Programme overview

Commercial and Company Law

What aspects does the programme cover?

The two main pillars of the programme are (1) company law and (2) commercial law.

1. Company law

The company law pillar focuses on the main topics of corporate governance. Issues such as the functioning of the board of directors, shareholder rights and cross-border voting and some aspects of European labour law will be comprehensively discussed. Attention is also given to the EC-directives on the freedom of establishment, national and cross-border mergers, take over bids, representation, supranational companies and the Societas Europaea.

2. Commercial law

The commercial law pillar consists of courses detailing the risks of international trade, how these risks can be allocated (e.g. by utilizing documents of title) and how they may be averted or minimised. Its focus is the individual contracts on which the cooperation between the multitude of businesses involved in an international sale of goods transaction is based as well as the legal foundations of these transactions. Such contracts include contracts of insurance, financing and payment, transport, storage and logistics.

Does the program have a particular focus?

The Master Commercial and Company Law distinguishes itself from other LL.M. programmes in business law by emphasizing private legal relationships, the balance between commercial law, corporate law and procedural law courses. 

Based in the port of Rotterdam, this programme educates legal professionals that are to become well versed in both commercial and company Law. Due to its position in the centre of a large trade hub, the programme can offer you many opportunities for exploration of trade in practice by combining the theory that is taught with on-site workshops.

At the beginning of the programme, you receive an introduction to commercial and company law. You learn how to do independent legal research and how to report your findings through presentations and papers during a 15 EC Research & Writing Skills course. Attendance of the meetings is mandatory. Successful completion of this course is a precondition to being admitted to the master thesis.

The second block is composed of two 5 EC courses, i.e. Commercial Law and International Corporate Governance. The third block is composed of one 10 EC course, Company Law and Restructuring. The fourth block includes one 5 EC bound elective and one 5 EC elective. The fifth and last block consists of two 5 EC courses, Carriage of Goods and Trademark Law, and a master's thesis.

You have the opportunity to apply for international moot competitions. Joining this competition means that the student gets 5 EC, personal coaching, learns to work in a team and gets the opportunity to represent the Erasmus University abroad. You have various opportunities to receive a special certificate for extracurricular activities like being an Associate Member of the TTLA or Board Member of the Study trip committee.

Within a university, teaching and research are combined. At the master level, you will be brought into closer contact with the research. Ultimately, you will have to conduct scholarly research yourself (in your master's thesis). Both for research and in legal practice, certain academic and practical skills are indispensable. 

Commercial Law focuses on the contract of sale as the master plan governing the organization of international commercial transactions.

This course examines corporate governance practices from an international and multidisciplinary perspective. Corporate governance deals with the mechanisms through which control is exercised over corporate managers.

The general theme of the course Company Law and Restructuring is corporate restructuring in the internal market of the EU and concerns legal as well as fiscal and economic aspects. The course is taught based on the necessary reading materials, case law materials and practical cases. Active participation and discussion of the students are expected and motivated.

Intellectual Property Rights: The course will provide in-depth knowledge of the most important IP rights. The focus will be on patent law (including the protection of biotechnology and software), trademark law (including community trademark law), copyright (including neighbouring rights), database law, design law (including the community design) and trade name law. Some related fields (such as general unfair competition law and advertising law) will also be discussed.

Read more on Intellectual Property Law

European Private International Law: The course will focus on the general concepts and the application of private international law, and in particular private international law at European Union level and related international conventions. Where relevant, attention will be paid to comparative aspects, for example, common law jurisdiction vs civil law jurisdiction. Instruments to be discussed include those dealing with international jurisdiction, recognition and enforcement, evidence, service of documents, insolvency, and harmonised European procedures (order for payment and small claims), as well as the applicable law to (commercial) contracts and torts.

Read more on European Private International Law

The course Carriage of Goods is based upon a theme-by-theme approach, whereby the alternative solutions given by the various unimodal transport law conventions (Hague-Visby Rules, Hamburg Rules, CMR, CMNI, COTIF-CIM, and Montreal) are compared and contrasted to provide a more in-depth insight in the various subjects at hand. 

To enrol for the course Trademark Law it is required to have a grade higher than 8 for Intellectual Property Rights.

Erasmus Student Network Opens external (ESN) is a non-profit international student organization. Their mission is to represent international students, thus provide opportunities for cultural understanding and self-development under the principle of Students Helping Students.
Their main focus is placed on current exchange students. They offer help in the academic, social and practical integration process. This is mainly done through activities in the local sections, which include cultural and social events such as trips to various places within the country, film nights, language projects, international food festivals and last, but not least, parties. In addition to that, many sections have introduced mentor systems, which help the international students mainly in academic and practical integration.

The Trade & Transport Law Association (TTLA) aims to involve internationally oriented students interested in the field of trade and transport. By visiting a broad spectrum of firms and companies engaged in this field they introduce students and practitioners to each other. Additionally, they offer a broad variety of social events in order to get acquainted with others that share your passion for this field of law! 

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