Time and again, especially with international Internet portals, the question arises as to whether German courts have jurisdiction, for example when an act is carried out on the website that would be observing under German competition law.

Courts usually agree that content in German is sufficient for the website to be offered to German users, which then gives rise to the jurisdiction of German courts. Especially providers of apps or websites from Switzerland or Austria should always take this into account, because as you can see from my blog articles, violations of German competition law happened quickly, a possible injunction quickly applied for. Enforcement in Switzerland or Austria is not too difficult.

But what is true in the opposite case? What if a website can be accessed via a .de domain, but the content is in the English language? The Higher Regional Court of Frankfurt addressed the issue and concluded that jurisdiction existed in this case as well.

The international jurisdiction of the German courts for advertising distributed on the Internet is given if it is a “de” top-level domain and the website does not contain any indication that the offer is not available to German interested parties. judges; such a reference cannot be seen solely in the use of the English language.

Incidentally, this also applies to providers from Germany, with a German presence and a lack of distancing from customers from Austria and/or Switzerland. A cost/benefit factor must therefore be taken into account when drawing up general terms and conditions and declarations of revocation.

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