• Intellectual property framework


    Protection of intellectual property rights is required by the Federal Constitution and by several multilateral treaties. The main statutes in this area are federal statutes. However, in case of litigation, some matters are subject to federal jurisdiction, and others to provincial jurisdiction.

  • Commercial contract framework


    Commercial contracts are governed by the Civil and Commercial Code. This code came into effect in 2015 and it replaces the previous separate Civil Code and Commercial Code. It is part of the federal legislation, but jurisdiction regarding its implementation and litigation resulting thereunder corresponds primarily to the provincial courts.

    The Civil and Commercial Code includes general provisions on contracts, which are applicable to all contractual transactions. These provisions govern matters such as the formation of contracts, offer and acceptance, possible subject matter of contracts, legal formalities, the legal effects of contracts, contract termination and others.

    In addition, the Civil and Commercial Code includes provisions applicable to specific types of contracts, such as sale agreements, leases, franchise agreements and agency agreements. More than 30 types of agreements are subject to specific provisions of this kind. These specially regulated agreements are thus subject to the general rules applicable to contracts –described above – and to the special rules applicable to the relevant type of agreement. Agreements that are not subject to special rules are nevertheless valid, and they are governed primarily by the general contract rules and – to the degree possible – by the rules applicable to analogous specially regulated contracts.

    Other laws include provisions on specific types of commercial contracts. For instance, the Copyright Law includes certain provisions of contracts related to software and to publishing; the Patent Law includes rules on license agreements; and the Insurance Law includes rules on insurance contracts. However, in all these specially regulated contracts, the general contract law rules included in the Civil and Commercial Code are also applicable.

    Commercial contracts with the federal or provincial governments or with other governmental entities are also governed by administrative law. Special rules on contracts with state entities have been included in federal or provincial laws, or have been developed by case law.

  • Copyrights

    Nature of right

    Copyright protects intellectual creations in all fields of science, art and literature. Article 1 of the Copyright Law includes a non-exhaustive list of possible intellectual works protected by copyright. These include, among others, literary and artistic works, music, architectural works and software.

    Copyright protects intellectual expressions, but not ideas. For example, the contents of a book in terms of sentences and other literary expressions are protected by copyright, but the creative idea underlying the book as a whole is not.

    Copyright results from the creation of an intellectual work. Registration is not necessary for copyright to exist, although it is necessary for the exercise of some rights by local authors. Upon creation of a protected work, copyright belongs to the original author or authors, who then may transfer their right, by contract or by the operation of certain legal rules.

    Copyright includes economic and moral rights. Economic rights consist, basically, in the exclusive right to use and exploit the protected work. The Copyright Law lists some of the elements of this exclusive right, such as the right to reproduce the relevant work, to market copies, to prepare derivative works or to have the work performed publicly.

    Moral rights include the so-called “integrity right” – that is, the right to preserve the text, title and other contents of the work, even if property rights on such work have been assigned; the “paternity right” – the author’s right to be named and identified as such together with the work; the “publication right” – the right to decide whether the right will be published; and the “alteration right” – that is, the right to modify the work, even after it has been published. Moral rights belong to the author, and they are generally non-assignable.

    Legal framework

    Copyright law is included in Law 11, 723, as amended. In addition, multiple laws and regulations govern matters such as related rights, publishers' rights and collective management societies.

    Argentina is part of the main multilateral international copyright agreements, such as the Trips Agreement, the Berne Convention and the Rome Convention. The provisions of these agreements are actively enforced by the courts.

    Duration of right

    The general rule is that copyright protection lasts for a term of 70 years, counted as of January 1 of the first year after the death of the author, as well as through the life of the author.

    In the case of work done through cooperation, the 70-year term is computed from the death of the last person who participated in the joint authorship of the work involved.

    In the case of posthumous works, the 70-year term is computed from the death of the author.

    The duration of protection of anonymous works whose copyright belongs to institutions, corporations or legal entities is 50 years from the date of publication of the work.

    Special rules on copyright duration apply to specific types of copyrightable works, such as photographs and cinematographic works.

    Ownership / licenses

    The basic rule is that ownership belongs to the author. Special rules have been developed in connection with special types of works, such as cinematographic works, derivative works and software.

    There are several types of joint ownership. It may apply to works done through cooperation, which imply a creative collaboration between different authors; to collective works, which are those created through the initiative or direction of one or more individuals, who coordinate or direct the efforts of several other individuals to achieve a joint result; and to composite works, which are the result of adding different separate works, each with a possible separate author and owner, into one final result.

    Works created by employees who have been hired for that purpose belong to the employer.

    Copyright may be subject to licenses, generally as part of broader contractual arrangements, such as publishing agreements.

    Remedies for infringement

    Damages may be claimed before civil courts for all types of copyright violation. Registration of works is not necessary, except for local authors, whose rights may be suspended until registration takes place.

    It is also possible to file civil action to prevent further copyright violation and to obtain preliminary remedies, such as injunction, in the course of civil procedures.

    Criminal remedies, particularly fines, are possible but are not frequently applied.

  • Mask works / topographies

    Nature of right

    Mask works and topographies are not separately protected under Argentine law. They may be protected under patent law or by way of confidentiality.

    Legal framework

    Argentina has enacted no specific rules on chip protection. Although Argentina is part of the WTO and has approved the Trips Agreement, it has not yet implemented any rules on chip protection.

    The provisions on chip protection included in the Trips Agreement have not been deemed immediately applicable under Argentine law. In addition, Argentina has not ratified or implemented other multilateral treaties on chip protection, in particular the Treaty of Washington of 1989.

    Semiconductor technology, generally, and topographies, in particular, may be protected under the traditional intellectual property rules applicable to all types of technology, specially patent law and the rules on confidential information. Therefore, matters such as the duration of the relevant rights, ownership and remedies depend on the type of protection used in connection with each specific mask work or topography.

    Duration of right

    Not applicable for this jurisdiction.

    Ownership / licenses

     Not applicable for this jurisdiction.

    Remedies for infringement

    Not applicable for this jurisdiction.

  • Patents

    Nature of right

    Patents are a statutory right. The granting of patents is required by the Argentine Constitution and by different international documents, particularly the Trips Agreement. Patent rights imply an exclusive right to exploit a process or a product. The Argentine Patent Law defines the limits of these exclusive rights, on the basis of the provisions of the Trips Agreement.

    Legal framework

    Patents are governed by the Patent Law – Law 24,481, as amended. In addition, they are governed by the Trips Agreement and by the Paris Convention. Argentina is not a party to the Patent Cooperation Treaty.

    Duration of right

    The basic rule is that patents expire 20 years after the date in which the relevant patent application was filed. Argentina uses a "first to file" system, but it also applies the priority rules derived from the Paris Convention.

    Argentine law provides special rules on compulsory licenses and on patent termination due to lack of exploitation of the patented invention. Compulsory licenses may be granted in case of non-exploitation, competition law violations or sanitary emergencies, among other cases. Patent termination may result when, after a compulsory license was granted for lack of exploitation, no exploitation of the invention takes place for two years after the license was granted.

    Ownership / licenses

    Joint ownership is permissible. The Patent Law includes provisions on the exercise of patent rights by the joint owners. In addition, the Civil and Commercial Code rules on joint property apply to patents.

    The Patent Law includes rules on licenses. Licenses are not exclusive, unless the parties provide otherwise. Competition law rules are applicable to restrictive clauses included in license agreements.

    Remedies for infringement

    The Patent Law provides both civil and criminal law remedies for cases of infringement.

    Civil remedies include the compensation of damages and termination of the infringing activities.

    A complex system of rules for preliminary remedies in patent cases is included in the Patent Law. Generally, suspension of an alleged infringer's exploitation requires a preliminary procedure, with the participation of expert witnesses.

    Criminal procedures and sanctions are rare.

  • Trademarks

    Nature of right

    A trademark may consist of one or more words, with or without conceptual content, drawings, commercial symbols, monograms, engravings, prints, seals, images, stripes, color combinations, letter and number combinations, the special graphics of letters and numbers, advertisement phrases, reliefs, and any other sign with distinctive capacity.

    A trademark is normally protected by means of its registration. However, de facto trademarks, that is those that are used but not registered, are also protected in a more limited way.

    Legal framework

    Trademarks are governed by the Trademark Law – Law 22,362, as amended.

    In addition, trademarks are protected by the rules included in Trips Agreement and in the Paris Convention.

    Duration of right

    Registered trademarks are protected for a period of ten years from the moment of registration. Trademark registration may be renewed indefinitely.

    Registration may be canceled for lack of use during a period of five years. In addition, renewal of registration requires proof of the trademark's prior use.

    Ownership / licenses

    Ownership is acquired by means of registration. However, use of unregistered trademarks may result in certain rights for the user.

    Trademarks may be subject to joint ownership. The Trademark Law and the Civil and Commercial Code provide the rules applicable to these joint ownership relationships.

    Trademark licenses are possible. They are valid even if they are not registered with the trademark office.

    Remedies for infringement

    The Trademark Law provides both civil and criminal law remedies for cases of infringement.

    Civil remedies include the compensation of damages and the termination of the infringing activities.

    Special preliminary remedies are applicable in cases of trademark infringement. The trademark owner may obtain an injunction against the infringer, when the trademark is registered and its violation is immediately evident.

    Criminal law remedies are rarely used in practice.

  • Trade secrets

    Nature of right

    Argentine law provides protection for trade secrets and confidential information. A complex set of rules creates rights against conduct whereby access is gained illegally to confidential information, or which implies illegal use of trade secrets or confidential information or which results in the unauthorized and harmful disclosure of confidential or secret information.

    Confidential information is characterized by the fact that it is kept in a reserved manner and that it is not generally available for technicians working in the relevant technical field. Trade secrets receive a special degree of protection, particularly under criminal law.

    Legal framework

    Confidential information is governed and protected by Law 24,766. It is also protected by the Trips Agreement and by the Paris Convention.

    In addition, multiple rules and statutes protect confidential information and trade secrets. Labor law protects the confidentiality and ownership of information used in employment relationships.

    Several criminal law rules apply to special types of violations of confidentiality. In particular, disclosure of trade secrets and unfair competition by means of the illegal use or appropriation of trade secrets are subject to criminal law penalties.

    Duration of right

    Confidential information and trade secrets are protected for as long as the relevant information is kept confidential. The degree of protection diminishes if the information ceases to be objectively a secret due to its previous disclosure or because it has been obtained independently by other parties.

    Ownership / licenses

    Ownership results from the obtention of the information, accompanied by legal or practical measures aimed at restricting access to that information by third parties. No registration requirement is applicable.

    Joint ownership is possible.

    Trade secret or know-how licenses are common and enforceable.

    Remedies for infringement

    Argentine law provides civil and criminal law remedies for cases of trade secret infringement.

    Damages caused by these violations must be compensated. It is also possible to obtain court orders requiring termination of the violation.

    Preliminary remedies include injunctions against further exploitation or disclosure of trade secrets.

    Criminal remedies are applicable in cases of disclosure of trade secrets acquired in the course of employment and other professional relationship, as well as in cases in which the violation of the rights to confidential information or trade secrets results in unfair competition.

  • Other key IP rights

    Nature of right

    Industrial designs

    Industrial models and designs are protected by special industrial property rights. An industrial model or design consists in the forms embodied in or the aspect applied to an industrial or artisan product, which confer an ornamental character to such product.

    Exclusive rights on industrial models and designs result from registration of the relevant model or design.

    Industrial designs

    Industrial designs

    Legal framework

    Industrial designs

    Industrial models and designs are protected by Decree 6673/1963, as amended. They are also protected in accordance with the Trips Agreement and the Paris Convention.

    Duration of right

    Industrial designs

    The rights derived from the registration of an industrial model or design last for a five-year period, counted from the date of filing of the relevant application. The registration may be renewed for two successive five-year period, if the owner requests such renewal.

    Ownership / licenses

    Industrial designs

    Ownership belongs to the author. There is a rebuttable presumption to the effect that the first applicant of an industrial model or design registration is the author of such industrial model or design. Joint ownership is possible and is governed by the Civil and Commercial Code and by Decree 6673/1963 as amended.

    Industrial models or designs may be the subject matter of license agreements. No registration is necessary for the validity of these agreements.

    Remedies for infringement

    Industrial designs

    Civil and criminal law remedies are applicable in case of infringement. Civil remedies include the compensation of damages and termination of the violation.

    Preliminary injunctions and remedies are possible in accordance with general procedural rules.

    Criminal sanctions have been recently reinforced, but they are rarely applied.

  • Intellectual property in employment context


    Special rules on employee inventions are included in the Patent Law and in the Labor Contract Law.

    There are basically three types of invention, from the perspective of employer-employee relationships. First, inventions made in technological areas for which the employee was hired as a researcher or developer belong to the employer. The employee may be entitled to a special compensation if they develop a patented invention which exceeds the normal scope of the employee's work. Second, inventions related to the employee's work or related to the employer's know-how or activities belong to the employee, but allow the employer to exercise an option to acquire rights over the invention. If the option is exercised, the employee is entitled to a payment reflecting the value of the invention. Third, inventions that do not fall into the two previous categories belong to the employee.

    Similar rules are applicable in the case of other types of technology or intellectual property rights. In the case of software, the law applies the “work for hire” doctrine but allows the parties to agree to different contractual rules.

    Consultants / contractors

    The law is not explicit about the rights of consultants and contractors, who do not qualify as employees, with regard to technology and other intellectual property they develop. Generally, the parties may agree as to the rules which will apply to such rights. In the absence of a contractual framework, the technology or intellectual property generated by a consultant or contractor who was hired with the purpose of developing such items that will belong to the person paying for such work.

  • Key commercial contract considerations

    Registration of commercial agreements

    The general rule is that commercial agreements are not registered, and that their validity and effect is not subject to registration requirements. However, certain types of agreement must be registered to be effective or to have full effects against third parties. Agreements subject to registration include business association agreements, certain publishing agreements, certain chattel mortgages and certain agreements related to real estate. International transfer of technology agreements are subject to registration for tax purposes.

    Recognized language of commercial agreements

    Agreements are generally entered in Spanish. However, it is legally possible to enter agreements written in other languages. These agreements must be translated when presented in court. Spanish language may be necessary in consumer transactions.

    Country-specific issues for online content

    Argentina has ratified the WIPO conventions applicable to online content and practices. However, enforcement of these conventions is weak.

    Enforceability of online/clickwrap/shrinkwrap terms

    The general rule is that acceptance of terms included in online, click wrap or shrink wrap elements is valid and effective, provided such acceptance is clearly stated and applies to terms that were known to the person giving the acceptance. However, several rules may limit the effects of agreements entered by these mechanisms, particularly consumer protection rules and rules on adhesion contracts.

    Governing law

    The basic rule is that the parties may agree as to the law that will govern their contractual rights and as to the applicable jurisdiction in case of dispute. This freedom of election is subject to several limitations. Non-Argentine law will not be enforced in Argentine courts if it is contrary to Argentine public policy. Also, certain matters are necessarily governed by Argentine law; for example, if a business association is created in Argentina its organization and other corporate aspects will be governed by Argentine law. Decisions made by non-Argentine courts or arbitration tribunals are enforceable in Argentina only after going through a special procedure before the Argentine courts, in the context of which the decision will only be enforced if it complies with certain rules, particularly not violating Argentine public policy. In addition, certain matters (eg, deciding the validity of a patent issued in Argentina) are necessarily subject to Argentine jurisdiction.

  • Key commercial contract terms

    Enforceability of warranty disclaimers

    Argentine law provides certain warranties, generally applicable to all types of contracts implying the transfer of rights. These warranties apply, in particular, to the validity of the rights being transferred and to the fitness of the goods regarding which rights are transferred.

    The general rule is that these warranties may be limited or eliminated by agreement between the parties. However, these disclaimers are totally or partially invalid in several types of cases: if the transferor had prior knowledge of the invalidity of the transferred rights or of the deficiency of the goods involved; if the transferor is a merchant and the parties waiving the transferor's rights are not; and if the warranty disclaimer is included in a consumer or adhesion contract.

    Enforceability of exclusions/limitations of liability indemnification

    Exclusions or limitations of liability indemnification are valid if they meet the general conditions applicable to contractual clauses. However, they may be unenforceable in the following cases: when they extend to willful violations or defaults, or to violations or defaults resulting from gross negligence; when they are imposed in adhesion or consumer contracts; or when they result in the violation or annulment of rights that may not be removed or limited contractually.


    The basic rule under Argentine law is full indemnification of economic or moral damages caused by illegal conduct, whether that conduct constitutes a contractual or a tort violation.

    The parties are free to include contractual rules as to the extent of their indemnification obligations.

    Penalty clauses and liquidated damages clauses are acceptable, but they may be limited or amended by the courts if their terms are deemed abusive.

    In the absence of contractual provisions, the indemnification's extent will depend on circumstances such as the willful or negligent nature of the violation, foreseeability of the damages caused and the comparative fault of the parties.

    Electronic signatures

    Electronic signatures are valid and effective under Argentine law. However, certain legal effects require that the signature comply with a special certification regime.

  • Key contacts
    Guillermo Cabanellas
    Guillermo Cabanellas
    Senior Partner DLA Piper (Argentina) [email protected] T +5411 41145500 View bio

Key commercial contract considerations

Recognized language of commercial agreements


Agreements are generally entered in Spanish. However, it is legally possible to enter agreements written in other languages. These agreements must be translated when presented in court. Spanish language may be necessary in consumer transactions.


It is preferable to use consumer-friendly English to ensure transparency.


There are strict requirements on the clarity of business-to-consumer contracts, and the clarity is in principle jeopardized if the consumer is not familiar with the language of the contract. In case of Austrian consumers, unless a contract is in German, it will be likely assumed that an Austrian consumer will not understand the contract.


Commercial contracts may be concluded in any language. From an enforceability perspective, the claimant has to prove that the counterparty consented to the terms, which includes understanding the language. For consumers, this evidentiary burden of proof will be a high bar to clear if the contract language is not the official language of the region of residence of the consumer.


In general, there is no issue in having contracts executed in another language (eg, English); however, if the contract has to be taken to any Brazilian authority, including courts, only Portuguese versions or sworn translations will be accepted.

The Consumer Defense Code requires the presentation of products and services to consumers in Brazil to be in Portuguese, including precise, clear and ostensive information related to their characteristics, qualities, composition, price and warranty, among others. The contract will not be binding on consumers if it is written in a way that may be difficult for the consumer to understand, and the fact that the contract is written in another language might suffice for it to be deemed difficult to understand by a consumer.


Contract law is a matter of provincial, not federal, law. Generally speaking, a contract may be expressed in any language, although English and, French are the only official languages in Canada. In some provinces, notably Québec, special steps are required to be taken if a contract is drafted in any language other than French.


The Chilean law does not contain, in principle, any provisions on the language of contracts. According to the general rules, both parties must be able to understand the essential elements of the contract in order to conclude it.

In the use of general terms and conditions towards consumers, the language of the contract in principle has to be Spanish, except for foreign language words that have been incorporated into the lexicon, i.e., that are commonly used. An exception is admissible if the consumer expressly accepts the use of general terms and conditions in another language by signing a written document in Spanish attached to the contract, and obtains a copy of the contract in Spanish.


Generally, contracts signed in other languages are acceptable, but a Chinese translation should be provided for reference if the contracts are submitted to the relevant Chinese authorities or courts.


As per Resolution 486 and 351, the filing with the relevant authority to register intellectual property rights must be in Spanish. Nonetheless, if the documents or agreements are in a different language they will be accepted provided that they are translated to Spanish.

Czech Republic

Czech law does not set any language requirement. However, commercial agreements should be comprehensible to both parties. Authorities generally require translations to Czech. Most commercial agreements are in Czech. At the same time use of English is very common (typically when one of the parties is a foreign entity or English language template is used to avoid translation costs).


Commercial contracts in a business-to-business transaction are often in English, although Danish is the most common language.

In a business-to-consumer contract, Danish is preferable. In addition, Danish consumer law requires that specific compulsory information is provided in Danish if the product or service has been marketed in Danish by the trader, and unless the consumer has consented to receive the information in another language.


There are generally no language requirements for commercial agreements. Most B2B agreements are drafted in English or Finnish.


There is no requirement under French law that business-to-business contracts must be in French.

However, if documentation is provided to French consumers, the contract should at a minimum specify which party is responsible for producing French labeling or users' guides. Pursuant to the French Language Law of August 4, 1994 (Loi Toubon), any documentation or communication made to French consumers must be in French (any French translation must be as legible as the original version).

Also, under the French Language Law, a French or translated version of the agreement is required when concluding a contract with a public entity in France.


Commercial contracts can be concluded in any language that both parties understand. The recognized language basically depends on the language used by the contracting parties prior to the conclusion of the contract. In particular with regard to consumers, companies shall specify the applicable language prior to the conclusion of the contract. If, for example, information on the company homepage regarding products/services was displayed in German, the contract with the consumer (including related terms and conditions) must also be in German.

Hong Kong, SAR

English, and preferably "plain English" that is consumer-friendly, is the usual language for commercial contracts. Consumer-facing agreements and terms are often provided in dual language (English and Traditional Chinese).


There is no limitation in connection with the language of license agreements. Both parties shall be aware of the language of such agreements. If, however, the signatory of a contract does not speak the language in which the contract is executed, the contract might be null and void.


English is the most commonly used language for contracts in India.


Under Article 31 of Law Number 24 of 2009 on Flag, Language, State Emblem and National Anthem, Indonesian language must be used in any memorandum of understanding or any agreement entered with state institution, Indonesian government institution, Indonesian private entity or Indonesian citizen. Such memorandum of understanding or agreement that involves foreign party may also be made in the national language of the foreign party and/or in English. Further, Article 26 paragraph (4) Presidential Reg. 63 provides that in case of any discrepancy in the languages interpretation used in such memorandum of understanding or agreement, the language to be prevailed can be further agreed by the parties of the memorandum of understanding or agreement.


English is the recognized language for commercial contracts in Ireland. There are some specific provisions in consumer protection law in Ireland which inform not just the content of business to consumer commercial agreements but also the style of English used, encouraging clear and intelligible language to be used for the benefit of the consumer.


In general, there is no requirement under Israeli law that a commercial agreement will be drafted in any specific language, to the extent that the chosen language will be understood by all parties to the agreement.

In consumer-type agreements, entering into a transaction with a consumer by exploiting the consumer’s lack of knowledge of the specific language of the transaction is considered as an unfair influence by the dealer which is prohibited. Such a claim would have to be proved by the consumer according to the specific circumstances of the matter. There is a general presumption that if an individual has decided to enter into a transaction he or she understands its contents; however, such presumption, of course, can be rebutted.


Generally, the parties are free to determine the language of the contract. However, with regard to business-to-consumer agreements for the sale of goods and standard terms and conditions, Italian language is mandatory. Moreover, should one of the parties not be familiar with a foreign language, said party may claim the invalidity of some clauses of the contract.


Japanese language is used for consumer-facing commercial agreements though it is not mandatory for a contract to be enforceable. In business transactions, English agreements are not common but they are enforceable.


Commercial contracts may be concluded in any language. From an enforceability perspective, the claimant has to prove that the counterparty consented to the terms, which includes understanding the language. For consumers, this evidentiary burden of proof will be difficult to satisfy if the contract language is not the official language of the region of residence of the consumer.


Spanish. Documents to be filed with a governmental authority shall be translated into Spanish by an official translator.


Commercial contracts may be concluded in any language.

New Zealand

A contract in plain English that is consumer-friendly is preferred. In consumer contracts in particular, certain terms may be unenforceable if they are not brought to the consumer's attention in a clear and unambiguous manner.


Commercial contracts in business-to-business transaction are often in English, although Norwegian is the most common language between smaller companies.

Though not expressly required under mandatory law, Norwegian is preferable and recommended in business-to-consumer contracts.


English, and specifically "plain English" that is consumer-friendly, is preferred, particularly in consumer-facing commercial agreements and terms.

In the event of litigation, documentary evidence in the English or Filipino language is generally admissible as evidence under the Revised Rules of Evidence, as amended. In contrast, documents in an unofficial language may be admitted in evidence only when accompanied with a translation into English or Filipino.


Commercial agreements may be drafted in any language that the parties choose. However, contracts concluded with consumers have to be drafted in Polish. Also, for the purpose of providing the contract with the authorities or to register the contract in order to cause specific legal consequences, it may be necessary to prepare a Polish version or a sworn translation of the contract.


There are no general requirements under Portuguese law that provide that contracts must be written in Portuguese. However in certain cases (for instance, contracts with consumers), Portuguese language is mandatory, and, if the contract is to be used in specific situations (for example, for purposes of evidence in court or used with public authorities), translation to Portuguese is required.


There are no mandatory requirements in relation to the language of contracts concluded between professionals. However, legalized translations into Romanian are necessary for court proceedings purposes. For contracts concluded with consumers, Romanian language is mandatory.


The agreement can be executed in any language. However, for agreements concluded with Russian consumers (B2C), the Russian version is necessary as its absence may entail the risk of consumer claims based on "lack of information on the goods." In addition, Russian counterparties may request a Russian translation for administrative purposes, such as for tax inspections.

Saudi Arabia

Generally, there is no legal requirement to execute contracts in Arabic, although there are exceptions. It is however important to bear in mind that, if brought before the KSA courts/authorities, contracts and related documentation will need to be in the Arabic language or translated into Arabic by a certified translator. 


Generally, English is the language used in commercial agreements.

Slovak Republic

Slovak language is the official language in the Slovak Republic. However, in general commercial agreements may be concluded in a foreign language.

South Korea

Any language agreed between parties can be adopted as governing language of a contract. However, the STCA requires that standardized contract terms be provided in language and expression that can be easily understood by customers. Providing the standardized contract term in Korean can be a positive factor in meeting the requirement, but the positive effect is not so significant in case of large business entity customers.


Parties are in principle free to choose the language to govern their contract. In consumer-facing commercial agreements and terms, Spanish is mandatory (with a relevant role of regional languages).


Commercial contracts in a business-to-business situation are often in English, although Swedish is the preferred language.

Though not expressly required under mandatory law, Swedish is recommended for contracts in a business-to-consumer situation to avoid any arguments by customers that he is not to be bound by the agreement because he was not able to understand the content thereof. Furthermore, the Swedish Consumer Agency may also impose on a company to use Swedish in its agreements with consumers (including general terms and conditions). If English is used however, 'plain English' that is consumer-friendly is preferred.


English language is recognized and enforced in both business and consumer-facing contracts. However, it is recommended that one of the official Swiss languages is used for contracts with consumers.

Taiwan, China

The law is silent on the recognized language of commercial agreements. Chinese is the usual language for commercial agreements between local persons, and English is the usual language for the agreements between local people and foreigners.


A commercial contract with a Ukrainian party is highly recommended to be provided in Ukrainian or be bilingual, ie, in Ukrainian and language of  the other party.

United Arab Emirates

Contracting parties are free to choose the governing language of their agreements but, if an agreement is to be submitted to any official body or is subject to consideration in a local court in the UAE, it must be translated into Arabic.

United Kingdom

There is no general requirement that contracts need to be in the English language in order to have legal effect. As a basic principle, in relation to consumer contracts and notices a trader must ensure that the written terms of the consumer contract and written consumer notices are in plain and intelligible language. The courts may strike out limitations or similarly onerous provisions in consumer facing contracts which are not worded sufficiently clearly or with sufficient prominence (or are otherwise blacklisted or deemed unfair by relevant legislation).

United States

English, and specifically "plain English" that is consumer-friendly, is preferred, particularly in consumer-facing commercial agreements and terms.