration and, first of all, what is its specificity?

 

Edouardo Silva-Romero. Answer: International investment arbitration is based on a treaty, generally signed between two States, which agree to protect the investments that companies make in the host State. The resulting disputes may give rise to this specific type of arbitration.

 

Compliance has a special place here, because if the investment is tainted by corruption or fails to respect human rights, it will not be protected by the arbitrators, as the host state is no longer bound.

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MaFR. Q.: So, through Compliance, states can assert their sovereignty?

 

E.S-R. A.: Yes, through the social dimension of Compliance, States can assert their social conception and impose it in investment arbitration.

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MaFR. Q.: Is the attractiveness of the Paris marketplace enhanced?

 

E.S-R. A.: The International Court of Arbitration is headquartered in Paris, and it's clear that this presence, combined with Compliance's humanistic approach to investment arbitration, is an essential element of attractiveness. Because of the technicalities involved, it is essential for international arbitrators to master compliance law in order to participate in this new element of attractiveness, as it takes the form of rules of public order, and this is also how the Paris Court of Appeal exercises its control over awards.

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April 26, 2024

Organization of scientific events

 Référence complète : La vigilance, nouveau champ de contentieux systémiquein cycle de conférences-débats "Contentieux Systémique Émergent", organisé à l'initiative de la Cour d'appel de Paris, avec la Cour de cassation, la Cour d'appel de Versailles, l'École nationale de la magistrature (ENM) et l'École de formation des barreaux du ressort de la Cour d'appel de Paris (EFB), sous la responsabilité scientifique de Marie-Anne Frison-Roche, 26 avril 2024, 11h-12h30, Cour d'appel de Paris, salle Massé

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🧮consulter le programme complet du cycle Contentieux Systémique Émergent

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🌐consulter sur LinkedIn le compte-rendu de cette manifestation

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► Présentation de la conférence : Le devoir de vigilance imposé par la loi de 2017 se contractualise, soit par des contrats ad hoc, soit par des stipulations qui reproduisent les dispositions légales, les aménagent ou les dépassent. Cette reprise par le Droit des obligations est précieuse mais n’est pas sans risque. La portée systémique de la loi sous-jacente d’une part et des structures économiques d’autre part, l’entreprise ou la chaîne de valeur, va imprégner le contentieux. L’exemple des relations de travail est instructif à ce titre.

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🧮Programme de cette manifestation : 

Deuxième conférence-débat

LA VIGILANCE, NOUVEAU CHAMP DE CONTENTIEUX SYSTÉMIQUE

Cour d’appel de Paris, salle Massé

Présentation et modération par 🕴️François Ancel, Haut Conseiller à la Première Chambre civile de la Cour de cassation

🕰️11h-11h20. 🎤Le contentieux émergent de la Vigilance dans les rapports contractuels, par 🕴️Jean-Christophe Roda, Professeur à l’Université Jean-Moulin Lyon 3

🕰️11h20-11h40. 🎤Le contentieux émergent de la Vigilance dans les relations de travail, par 🕴️Cyril Cosme, Directeur du Bureau de l'OIT pour la France

🕰️11h40-12h30. Débat

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🔴Les inscriptions et renseignements se font à l’adresse : inscriptionscse@gmail.com

🔴Pour les avocats, les inscriptions se font à l’adresse suivante : https://evenium.events/cycle-de-conferences-contentieux-systemique-emergent/ 

⚠️Les conférences-débat se tiennent en présentiel à la Cour d’appel de Paris.

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Updated: April 24, 2024 (Initial publication: Dec. 15, 2023)

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 Full ReferenceM.-A. Frison-Roche, Duty of vigilance: the way forward, Working Paper, 2023.

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🎤 This working paper has been drawn up to serve as a basis for the conclusions of the colloquium Le devoir de vigilance: l'âge de la maturité? ("The duty of vigilance: the age of maturity?") organised by the University of Montpellier on 25 May 2023.

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📝 Updated and developed, it serves as the basis for the article that concludes the book Le devoir de vigilance des entreprises : l'âge de la maturité? ("The duty of vigilance: the age of maturity?"), Editions Bruylant, 2024.

 

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 Working Paper summary: In 2017 in France the so-called Vigilance law expressed great ambition. So did the draft directive. But in 2024 the European institutions moderated this ambition by refusing to increase either the type of companies subject and the constraints to which the duty of vigilance is associated. The directive has essentially halted what was for some the "march of progress". Does the ambition no longer exist? Does the future lie in an extension of the philosophy of the duty of vigilance, i.e. companies that should always be more concerned about others? This would undoubtedly be reaching the "age of maturity", where others see the age of madness, because it would be a contradiction in terms to ask a company to be concerned about anything other than its own development.

It is therefore appropriate to consider this very hypothesis of an "age of maturity" as being an ambition maintained despite a European directive which, in its adopted version, is weakened and while the oppositions are intact (I). First of all, it must be admitted that the notion of "maturity" most often conceals a value judgment when applied to a legal concept (I.A.) and that this is blatantly obvious with regard to the duty of vigilance, which is considered by some and by nature by some as a good and by others as an evil (I.B).

In order not to remain in what appears to be trench warfare, we must not get too bogged down in the reference French legislation of 2017 and what appears to be a European stutter in 2024, arguing so loudly that we can hear them reasoning in print, by paying attention to less visible and now more promising avenues of progress (II). In fact, the duty of vigilance can progress simply by the passage of time (II.A), by a better definition of the vocabulary (II.B), by the consolidation of the principles of Responsibility and Dialogue (II.C), by the uniqueness of the jurisdictional route (II.D).

This last perspective of the progress that will be made possible in France by the uniqueness of the judicial route leads to a final avenue of progress. By their very nature, laws are jolts, all the more violent for being disputed. At the moment, if we want to make progress, these two other sources - the contract and the judge - must be favoured (III). The European directive is rightly concerned with access to the courts and takes a measured view of the effectiveness of contracts as a means of making the duty of vigilance effective, with the courts having to ensure that the contract does not destroy the spirit of the system. This is what the law already organises about the relationship between the contract, the judge and the duty of compliance (III.A). What is new in Europe in 2024 is the introduction of a Supervisor (III.B). Here again, vigilance is the "cutting edge" of Compliance Law, as it is an extension of Regulatory Law. 

The result is that, through interpretation and the handling of principles, and to formulate a more general conclusion, it is the judge who holds and will hold the balance of the duty of vigilance.

 

 

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🔓read the Working Paper below⤵️

April 18, 2024

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 Full referenceM.-A. Frison-Roche, "L’usage des puissances privées par le droit de la compliance pour servir les droits de l’homme" (Use of private companies by Compliance Law to serve Human Rights) in J. Andriantsimbazovina (dir.), Puissances privées et droits de l'Homme. Essai d'analyse juridique, Mare Martin,  coll. "Horizons européens", 2024, pp. 279-295

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🚧read the  Bilingual Working Paper on which this article is based, with more technical developments, references and hypertext links

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► English Summary of this article: Following the legal tradition, Law creates a link between power with a legitimate source, the State, public power being its prerogative, while private companies exercise their power only in the shadow of this public power exercised ex ante.  The triviality of Economic Law, of which Competition Law is at the heart, consisting of the activity of companies that use their power on markets, relegates the action of the State to the rank of an exception, admissible if the State, which claims to exercise this contrary power, justifies it.  The distribution of roles is thus reversed, in that the places are exchanged, but the model of opposition is shared. This model of opposition exhausts the forces of the organisations, which are relegated to being the exception. However, if we want to achieve great ambitions, for example to give concrete reality to human rights beyond the legal system within which the public authorities exercise their normative powers, we must rely on a new branch of Law, remarkable for its pragmatism and the scope of the ambitions, including humanist ambitions, that it embodies: Compliance Law.

Compliance Law is thus the branch of Law which makes the concern for others, concretised by human rights, borne by the entities in a position to satisfy it, that is to say the systemic entities, of which the large companies are the direct subjects of law (I). The result is a new division between Public Authorities, legitimate to formulate the Monumental Goal of protecting human beings, and private organisations, which adjust to this according to the type of human rights and the means put in place to preserve them. Corporations are sought after because they are powerful, in that they are in a position to make human rights a reality, in their indifference to territory, in the centralisation of Information, technologies and economic, human, and financial means. This alliance is essential to ensure that the system does not lead to a transfer of political choices from Public Authorities to private companies; this alliance leads to systemic efficiency. The result is a new definition of sovereignty as we see it taking shape in the digital space, which is not a particular sector since it is the world that has been digitalised, the climate issue justifying the same new distribution of roles (II). 

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📝read the article (in French)

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April 8, 2024

Public Auditions

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 Full referenceM.-A. Frison-Roche, Audition by the French National Assembly's Law Commission on the confidentiality of legal advice  (the "Legal Privilege à la française"), 8 April 2024.

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I had expressed my opinion on the need for French legal system to better ensure the confidentiality of legal opinions drawn up by internal lawyers in companies, in an article published in 2023 in the French academic journal Recueil Dalloz: "La compliance, socle de la confidentialité nécessaire des avis juridiques élaborés en entreprise (Compliance Law, the cornerstone of the necessary confidentiality of legal opinions drawn up by companies". Compliance, the cornerstone of the necessary confidentiality of legal opinions drawn up by companies). 

Following on from this article, and as a specialist in Regulatory and Compliance Law, I was invited by the French National Assembly's Law Commission to give my opinion on the proposed law n°2022 on the confidentiality of consultations by in-house lawyers ( Proposition de loi n°2022 relative à la confidentialité des consultations des juristes d'entreprises), often named in French Legal privilege à la française.

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► Summary of this presentation: I have shown that we must start not from the person (external lawyer / in-house lawyer, for instance) and not even centrally from the information in question (branch of Law by branch of Law), but from the Goals pursued, i.e. from Compliance Law.

In this respect, we must not be misled. We could do so by confusing mechanical "conformity" with this new branch of Law: Compliance Law. Conformity is merely a tool of Compliance Law. Out of concern for the correct use of the French language, as "Compliance" appears to many to be an American term, the proposed law uses the term "conformité" but refers to Compliance Law. Conformity" is merely the mechanical obligation to obey the applicable rules, which is the fate of any subject of law, subject to the mandatory rules, a passive position common to everyone in a State governed by the Rule of Law.

Compliance Law is quite different, with conformity being just one of its tools. On the one hand, Compliance Law imposes an active obligation, and on the other, it targets only certain legal subjects: companies.  For them, it is a matter of ensuring that certain goals set by the legislator are actually achieved, which becomes effectively and efficiently possible thanks to the power of companies (financial power, organizational power, management power, information power, location power, information power). These "Monumental Goals" are either negative (preventing systems from collapsing) or positive (ensuring that systems improve).

For companies to play this role - a role that is not required of other "ordinary" people, as they are not "in a position" to take on such a burden, particularly in terms of finance and organization - those in charge of organizing themselves and taking action, i.e. companies, must "detect and prevent" system failures (as required by laws such as US FCPA, French so-called Sapin 2 and Vigilance laws, European CSRD and CS3D, etc.). To "detect and prevent", which is an order from the Legislator, companies need to know the weaknesses of their organization and of the people they answer to, in order to remedy them: "remediation" is a "remedy" to ensure the "sustainability" of "systems".

This set of key concepts lies at the heart of Compliance Law, the branch of law That focuses on the future.

It is the legal opinions, for example, and in particular the report resulting from internal investigations, that enable those who decide and control this organization (the managers) to fulfill the role entrusted to them by the State. If these opinions are not confidential, the result is not the remediation and preservation of global systems (competitive, climatic, digital, energy, banking, financial systems, etc.): the effective managerial solution in Ex-Ante then consists not in seeking information but, conversely, in not seeking this information, since obtaining it will lead to the weakening of the company through the sanction that the information produces, for lack of confidentiality.

The interests of the system, the State and the company are disjointed, because Compliance Law implies their alliance, which is what the confidentiality of legal opinions produces.

This is why Compliance Law must, by its very nature, ensure the confidentiality of legal advice.

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When asked about the actual text of the proposal, I felt that the explanatory memorandum was particularly relevant, since the link between Compliance Law (admittedly called "conformité" in the proposed bill by a rather too mechanical respect for the French legal language, from which the French legislator has so far been unable to dispense....) is clear, that this confidentiality is attached to the document, that the company can waive it, and that it is clearly distinct from professional secrecy, all three of which should be approved.

For my part, I've suggested a change to the procedure, which must be open to the confidentiality process.

Indeed, public authorities, such as Competition and Regulatory Authorities, are rather hostile to this confidentiality.

Having contributed a great deal to the development of Regulatory Law, and continuing to do so, I believe that Competition and Regulatory Authorities have a logic that needs to be understood. It is as follows: Regulatory Authorities are Ex-Ante (this was less true for the Competition Authorities, but it too is increasingly so) and are in a situation of information asymmetry. Their first concern is to combat this asymmetry. If we translate this into legal terms, it means that in order to carry out their mission of general interest, they must seek out all available information. However, legal opinions, and in particular the internal investigation report, are what I have described as "evidence treasure". In their logic, the Competition and Regulatory Authorities want to seize it.

There is therefore a conflict between two general interest logics: the general interest of the Monumental Goals of Compliance Law actively served by companies, at the behest of the Legislation, which requires the confidentiality of legal opinions, and the general interest of the action of Regulators who fight against information asymmetry and seek to seize the evidential treasures of legal opinions.

For the reasons given above, I believe that the Monumental Goals of Compliance must prevail. All the more so as the rights of the defence converge to this end.

Ultimately, however, it is up to the Judge, in the event of open conflict, to balance these two claims, which are based on the service of the general interest. 

However, reading the proposition, it seems to me that the rather complicated procedure entrusts this to a multiplicity of judges... But since it is indeed Compliance Law which is the best basis for "legal privilege à la française", Compliance Law, which is the extension of Regulatory Law and whose advanced point is the Vigilance duty, it would be more appropriate and logical to entrust this litigation to the exclusive jurisdiction of the Paris Judicial Court. This court has already the exclusive competence for litigation about Vigilance.

This would have another fortunate effect: on appeal, the dispute would be brought before the Paris Court of Appeal, which has exclusive jurisdiction (barring exceptions) over disputes concerning decisions on French Competition and Regulatory Authorities. The judges of the "Pôle 5" (12 chambers specializing in economic law) of the very specific court are seasoned and would be well-suited to strike the necessary balance between the two general interests involved.

I think a procedural amendment to the proposed text along these lines would be welcome.

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► See in my work those that may be of interest with regard to this hearing (all with English summary, many with bilingual working paper) ⤵️

 

🕴️M.-A. Frison-Roche, 📝Le rôle du juge dans le déploiement du Droit de la Régulation par le Droit de la Compliancein 📗Conseil d'État et Cour de cassation, De la Régulation à la Compliance : quel rôle pour le Juge ?2024.  

🕴️M.-A. Frison-Roche, 📝Compliance et conformité : les distinguer pour mieux les articuler, 2024.

🕴️M.-A. Frison-Roche (dir.),📕L'obligation de compliance, 2024.

🕴️M.-A. Frison-Roche et M. Boissavy (dir.), 📕Compliance et droits de la défense, 2024.

🕴️M.-A. Frison-Roche (dir.), 📕Compliance et droits de la défenseLes Buts Monumentaux de la compliance,  2022.

🕴️M.-A. Frison-Roche, 📝Contrat de compliance, clauses de compliance, 2022.

🕴️M.-A. Frison-Roche, 📝Le Droit de la compliance, 2016.

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April 4, 2024

Publications

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 Full ReferenceM.-A. Frison-Roche, "Le rôle du juge dans le déploiement du droit de la régulation par le droit de la compliance" ("Synthesis: The role of the Judge in the deployment of Regulatory Law through Compliance Law"), Synthesis in Conseil d'État (French Council of State) and Cour de cassation (French Court of cassation), De la régulation à la compliance : quel rôle pour le juge ? Regards croisés du Conseil d'Etat et de la Cour de cassation - Colloque du 2 juin 2023, La Documentation française, "Droits et Débats" Serie, 2024, pp. 173-182

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🎥this article follows the closing speech of the biannual symposium organised by the Council of State and the Court of cassation, which in 2023 was entitled De la régulation à la compliance : quel rôle pour le juge ? (From Regulation to Compliance, what role for the judge ?)

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🚧read the bilingual Working Paper which is the basis of this article, with additional developments, technical references and hyperlinks

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 Presentation of this concluding article: It is remarkable to note the unity of conception and practice between professionals who tend to work in administrative jurisdictions and professionals who tend to work in judicial jurisdictions: they all note, in similar terms, an essential movement: what Regulatory Law is, how it has been transformed into Compliance Law, and how in one and even more so in the other the Judge is at the centre of it.

Judges, as well as Regulators and European officials, explain this and use different examples to illustrate the far-reaching changes it brings to the Law and to the companies responsible for increasing the systemic effectiveness of the rules through the practice and dissemination of a Culture of Compliance.

The role of the judge participating in this Ex Ante transformation is renewed, whether he/she is a judge of Public Law or a judge of Private Law, in a greater unity of the legal system.

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► English Summary of this article: The tug-of-war between 'Compliance' and 'conformity', which is exhausting us, obscures what is essential, i.e. the great novelty of a branch of law that assumes a humanist vision expressing the ambition to shape the future so that it is not catastrophic (preventing systems from collapsing), or even better (protecting human beings in these systems).

The article begins by describing the emergence of Compliance Law, as an extension of Regulatory Law and going beyond it. This new branch of law takes account of our new world, brings its benefits and seeks to counter these systemic dangers so that human beings could be their beneficiaries and are not crushed by them. This branch of Ex Ante Law is therefore political, often supported by public Authorities, such as Regulatory Authorities, but today it goes beyond sectors, as shown by its cutting edge, the Obligation of Vigilance.

The "Monumental Goals" in which Compliance Law is normatively anchored imply a teleological interpretation, leading to an "empowerment" of the crucial operators, not only States but also companies, responsible for the effectiveness of the many new Compliance Tools.

The article goes on to show that Judges are increasingly central to Compliance Law. Lawsuits are designed to make companies more accountable. In this transformation, the role of the judge is also to remain the guardian of the Rule of Law, both in the protection of the rights of the defence and in the protection of secrets. Efficiency is not what defines Compliance, which should not be reduced to a pure and simple method of efficiency, which would lead to being an instrument of dictatorship. This is why the principle of Proportionality is essential in the judge's review of the requirements arising from this so powerful branch of Law. 

The courts are thus faced with a new type of dispute, of a systemic nature, in their own area, which must not be distorted: the Area of Justice.

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📝read article (in French)

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April 2, 2024

Conferences

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 Full ReferenceM.-A. Frison-Roche, "Les voies d'innovations juridiques face aux nouveaux "défis climatiques" ("Innovative legal solutions to the new "climate challenges""), in C. Arnaud, O. de Bandt et B. Deffains (dir.), Nouveaux défis - Regards croisés : Droit, Économie et Finance. Quel Droit face au Changement Climatique ? (("New challenges - Crossed perspectives : Law, Economics and Finance. What Law in the Face of Climate Change?"), Banque de France (French Central Bank) and CRED/Paris Panthéon-Assas University, Paris, Centre de Conférence de la Banque de France, April 2, 2024

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🧮See the full programme of this event

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🔲see the slides, basis of this conference (in French)

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 Summary of this conference: In response to the question of how the Law can produce 'innovations' to meet the 'climate challenges', the process is based on the three traditional sources of Law, which are, firstly, laws and regulations, secondly, the commitments of individuals, mainly contracts, and thirdly, court rulings.

At first sight, the Law in its traditional conception and practice is weak in the face of climate change. This weakness is inherent in the nature of climate change, which is at once future, global and systemic, in the face of these three sources of Law, which do not address all three dimensions at once. The scale of the legal innovation required to ensure that one or more articulated sources can grasp the future, the global and the systemic is therefore clear. And yet this is what is happening.

As far as laws and regulations are concerned, they do not seem very appropriate because they are, by their very nature, a territorial limit, and international treaties are very difficult to negotiate. The interweaving of European regulations, for example the CSRD and the CS3D, which mirror each other, may be more effective. As far as 'commitments' are concerned, a concept which in Law is not very precise outside of contracts and liability cases📎!footnote-3568, contracts are above all a means for companies to fulfill their legal obligations, and a contract always implies a judge. At first sight, however, the judge is the least well placed to respond to 'climate challenges', particularly in France where he is said or wished to be powerless, where he rules on the past and where, especially the civil judge, he settles a one-off dispute between two singular parties.

But a major change has occurred with the emergence of a new branch of law: the Compliance Law, a teleological branch of Law whose legal normativity is lodged in the Monumental Goals📎!footnote-3572 that it pursues, namely the preservation of systems, for example the climate system. In France, the so-called "Sapin 2" law in 2016, followed by the so-called "Vigilance" law in 2017, illustrate this. And the Judge is at the centre of it all.

In this global, systemic, extraterritorial perspective, the object of which is the future - Compliance Law is, moreover, rejected by many legal experts - the legislative innovation is major. Indeed, the law of 23 March 2017, known as "Vigilance" designated large companies, because they are "powerful", because they are "in a position to act" to "detect and prevent" breaches of the environment and human rights. The 2017 law copied the "compliance tools"📎!footnote-3573 put in place by the Sapin 2 anti-corruption law: risk mapping, plans, alerts, audits, internal investigations, and so on. 

Only large companies are subject to the Compliance Law, notably the Vigilance Law, since they are the only ones in a position to act, in this case "parent companies or principals", and borders are no longer limits since the obligation, creating personal liability for the company📎!footnote-3574, extends throughout the "value chain". The notion and fact of "systemic dispute" is emerging before the courts. In France, the Paris Court of First Instance has exclusive jurisdiction. European legislation is proving more difficult to draw up, because although it is compulsory to provide information on these "extra-financial" subjects (CSRD), the directive on the duty of vigilance, which has just been adopted, does not go any further than the French law of 2017.

On the second point, that of commitments, we are only at the beginning. Judges do not transform ethical statements into "unilateral legal commitments", and vigilance does not transform company law into co-management. But contracts do form a global network through which companies adjust their various legal obligations. This is why arbitrators, the only "global judges", will soon be involved in this systemic litigation📎!footnote-3575, and more general case law is to come on "compliance contracts and clauses"📎!footnote-3576.

But the most innovative aspect undoubtedly comes from the courts. Perhaps and notably in France because it is from where we least expect it, the civil courts, that the imagination comes, but also the guarding of the great principles of the Rule of Law, because for the moment the case law is reasonable. This innovation has not come about proprio motu: the judges are not taking action, it is the NGOs that are conducting a kind of litigation policy, systematically giving formal notice to the major energy companies, but also to the major banks and insurers on climate issues, alleging non-compliance with their vigilance plans. The interim relief judge at the Paris Court of First Instance must then provide answers in systemic disputes, of which the so-called "Total Uganda"📎!footnote-3577 case is an example.

The courts are demonstrating a great deal of innovation. The Court of First Instance's interim relief judge has appointed amici curiae📎!footnote-3569, the Paris Court of Appeal has set up a specialised chamber📎!footnote-3570, and training conferences have been set up on this "Emerging Systemic Litigation"📎!footnote-3571.

In conclusion, Law is in the process of being rebuilt through a new branch of Law, Compliance Law, whose the very purpose, as an extension of and going beyond Regulatory Law📎!footnote-3578, is to preserve systems, in particular the climate system, in a profoundly renewed role for judges📎!footnote-3580.

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March 29, 2024

Conferences

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 Full ReferenceM.-A. Frison-Roche, "L’émergence du Contentieux Systémique" ("Emergence of the Systemic Litigation"), in Importance et spécificité du Contentieux Systémique Émergent (Importance and specificity of the Emerging Systemic Litigation)in cycle of conferences-debates "Contentieux Systémique Émergent" ("Emerging Systemic Litigation"), organised on the initiative of the Cour d'appel de Paris (Paris Cour of Appeal), with the Cour de cassation (French Court of cassation), the Cour d'appel de Versailles (Versailles Court of Appeal), the École nationale de la magistrature - ENM (French National School for the Judiciary) and the École de formation des barreaux du ressort de la Cour d'appel de Paris - EFB (Paris Bar School), under the scientific direction of Marie-Anne Frison-Roche, March 29, 2024, 11h-12h30, Cour d'appel de Paris, salle Masse

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🧮see the full programme of this event

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🧮see the programme of the entire cycle Contentieux Systémique Émergent

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🌐consult on LinkedIn the report of this speech (in French)

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🌐consult on LinkedIn a general présentation of this event, which links to a presentation and a report of each speech (in French)

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🧱consult the scientific coordination sheet of this event, which gives an account of the various speeches made

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🔲see the slides used to support this intervention (in French)

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🚧read the bilingual Working Paper which is the basis of this speech

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 English Summary of the conference: We are seeing the emergence of what should be referred to as a category of its own: the "Systemic Litigation". This concept, proposed in 2021📎!footnote-3521, refers to the hypothesis in which a system is 'involved' in a particular 'case' submitted to the judge. The presence of a system should not be confused with a systemic analysis of a phenomenon. The term 'cause' must be understood in the procedural sense, as used in article 5 of the Code civil (French Civil Code). Specifically, the prohibition contained in article 5 of the French Civil Code does not apply because a system thus involved calls for factual responses and solutions and not necessarily general and abstract solutions: the solution of a systemic nature and scope, that the presence of a system in a cause calls for, may be a factual solution, even if it radiates out from the system as a whole. But precisely because the presence of a system in the case often gives rise to a question that is itself systemic, the judge, if he wishes to comply with article 4 of the French Civil Code, must respond not only a minima by not evading the question, for example of systemic risks, but also fully by providing systemic solutions, for example remedies to preserve in the future the solidity and durability of the systems involved in the case. 

 

These systems may be of different kinds: banking, financial, transport, health, energy, digital, algorithmic or climatic. Their presence in cases brought to the attention of judges, the variety and difficulties of which will be seen in later contributions, leads to basic questions relating to the emergence of Systemic Litigation: firstly, how can Systemic Litigation be defined? Secondly, what makes this category of litigation emerge? The answers to these two questions have essential practical consequences. 

The new solutions must be based on a classic distinction, used in particular in criminal and administrative proceedings, which are more objective, but also in civil proceedings, notably by Hébraud, namely the distinction between the "party to the dispute/litigation" and the "party to the proceedings". Depending on whether it is accepted that the system should be considered as a "party to the litigation", which would allow it, through an entity that is legitimate in expressing it, to allege claims and formulate demands against an adversary, or as a "party to the proceedings", a much broader category, which would allow the judge to hear the interests of the systems involved without individuals being able, on behalf of a system, to formulate claims against or for the benefit of a party to the litigation.

 

 

This makes it possible to innovate while preserving the measure of which the judge is the guardian.

 

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