Latest updates

Implementation of new Customs Act
Bryn Aarflot AS
  • Intellectual Property
  • Norway
  • 10 May 2021

By 1 July 2021 a new Customs Act will be implemented in Norway, with simplified procedures relating to the destruction of consignments which contain counterfeit goods. The amendments aim to align Norwegian customs control with EU regulations and practice. For IP owners, the new procedures are long overdue and will be welcomed. Under the new rules, counterfeit goods are more likely to be detained and destroyed, which in turn may result in fewer attempts to import counterfeit products overall.

Government proposes new measures to combat work-related crime
Homble Olsby | Littler
  • Employment & Immigration
  • Norway
  • 05 May 2021

The government has proposed several new measures to prevent and counteract work-related crime, including with regard to penalising wage theft, requiring that wages be paid via bank transfer rather than in cash and approving certain businesses to limit rogue actors. Parliament will now consider the proposals.

Patent prosecution: FAQs
Bryn Aarflot AS
  • Intellectual Property
  • Norway
  • 03 May 2021

The Patent Act constitutes the basic legislative framework regarding patents and their extent under Norwegian law. The Patent Act and its accompanying rules regulate the filing, formalities and substantive examination of patent applications and the registration, administrative opposition, cancellation and invalidation of granted patents. This article answers FAQs about patent prosecution in Norway.

Alleged retaliation cases after whistleblowing may be processed in the Anti-discrimination Tribunal
Homble Olsby | Littler
  • Employment & Immigration
  • Norway
  • 28 April 2021

The government recently submitted a proposal to Parliament for the establishment of a low-threshold service in the Anti-discrimination Tribunal for the processing of alleged unlawful retaliation in notification cases. The proposal means that the Anti-discrimination Tribunal will have the authority to assess the existence of an illegal retaliation and provide redress for non-economic loss and, in some cases, compensation for damages to an employee who has been subjected to illegal retaliation after notification.

Must jobseekers inform potential employers that they were dismissed by their former employer?
Homble Olsby | Littler
  • Employment & Immigration
  • Norway
  • 21 April 2021

The Supreme Court recently issued a decision concerning jobseekers' duty to provide information about previous employment relationships to potential new employers. The court highlighted a set of principled guidelines with regard to the content of the information to be provided and the extent of jobseekers' duty to provide such information. The key takeaway from the judgment is that it is primarily up to employers to clarify qualification requirements and skills that are of significant importance to the position.

The Thorco Cloud and Stolt Commitment collision: a long-lasting battle on courts' jurisdiction
  • Insurance
  • Norway
  • 30 March 2021

The Supreme Court is currently considering whether it will, for the third time, grant leave to appeal in respect of a procedural dispute in the wake of the 2015 collision between two vessels. Jurisdiction in Norway was originally sought on the basis that one of the vessel's protection and indemnity insurers was Norwegian. The previous decisions concerned the interpretation of the Lugano Convention and the question of whether the Norwegian courts are competent to assume jurisdiction in this matter.

Overview of current temporary lay-off rules
Homble Olsby | Littler
  • Employment & Immigration
  • Norway
  • 17 March 2021

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many companies have experienced a reduction in their workload and have had to temporarily lay off employees. However, it can be difficult for employers and employees to stay up to date with the rules on temporary lay-offs. This article highlights the key terms and procedural rules relating to temporary lay-offs, providing an overview of the current rules and proposed changes.

New rules on tax-free gifts from employers and tax exemption for influenza and COVID-19 vaccines
Homble Olsby | Littler
  • Employment & Immigration
  • Norway
  • 10 March 2021

The government has made several changes to the regulations concerning the reporting and taxation of benefits in kind. The changes aim to simplify how employers apply the regulations in practice. Previously, gifts from employers were tax free only when they were part of the company's general scheme; however, this requirement has been repealed. The government has also decided that influenza and COVID-19 vaccines covered by employers will be tax free from 2021.

Sickness benefits, work assessment allowance, unemployment benefits and entry quarantine rules extended
Homble Olsby | Littler
  • Employment & Immigration
  • Norway
  • 03 March 2021

As part of the COVID-19 crisis package, the government has proposed to extend the schemes for sickness benefits, the jobseekers' work assessment allowance, unemployment benefits and employers' expenses relating to foreign nationals' entry quarantine and employees' quarantine hotel stays.

Proposal to extend increased daily unemployment benefit and temporary lay-off periods until July 2021
Homble Olsby | Littler
  • Employment & Immigration
  • Norway
  • 24 February 2021

The government has proposed to extend until 1 July 2021 both the period in which the increased daily unemployment benefit rate applies and the temporary lay-off period. The government stated that the extended measures aim to give employees and employers more predictability during a difficult time.

Supreme Court's ruling on workplace sexual harassment provides clarification
Homble Olsby | Littler
  • Employment & Immigration
  • Norway
  • 17 February 2021

The Supreme Court recently pronounced a judgment in which a female employee was awarded damages for non-economic loss after being subjected to sexual harassment by customers. The verdict provides useful clarifications regarding the conditions, and especially the lower limit, for sexual harassment. For employers, the various aspects of the matter are a reminder of the importance of complying with their duty to actively prevent and seek to prevent sexual harassment in the workplace.

Full City: key takeaways from limitation fund proceedings
Wikborg Rein
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Norway
  • 10 February 2021

The limitation fund established following the grounding of the Full City near Langesund in 2009 was recently distributed. The limitation fund proceedings, which ran parallel to the proceedings concerning the limitation fund established following the Server casualty in 2007, have helped to clarify several procedural aspects of limitation funds. This article examines the key takeaways from the limitation fund proceedings now that they have come to an end.

New stricter entry restrictions for foreign nationals: legal impact on working life
Homble Olsby | Littler
  • Employment & Immigration
  • Norway
  • 10 February 2021

The government has tightened foreign nationals' access to Norway with effect from 29 January 2021. This article discusses the legal impact for affected employers and employees, including with regard to temporary lay-offs, employers' right to prohibit employees' outward journeys, remuneration and support schemes, termination and tax and social security.

Offshore floating wind turbines and deep-water fish farms: different frameworks for success
Wikborg Rein
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Norway
  • 03 February 2021

The regulatory framework that exists within the shipping and offshore industries is long established. The general principle is that maritime assets above a certain size must be registered in a national ship registry, and vessel registration plays an important role in the financing of maritime and offshore assets. While the existing framework effectively extends to the offshore floating wind sector in Norway, the same cannot be said for deep-water fish farms.

New requirements for companies' reporting on equality and non-discrimination in the workplace
Homble Olsby | Littler
  • Employment & Immigration
  • Norway
  • 03 February 2021

Many companies are subject to a statutory activity and reporting obligation relating to equality and non-discrimination. The obligation is regulated in the Gender Equality and Discrimination Act, which imposes a mandatory working method on employers that includes documenting and managing risks of discrimination and obstacles to gender equality within companies. Many companies will have to spend time and resources on implementing sufficient systems and routines to comply with the new rules.

Withdrawal of wreck removal order following consideration of proportionality
Wikborg Rein
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Norway
  • 27 January 2021

In a recent administrative appeal decision, the Norwegian Coastal Administration (NCA) Head Office reversed the wreck removal order issued by the NCA Emergency Response Centre in respect of a cargo ship which sank in northern Norway in 2017. The decision confirms that the pollution authorities will consider the proportionality of the measures ordered when exercising their administrative discretion.

Remote working: topics and issues to consider when introducing a more permanent scheme
Homble Olsby | Littler
  • Employment & Immigration
  • Norway
  • 27 January 2021

Remote working has become increasingly common as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and many companies are considering introducing more permanent arrangements beyond the pandemic. Although remote working has clear benefits for many, it also has negative aspects and practical and legal challenges. This article highlights various topics and issues that employers should consider when introducing a more permanent scheme for working from home.

Beefing up emission and fuel standards in the Arctic
Wikborg Rein
  • Shipping & Transport
  • Norway
  • 20 January 2021

The 75th session of the International Maritime Organisation Marine Environment Protection Committee recently approved a ban on the use and carriage of so-called 'heavy fuel oil' in the Arctic. The proposed amendments are expected to be formally adopted in June 2021. However, more stringent standards have already been proposed by the Norwegian government for the area surrounding Svalbard.

Key employment and immigration developments in 2020 and 2021 – interview
Homble Olsby | Littler
  • Employment & Immigration
  • Norway
  • 20 January 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on the Norwegian employment and immigration world, particularly with respect to ways of working and the legal tools which employers can use. Looking ahead, the increased focus on environmental, social and governance requirements should lead to a greater focus on diversity and inclusion, equal pay and human rights abuses in supply chains. This video examines these matters and the potential impact that they may have on companies in Norway.

Invalid termination? Court rules on termination of graphic designers following business transfer
Homble Olsby | Littler
  • Employment & Immigration
  • Norway
  • 13 January 2021

The High Court Civil Division recently ruled on whether the termination of two graphic designers from Dagbladet newspaper following a major reorganisation and downsizing process had been valid. A particular point of contention was whether the case processing had been sufficient. The court assessed whether the terminations were valid, the postponement of the service was to be regarded as a business transfer and the graphic designers were entitled to compensation for non-pecuniary damage.