EU law has a huge impact on almost all sectors and businesses. In many sectors, fair competition in the internal EU market is ensured through highly detailed and complex regulations relating to market access, production processes and products and services offered on the market.

Houthoff’s EU Team has considerable experience with regulations in a wide range of areas, including REACH, regulations relating to food, biocides, and automotives, and regulated sectors such as rail travel. The team also has a thorough knowledge of substantive and institutional EU law and the fundamental freedoms of movement for goods, services, persons and capital. They advise different international manufacturers on highly specific EU regulatory aspects.

  • “Houthoff is strong in international matters. Good network, high quality.”
    Legal 500, EU and Competition (2022 Edition)
  • “Houthoff has a swift and responsive team with good sectoral knowledge. They are also very proactive in suggesting new ways of collaborations and billing.”
    Legal 500, EU and Competition (2022 Edition)
  • “The Houthoff team is very knowledgeable and all-round which enables them to serve as our “one-stop-shop.”
    Legal 500, EU and Competition (2022 Edition)
  • “The team is very supportive and responsive, meeting all of our needs. The team is very meticulous in all of its legal analysis and focused on preparing for important court filings well ahead of time.”
    Legal 500, EU and Competition (2022 Edition)
  • “The lawyers have knowledge of the market and will be able to give you the pragmatic advice needed.”
    Chambers Europe, Competition/European Law (2020 Edition)
  • “A client describes the team as ‘accurate, fast delivering and proactive.’”
    Chambers Europe, Competition/European Law (2020 Edition)
  • “Excellent expertise in the field of European law and good contacts with the European Commission.”
    Legal 500, EU and Competition (2020 Edition)
  • “Clients value the ‘tailor-made solutions’ provided, alongside the team’s ‘holistic approach’ and ‘commercial understanding.’”      
    Chambers Europe, Competition/European Law (2019 Edition)
  • “They are really good at immediately identifying the problems and coming up with practical solutions.”
    Chambers Europe, Competition/European Law (2019 Edition)
  • “Praised for its ‘sound industry knowledge and professionalism’ Houthoff’s team further stands out for its ‘specific industry knowledge and high-quality associates.’”
    Legal 500, EU and Competition (2019 Edition)
Our EU Team combines its thorough knowledge of EU law with extensive experience in representing clients before the European Commission and litigating in the EU courts (European Court of Justice and the General Court of the European Union). As such, the team's members regularly advise on presenting EU law arguments in national proceedings. The EU Team was, for example, involved in the national test case by Nationale Nederlanden that resulted in a preliminary ruling procedure before the ECJ.

Clients engage our EU Team when they discover unfair competition resulting from the incorrect application or interpretation of EU law or national protective measures. These could include discriminatory taxes or other obstacles to the free movement of goods, such as branded products or medications.

Our EU Team can be relied on for effective involvement in the decision-making processes of the EU institutions, and the effective exercise of rights arising under EU law in national or EU legal proceedings.
  • Represented Ola Cabs in data access request proceedings before the Amsterdam District Court. This was the first judgment by an EU court on data portability.
  • Advised Platinum Equity on Landal GreenParks' sale to Roompot.
  • Advising on the establishment of internet pharmacies including various regulatory and competition aspects of internet sales of pharmaceutical products.
  • Advising university medical centres in public tender procedures for IT and electronic medical files.
  • Advising both public bodies and large construction companies on state aid rules in relation to contracts for the realisation of various prestigious projects. In many cases, the financial impact of the application of the state aid rules in the concerned multimillion projects can be considerable.
  • Advising pharmaceutical wholesale companies on various regulatory aspects of the distribution of pharmaceuticals and medical devices including the notification, packaging/labelling requirements and CE-marking.
  • Advising public bodies and renowned companies on the state aid rules applicable to the roll-out of broadband, environmental taxes, sustainable energy, major regional investment projects and agriculture.
  • Assisted the AMC and VUmc hospitals in obtaining the required approval from the Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (ACM) for an administrative merger. The approval enables the two Amsterdam-based university medical centres to cooperate on patient care, research, education and training without limitation. This will create the biggest university medical centre in the Netherlands.
  • Representing Total in a follow-on damage claim.
  • Houthoff is representing the association of realtors, VBO Makelaar, in ongoing civil proceedings before the court of Amsterdam against Funda. Funda is the largest online real estate portal in the Netherlands and a subsidiary of the largest association of realtors in the Netherlands, NVM. The case is one of the few Dutch cases based on abuse of dominance. The case revolves around discriminatory practices by Funda to the detriment of VBO Makelaar's members.
  • Representing Nationale-Nederlanden, a major insurance company in a preliminary procedure (case C-51/13) before the EU Court. The case concerns questions from the Rotterdam court on the interpretation of EU directives on the life insurance sector and more specifically the pre-contractual information requirements imposed on insurers. The EU Court has ruled in favour of Nationale-Nederlanden.
  • Represented of the municipality of Eindhoven in the formal investigation of the European Commission on presumed state aid to footballclub PSV.

Key Contact

Advocaat | Partner
+31 20 605 61 83
+31 6 5365 5833

Key Contact

Advocaat | Partner
+32 2 507 98 13
+32 4 7394 8686
Greetje van Heezik

Key Contact

Advocaat | Counsel
+32 2 507 98 10
+32 4 7586 8593