Minister of Justice Guido Wolf: “The Commercial Court in Stuttgart and Mannheim is our answer to the question of how complex commercial disputes can be resolved quickly and efficiently to the highest legal standard in future.”
Baden-Wuerttemberg opens the first commercial court in Germany based in Stuttgart and Mannheim. At an opening ceremony on a reduced scale due to coronavirus restrictions, Minister of Justice Guido Wolf visited the new offices at Campus Fasanenhof today (9 November 2020) and was joined by the President of the Higher Regional Court Cornelia Horz and President of the Regional Court Dr Andreas Singer to officially open the Stuttgart Commercial Court. He also presented the website of the new court.
In the words of Wolf: “The Commercial Court in Stuttgart and Mannheim is our answer to the question of how complex commercial disputes can be resolved quickly and efficiently to the highest legal standard in future. It is important that correct decisions are brought about quickly and efficiently for the sake of legal certainty, even in major commercial disputes. The Commercial Court is tailored specifically to the particularities and requirements of large-scale commercial disputes, even international ones. This is made certain by the judges’ unparalleled expertise in commercial law, the exceptionally efficient method of conducting proceedings using modern means of communication and the option of conducting a lot of the proceedings in English.”
The Stuttgart Commercial Court consists of a specialised commercial civil division and a division for commercial matters which belongs to the Regional Court of Stuttgart. The court has jurisdiction to hear large-scale commercial lawsuits at first instance, especially corporate disputes, corporate acquisitions and economically significant disputes between companies with a value in dispute of over € 2 million. In order that the entire legal dispute can be concluded quickly and to the highest standard, the Higher Regional Court of Stuttgart has an appeals panel which offers the same advantages as the court of first instance in the event that an appeal is filed.
President of the Higher Regional Court Cornelia Horz pointed out that more and more parties are opting for arbitration for major commercial disputes: “In some areas of commercial law, the law is barely being developed in Germany at the moment because cases are less frequently brought before state courts. Even the courts of arbitration share this complaint as their verdicts are naturally based on the case law of state courts. Now, the Commercial Court combines the advantages of private arbitration with the reliability, impartiality and trustworthiness of state jurisdiction to the greatest possible extent.”
Highly experienced judges with outstanding qualifications and expertise in commercial law sit in the Stuttgart Commercial Court. They all have profiles on the website. President of the Regional Court Dr Andreas Singer added: “Proceedings at the Stuttgart Commercial Court are normally conducted and arbitrated by three judges. Pooling the experience and knowledge of three judges ensures that decisions are of high quality. Where necessary, the court divisions should have the option to hear a dispute over multiple days in a row so the proceedings can be concluded promptly.”
In a video message, State Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection Dr Margaretha Sudhof spoke to those present and conveyed her best wishes for the success of the project and the people in charge of it.