Saturday, September 27, 2008

German Minister of Justice wants full equality for gay couples

On Wednesday, September 24, the German Minister of Justice, Brigitte Zypries, outlined in a speech in front of the parliament the governments plan to continue the process to fully equalize hetero- and homosexual relationships. Since the Law on Relationships (Lebenspartnerschaftsgestz) was enacted in 2001 a huge step has been done into the right direction, she said, but there are still areas that need improvement .

Zypries continued, that a modern society has to accept people from all paths of life, and that Germany in the international community has one of the more advanced laws.

Currently the Ministry of Justice is researching the possibilities to allow the adoption of children by couples who are not married in the traditional way.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Heads roll in German Bank Scandal

Heads are rolling in the wake of the scandal surrounding the transfer of €300 million ($426 million) by KfW to Lehman Brothers on the day the financial institutions collapsed.

On Thursday, September 18, the German Economics Minister Michael Glos, announced the suspension of two managing directors, Detlef Leinberger and Peter Fleischer, as well as the head of the bank's risk-management department.

KfW is a German government-owned development bank, based in Frankfurt. It name comes from Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau, meaning Reconstruction Credit Institute, and it was formed after World War II as part of the Marshall Plan. The bank is well known for lending money to small and med-sized businesses - not, to failing Wall Street firms. Business leaders as well as German politicians sit on the administrative board.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

New Legal Services Act in Force in Germany

On 1 July 2008, the Legal Services Act (Rechtsberatungsgesetz - RDG) came into force in the framework of a fundamental reform. This new law replaced the Law on Legal Counseling (RBerG), and, on the basis of a new act on reform of legal counseling, the Law on Legal Counseling ceased to have effect on that same day. The declared goal of the Legal Services Act is to protect those seeking legal recourse whilst encouraging civic engagement in the field of legal counseling through liberalization.