Luxembourg has taken a significant leap forward in embracing the digital age by implementing Directive (EU) 2019/1151, commonly referred to as the “Digitalization Directive” or “Digitalization Law.” This directive, introduced on June 20, 2019, is designed to foster digital innovation and establish a harmonized framework for electronic communication, e-commerce, and online services within the European Union. The implementation of this law in Luxembourg sets the stage for a more streamlined and efficient digital landscape, creating fresh prospects for both businesses and individuals. The Digitalization Law brings amendments to key legal frameworks such as the Luxembourg Civil Code, the law of 19 December 2002 on the trade and companies register, and the law of 10 August 1915 on commercial companies. These amendments were necessary to recognize the legal validity and effects of notarial deeds conducted in electronic format.
With the transposition of the Digitalization Directive, Luxembourg has laid the groundwork for an improved digital infrastructure. The law addresses multiple facets of the digital ecosystem, encompassing electronic communications networks and services, online platforms, and data protection. Its primary objectives include ensuring secure and reliable connectivity, promoting fair competition, and enhancing citizens’ and businesses’ access to digital services.
A notable development resulting from this development is the implementation of an electronic exchange platform exclusively dedicated to notaries. This grants them various capabilities including the preparation of legally binding documents electronically, gathering electronic signatures from all relevant parties involved in a transaction or legal process, obtaining and transmitting data to public bodies and authorities – ensuring efficient and accurate communication.
This has further led to the introduction of the option for online incorporation of certain types of Luxembourg vehicles and companies without a need for a physical presence. This online incorporation possibility is limited to sociétés anonymes (public limited companies), sociétés à responsabilité limitée (private limited companies), and sociétés en commandite par actions (partnerships limited by shares).
To comply with legal requirements, notaries sign their deeds, copies, extracts, and certifications prepared in electronic format using a qualified electronic signature or an electronic seal as defined by the eIDAS Regulation (EU Regulation 910/2014 of 23 July 2014). This measure ensures the integrity and reliability of procedures and to address any potential issues related to identity theft or fraudulent activities.
Magali Micheletti, partner from Auren Luxembourg