General terms and conditions

1. IP Porta – IP Porta is an independent Belgian law firm managed by the civil-law partnership Ongena-Hubert, with Crossroads Bank for Enterprises (CBE) number 0829.555.975. Its offices are established at Kortrijksesteenweg 127, 9830 Sint-Martens-Latem (Belgium). All lawyers at IP Porta are members of the Ghent bar and are subject to this bar’s deontological rules of conduct, which can be consulted at http://www.balie-gent.be

2. Scope of application – These general terms and conditions always apply to all instructions accepted and carried out by IP Porta. They exclude any purchasing conditions of the client. The client is deemed to know and unreservedly accept the general terms and conditions. 

3. Instructions – IP Porta and the client will make the necessary effort to verify the existence of possible conflicts of interest and to communicate these with each other before IP Porta starts to provide its services. IP Porta will carry out all instructions to the best of its ability and within a reasonable period. IP Porta undertakes to treat every instruction confidentially in accordance with the Bar Association’s deontological rules. The client will be promptly informed about the performance of the instruction and, where applicable, about the course of the case. IP Porta is entitled to outsource the instructions to associates within the firm and to substitutes for court work. IP Porta is further entitled, in consultation with the client, to engage third parties (specialist lawyers or other experts). 

4. Cooperation of the client – The client must provide all information that is necessary for IP Porta to carry out the instruction effectively. The client warrants that the information provided is accurate, complete and reliable. If the client does not provide the necessary cooperation, does not do so on time, or does not do so as agreed, IP Porta may discontinue its services after having unsuccessfully demanded proper cooperation from the client. IP Porta is not liable for any damage that may arise from this discontinuation of services nor from any failure to meet deadlines that is attributable to the client, third parties or force majeure.

5. Fees and disbursements – IP Porta charges its fees according to hourly rates or other methods as determined in consultation with the client. The hourly rate is determined on the basis of the level of speciality and experience of the lawyer and the urgency, importance and/or specific nature of the case. Disbursements that IP Porta pays in advance specifically for the client will be invoiced to the client at the same cost price. The firm charges a kilometre allowance for distances travelled. Unless expressly agreed otherwise, general office expenses will be charged at a fixed rate on the basis of a certain percentage of the fees due. Judicial officers’ fees are invoiced directly by them to the client. Every estimate of the fees due for a specific instruction is made in good faith. Nevertheless, it only serves as an estimate and is thus not binding on IP Porta. IP Porta will inform the client in due time if there is a risk that the estimate will be exceeded during the performance of an instructions.

6. Invoicing – IP Porta may charge a fee for the time spent on necessary preparatory research for accurately determining an estimate of the fees due. At the commencement of each new case, IP Porta will send an invoice for an advance fee to the client. If this amount is not paid, IP Porta will be entitled to suspend the provision or further provision of services. Save exceptions or high volume work, IP Porta invoices its services on a monthly basis. The client receives a detailed list of services with every fee statement, unless a fixed fee was agreed upon.

7. Payment – The fee statements sent by IP Porta must be paid within 14 days of the invoice date. In case of late payment, (i) default interest of 10% per annum from the invoice date and (ii) compensation equal to 10% of the invoice amount, subject to a minimum of €100, as compensation for all collection costs, will be added to the invoice. After giving the client a notice of default, IP Porta is entitled to suspend further services until all overdue fee statements have been paid. If the client does not agree to a request for an advance payment or the fee statement, he must send a motivated and written objection to IP Porta within 14 days of receipt thereof.

8. Clients’ funds – All funds received from third parties on behalf of the client will be deposited in the lawyer's trust account. IP Porta may deduct amounts to cover outstanding advance payments or fee statements from the amounts that it receives on behalf of the client. IP Porta will inform the client in writing hereof, as the occasion arises. IP Porta will immediately transfer all amounts that it receives from the client for third parties to these third parties.

9. Intellectual property rights – All intellectual property rights relating to procedural documents, contracts, opinions and other documents issued by IP Porta belong exclusively to IP Porta and may not in any case be used or reproduced without IP Porta’s express, prior and written consent.

10. Liability – All obligations of IP Porta and its associates (hereinafter: IP Porta) are best-effort obligations. IP Porta is not liable for errors (including negligence and major errors) unless there is wilful misconduct. IP Porta’s liability can, moreover, only be invoked with regard to written correspondence signed by a partner. IP Porta’s liability is limited in any case to the amount paid by its professional liability insurers, which the client expressly accepts. The client will receive additional information about these insurance policies by simple written request. If the insurers do not make payment, for whatever reason, the liability of the associates will in any event be limited in respect of the principal sum, costs and interest to the proven direct damage, subject to the maximum of the amount paid by the client in fees for the services provided by IP Porta that gave rise to the issue of liability. IP Porta is not liable for shortcomings by third parties or other experts, or for indirect and/or unproven damage suffered by the client or a third party.

11. Protection of personal data and privacy – For more information on how IP Porta processes your personal data, please refer to the attached privacy policy.

12. Termination of case – The client and IP Porta may terminate the agreement in writing at any time and without any termination cost. In this case, the client must pay IP Porta for all of its services and disbursements incurred on the client’s behalf. IP Porta must return all documents to the client immediately on request.

13. Competent court and choice of law – Any dispute concerning the cooperation between IP Porta and the client falls under the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of Ghent and is subject to Belgian law. Any claim that has not been instituted in court within a year of its originating cause will cease to exist. The parties may also rely on the amicable dispute resolution procedure provided by the Bar Council (for more information, see http://www.balie-gent.be).


Contact us

Kortrijksesteenweg 127

9830 Sint-Martens-Latem

Tel. +32 9 324.15.40
Fax +32 9 324.15.45
info@ipporta.be

Or complete the contact form.