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New technologies, spearheaded by artificial intelligence, are shaping the legal dialogue surrounding innovation, consumer protection, and the integrity of market competition within Hungary and the European Union as a whole according to KCG Partners Founding Partner Rita Parkanyi.

The Hungarian Parliament adopted the bill on Hungarian architecture on 12 December 2023, and the Hungarian Architecture Act was officially published 10 days later. The date of entry into force is different for certain sections of the Act, namely 30 December 2023, 1 October 2024, 1 January 2026 and finally 1 July 2027.

Under Hungarian law, conciliation boards were set up more than two decades ago, which provide a fast, efficient and inexpensive forum for dispute resolution compared to litigation in specific cases. The competence of the conciliation boards in relation to goods and services covers (i) the quality and safety of the services; (ii) application of product liability rules; and (iii) conclusion and performance of contracts. This type of conciliation can only be initiated by the consumer as an individual.

From 1 January 2024, taxpayers can benefit from a tax allowance for investments in the construction of electricity storage facilities. The tax allowance is available for 6 tax years, with the first tax year being either the year of installation or the following tax year, at the taxpayer's option. This incentive is intended to encourage the installation of new electricity storage facilities which enable the taxpayer to store electricity generated for its own use.

Starting on 1 January 2024, a new feature was launched regarding personal income allowances, meaning that certain tax base reduction allowances can also be claimed on a continuing basis. The purpose of the existing tax advance return is to allow the employer to determine and deduct the tax advance, considering both benefits and costs.

According to a draft legislation on digital companies issued at the end of 2023, “digital companies” would be exempt from paying public burdens and local business tax. Employees in employment relationships and the executives of companies could fulfil their tax payment obligations after their income through special public burden contributions.

The legal status of platform workers (e.g. food couriers) is continuously subject to interpretation and often times scrutiny from the authorities. The Hungarian Curia settled the status in its latest decision, at least from a labour law point of view.

In Hungary, a legal entity can separate into multiple legal entities through division or spin-off. In the case of a spin-off, the original legal entity continues to exist, and a portion of its assets is transferred to the newly formed legal entity as its successor.

In December 2023, the Hungarian Government significantly eased the regulatory conditions for the establishment of wind turbine projects in Hungary in order to comply with EU requirements and enhance the utilization of green energy.

We are witnessing an important advancement in the field of employment administration in Hungary. Starting from 1 January 2024, the Act on the Promotion of Employment and Unemployment Benefits was amended, introducing the obligation for employers to issue an employment certificate following the termination of employment.

As of 13 January 2024, a new government decree amends the provisions of the clearance procedure of the Government Decree on certain foreign direct investments (“FDI”). The amendment grants the Hungarian State a right of first refusal in respect of acquisitions of strategic companies whose main or additional registered activity is electricity production and pursue solar power plant-related activity that are to be acquired by foreign investors.

The digitalisation of the Hungarian tax system has reached another important milestone: after lengthy preparatory work (and a few setbacks), the e-VAT system was launched on 1 January 2024, on a voluntary basis, for now.

In the summer 2022, the United States unilaterally terminated the US-Hungary double tax treaty with Hungary.

At the II National Regulators Conference it was announced that the Digital Citizenship programme to be launched between July and September 2024 and the necessary legislation to be submitted to the Parliament in November 2023. With this step the Hungarian Government follows the trend, where citizens are dealing at an increasing rate with administrative cases on their mobile phones.

There is a bill on the new Hungarian Architecture Act, which would replace the acts on Engineers and Professional Chambers, on the Shaping and Protection of the Built Environment and on the Protection of Townscape, and will consolidate their provisions in a modernised and clear code.

On 19 October 2023, Ambassador Harry Alex Rusz, Permanent Representative of Hungary to the Council of Europe deposited the instrument of ratification of the Amending Protocol to the Convention for the Protection of Individuals with regard to the Processing of Personal Data.

KCG Partners at a Glance

KCG Partners is a Hungarian business law firm providing a comprehensive range of legal services to international and local clients seeking local knowledge and global perspective. The firm comprises business-minded lawyers with sector-specific expertise, creating value for clients by applying a problem-solving approach and delivering innovative solutions.

The firm has a wealth of knowledge in corporate law, M&A, projects and construction, energy, real estate, tax, employment, litigation, privacy and forensics, securitization, estate planning and capital markets.

To address clients’ regional and international concerns, the firm maintains active working relationships with other outstanding independent law firms in Central and Eastern Europe, whilst senior counsel Mr. Blaise Pásztory brings over 40 years’ of US capital market and fund management experience.

KCG Partners Law Firm is the result of the teamwork of passionate and talented lawyers guided by the same principles and sharing the same values: 

  • Our most valuable asset is our people. They are the engine of our business and the key to our success.
  • We push boundaries by looking for innovative solutions that can empower our clients to achieve greater results.
  • We place our experience, commitment and professionalism to your service.
  • We are driven by our vision to shape and lead the Hungarian legal market and become a first choice law firm in our practice areas.

Firm's website: http://www.kcgpartners.com