Legal systems of CE Countries on Crowdfunding
This deliverable aims at analysing the ongoing applicable legal framework to crowdfunding in Central Eastern EU Member States. To properly carry out the analysis, the authors of the deliverable first explained the baseline methodology ant taxonomy; in this regard, the most important sectors related to the evolution of crowdfunding are duly considered. Then crowdfunding is assessed under the legal point of view; in doing so, the authors consider the legal orders of the international community, the European Union, and the EU Member States of the partners participating to the present project. Finally, core conclusions are presented which also try to pave the way for further recommendations on key legal issues somehow affecting the evolution domestic and cross-border crowdfunding in the area concerned.
At the time the deliverable was completed, regulatory gaps concerning crowdfunding have been detected. In particular, only a few Central-Eastern EU Member States have so far produced regulations on crowdfunding, while the others have not. In addition, already existing national regulations (and applicable domestic practices) are rather divergent in terms of scope of application, subject matter, type and degree of the obligations. As for the EU, no legally binding initiatives have been adopted by the end of 2017; indeed, the European Commission preferred to monitor the evolution of national regulations and practices, to promote studies and reports, and to consult relevant stakeholders. Lack of common rules has been giving rise to an uncertain legal framework on crowdfunding and is probably limiting the potential of cross-border crowdfunding as a tool to support financing for SMEs. Furthermore, lack of clarity also affects other crucial topics such as tax-related obligations, information requirement, etc. However, despite the complexity of the applicable legal framework, crowdfunding is step by step entering the agendas of the EU and some Member States, in a way that more elements are now available to start a more robust and comprehensive legal program.
Against this background, the authors suggest that regulatory processes should be started in the Central-Eastern Europe EU Member States where crowdfunding has still not been regulated. Moreover, in the EU Member States which have adopted regulations on crowdfunding the scope of application of the binding acts so far adopted should be broadened, in order to cover more crowdfunding models. Also, efforts should be mate to reduce the differences between already existing national disciplines on crowdfunding. At the same time, the EU should move crowdfunding closer to the hearth of its agenda and keep focusing on this emerging sector through programmatic soft law acts; that could serve as a basis for a future supranational regulatory framework aiming at harmonizing certain aspects of (cross-border) crowdfunding.
The full research can be found here: Analysis of legal systems
Which are the key sectors to be considered when dealing with crowdfunding?
The most important sector to be considered are the ones connected with data protection, Intellectual Property, both in a national and European perspective, applicable tax regime and action to prevent risks of criminal law, particularly money laundering.
What is the state of the art of the applicable framework on crowdfunding in Central-Eastern
EU Member States?
It is quite different. Some States had introduced a specific regulation of crowdfunding (such as Austria, Italy and Germany), some other do not have it yet. There is a proposal of European Regulation for equity crowdfunding that, when approved, will affect all the EU member States.
Which are the core issues affecting cross-border crowdfunding in the area concerned?
The ones connected with INTRA-EU supplies of goods and services and the ones that has some kind of impact to the Capital Single Market (e.g. equity crowdfunding campaign).