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Saturday 04 December 2021
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Viva voce examinations of PhD Thesis

Employee ownership's consequences in business law (01-06-2007)

01/06/2007 16:32 Age: 15 an(s)
Category: Private Law PhD, CRDP-LERADP, Françoise Dekeuwer-Défossez, Thèse déposée sur TEL

By: BRUDER Amélie

This Private Law PhD thesis was realised inside the LERADP and supervised by Françoise Dekeuwer-Défossez

How can one translate into legal terms the association of employee ownership and work, when these two reality are opposed? The employee owner is not an ordinary owner and his existence results from incitative financial mechanisms aimed at allowing employee owners to acquire their firm’s stock. Among these mechanisms, we can find reductions in stock prices, together with the opportunity to acquire such stock thanks to sums paid into a wage savings scheme. The later involve a number of tax breaks, themselves implying long term holding of the firm’s stock. Has this system consequences on constitutional principles of business law, in particular on associate’s on the notion of partnership and the principle of equality? The consequences of the appearance of this new owner seem to be small, since in fact the principles are not basically changed, but at the most slightly modified.  Conversely, studying the phenomenon emphasizes the idea that employee owners participate actively in their financing of their firm, by avoiding the need to resort to loan and by favoring capital stability. Moreover, it is clear that stock allocation to employees compensations for a slowing down in growth of salaries, which is far from negligible at a time when purchasing power seems to be on the decline.

However, working in a firm, whose stock one owns may seem dangerous, unless it is possible to check the firm’s management. Does the appearance of employee owners allow such checks by workers? Although one might be tempted to believe this, the reply is negative. Since, in practice, a lack of clarity in certain texts takes this power away from the employee owners. Improvement hence seem to be desirable, to the extent that employee owners are they elements in their firm, as they allow a real corporate culture to be developed, which plays a role in promoting productivity.

Employee ownership's