Darren Abrahams

Partner
Avenue Louise 489
B-1050 Brussels
TEL: +32 2 626 0500
FAX: +32 2 626 0510

Darren Abrahams is an English barrister, Steptoe partner, and Avocat at the Brussels Bar.  His practice is focused on EU regulatory requirements and the related commercial issues in the environment, chemicals, and life sciences area.  Chambers Europe praises his "great knowledge and advice," while adding that he "adapts to the client's needs and gets to the point quickly."  Legal 500 EMEA notes his "comprehensive understanding" and "detailed and expert knowledge" of EU environmental regulation and Who's Who Legal Environment identifies him as one of the field's leading individuals.  

He works with clients in the following areas:

Advocacy and representation before the Court of Justice of the European Union, EU Institutions (Commission, Parliament and Council) and Agencies, and before the national authorities of EU Member States.  Representative matters include:

  • Two high-profile appeals to ECHA’s Board of Appeal under the REACH regime concerning data sharing (A-005-2013, Vanadium Consortium/Appeal against data sharing decision; A-017-2013, Vanadium Consortium/Appeal against data sharing decision)
  • An appeal to the Court of Justice of the EU on the interface between transparency and environmental disclosure rules (C-673/13 P, Commission v Stichting Greenpeace Nederland and PAN Europe) in the agrochemicals context and an action before the EU General Court related to the same issues in the REACH context, in which we defended ECHA (T-245/11, ClientEarth and International Chemical Secretariat v ECHA)
  • A series of cases before the General Court of the EU on restrictions of agrochemicals and the precautionary principle (T-584/13, BASF Agro and Others v Commission;
    T-451/13, Syngenta Crop Protection and Others v Commission; and T-429/13, Bayer CropScience v Commission)

Product defense and product approvals in the chemicals (REACH, Classification, Labelling and Packaging, biocides, agrochemicals, cosmetics, and emerging issues including nanotechnology and endocrine disruptors) and biotechnology (genetically modified food, feed and plants) areas.  Representative matters include:

  • Strategic and practical advice on all aspects of REACH (including as an “Only Representative” and “Third Party Representative”)
  • Advice on the operation of the EU Classification, Labelling & Packaging regime implementing GHS
  • Data sharing, consortia and supply agreements for biocidal products and agrochemicals)

Due Diligence aspects of international transactions.  Representative matters include:

  • Supporting a client’s purchase of a biocides business and ensuring EU uninterrupted market access of products

Regulatory compliance programs and obtaining licenses to operate.  Representative matters include:

  • Developing and executing strategies for: EU market entry of a food supplements company, compliance with the WEEE and RoHS regimes, and EU environment, health and safety rules.  

Commercial impacts of new EU regulatory initiatives, and advocacy on behalf of clients to help shape their legislative and policy environment.  Representative matters include:

  • Extensive work on the proposed nationalization of the EU system of approvals for the cultivation of genetically modified organisms

His professional experience includes an internship with the European Commission’s Environment Directorate General, during which time he assisted on dossiers such as the Environmental Liability Directive and Aarhus Convention. He lectures and publishes regularly.

Noteworthy

  • Chambers Europe, Environment; Regulatory (Europe), 2017
  • Chambers Europe, Agro/Food: Regulatory (Europe), 2017
  • Chambers Europe, Environment: Regulatory (Belgium), 2009-2016
  • Legal 500 EMEA, EU Regulatory: Chemicals (REACH), 2013-2017
  • Legal 500 EMEA, EU Regulatory: Food, 2012-2017
  • Legal 500 EMEA, EU Regulatory: Environment (including WEE and RoHS), 2008-2013, 2016
  • Best Lawyers in Belgium, Regulatory Practice, 2016-2018 
  • Who's Who Legal for Environment, 2010-2017
  • LMG Life Sciences, "Life Sciences Star," Belgium and European Union, 2015
  • LMG Life Sciences"Life Sciences Star," 2014

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Selected Publications

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Professional Affiliations

  • American Chamber of Commerce to the EU
  • Bar European Group
  • UK Environmental Law Association