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Sub practice
Sub practice

Product Stewardship

The international trade in, and marketing of, products is subject to growing regulatory burdens.

Legislators around the world are increasingly taking a product-centred approach to environmental protection, imposing obligations on manufacturers, distributors, importers, users and disposers to reduce the environmental impacts of products, from the sourcing of raw materials to the management at their end-of life stage. Members of our International Environment, Climate and Regulatory Law Group are well-placed to advise on all aspects of this cycle.

Our product liability practice provides strategic advice and practical assistance to all operators in the supply chain, covering a wide range of products, including industrial equipment, automotives, medical devices, electronic equipment and other consumer goods.

We are involved at all stages of the production and marketing chain, from regulatory compliance at the strategic planning stage, to product labelling issues (including CE marking) and product liability risk assessments. We also assist clients with the regulatory impact of product misuse and product health and safety issues such as exposure to asbestos or other hazardous content.

We support clients on the practical impacts of regulatory enforcement action, including product investigations, recall, litigation, toxic torts and the associated reputational issues.

We have established global product teams dealing specifically with producer responsibility and product liability issues, who help our clients ensure compliance with all relevant legislation and managing product risks - enabling them to do business across the globe.

We also focus on trade and export controls enabling our clients to understand and comply with the complex challenges of operating within the ever expanding international trade sanctions.

Topics on which we routinely advise include:

  • product safety and recall
  • managing supply chains, sales channels, logistics and customer disputes
  • RoHS and WEEE directives, including the chemical content of products
  • China RoHS
  • Batteries Directive
  • U.S. and European sanctions, exemptions and approvals
  • dual-use product restrictions
  • medical devices
  • U.S. conflict minerals legislation
  • scoping and implementing due diligence on supply chains
  • drafting and negotiating product supply terms and associated compliance certifications and warranties
  • U.S. rules on e-waste and substance restrictions
  • EMC requirements
  • EuP Directive and implementing measures
  • waste shipment regulations
  • carriage of dangerous goods and substances
  • packaging requirements
  • developing compliance plans and strategies
  • carrying out product registrations and certifications
  • market surveillance initiatives
  • product liability

News & insights

Columns

Publications: 14 JUNE 2021

Access to environmental justice in Flanders in light of the Aarhus Regulation review: Contradiction or alignment?

Recently, the Flemish Government published a proposal amending the functioning of inter alia the Council for Permit Disputes (a regional administrative court), which also has procedural ramifications…

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A solar energy panel reflecting sunlight

News: 18 MAY 2021

A&O takes part in €100m green fund by EIB-SBI to support climate action in India

Allen & Overy took part in establishing Neev Fund II, a joint commitment by the State Bank of India and the European Investment Bank to support climate action in India.

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View of a city

Publications: 13 MAY 2021

Sustainability linked lending in the leveraged finance market

Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) matters have long been a talking point in the leveraged finance market, but the end of 2020 and the first few months of 2021 have seen deal flow take off for…

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Red carpeted walk way/bridge inside building with glass meeting rooms

Publications: 11 MAY 2021

Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive

An EU-wide sustainability reporting standard has been proposed by the European Commission ahead of a possible new international reporting standard on sustainability. The EU proposals expand the scope…

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Recognition