International law firm Pinsent Masons has challenged UK businesses to engage in EU consultations if they don't want to see a repeat of the recent cookies debacle.
Expert lawyer Luke Scanlon has said that UK businesses should actively involve themselves in the debate over changes to EU law if they want to avoid problems stemming from the way those laws are drafted.
The criticism follows after a UK software firm stripped its websites of "cookies solutions" and called on the UK's Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) to "sue" it for non-compliance with The Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations 2011. Silktide created a dedicated website promoting its non-compliance where it announced that it was "sick" of the ICO and "the ridiculous cookie law".
"Businesses should be engaging in preventative legal care now by seeking to influence policy and ensuring that the UK's EU representatives are provided with focussed empirical economic evidence which builds a case for regulation that supports rather than hinders the interests of UK businesses and the wider economy," the expert added.
The comments came as the UK government announced further cuts in red tape to help businesses during these difficult economic times. The government plans to scrap or change more than 3,000 regulations, including Health and Safety regulations which, ministers say, place an unnecessary burden on some businesses. Another 3,000 regulations! We really must be sinking in the quadmire of stagnant bureaucracy if all these have been flagged up now following a 3-year purge on red tape. I don't know whether to congratulate the government on taking further action to reduce this bureaucratic madness or berating it for not doing so earlier.
Smarter regulatory architecture
Still, we are where we are. We need a regulatory architecture that reduces the size, complexity and constant change in the rule book for business. Firms need lower compliance burdens, with fewer costly and resource-intensive processes and co-operative, not punitive, enforcement of the rules – to deliver a better local business environment for all... growth, more jobs, and better lifestyle.
But businesses can do more to influence discussions over laws and regulations, one of the key reasons why the E RADAR website was established and is also free to use. We actively track the latest laws and regulations in order to support you and the UK's economy during these difficult economic times.
What do you think? Is your business to blame for not participating in European consultations? Do you deserve all the bad legislation because of your apathy towards law making?
We'd love to hear from you!