Advertisement

Belgium

  • Astrid Coates
Chapter

Abstract

The most distinguishing feature of the cooperative in Belgium, compared to other company forms, is its variable capital share. Furthermore, this company structure caters for many tastes: for those wishing to use the structure for its legal flexibility, it offers the possibility to work with multiple voting rights, with different kinds of partners linked to different rights. For those with rather more idealistic aims, keeping the cooperative idea firmly in their minds, there is a wider scope for made-to-measure opportunities. Over the years, the Belgian legislator tried to find ways to focus more on the ideals and principles of cooperative entrepreneurship. Those who give preference to the true cooperative principles can turn to the National Council for Cooperatives' accreditation. The cooperative company, in combination with the social purpose label, also provides an interesting opportunity for founders who are looking for a legal vehicle with a wider social purpose. In this chapter the flexible cooperative law in Belgium, facilitating the freedom of founders, will be analyzed.

Keywords

Limited Liability General Assembly Legal Form Social Purpose Royal Decree 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Notes

Acknowledgements

The author would like to thank Peter Bosmans (Febecoop), Marleen Denef (Curia Lawyers), Anneleen Steeno (Intui Lawyers), Lieve Jacobs (Coopburo) and Wim Van Opstal (CESOC University College Leuven), for helpful discussions and comments. All potential errors are the sole responsibility of the author.

References

  1. Braeckmans H, Houben R (2012) Handboek vennootschappen (Guide to company law). Intersentia, AntwerpGoogle Scholar
  2. Coates A, Van Opstal W (2009) The joys and burdens of multiple legal frameworks for social entrepreneurship. Lessons from the Belgian Case. Working papers on social and cooperative entrepreneurship, Leuven, WP nr. 2009/3Google Scholar
  3. Coipel M (2009) Les avatars de la cooperative en droit belge. In: Hiez D (ed) Droit comparé des coopératives européennes. Larcier, Brussels, pp 127ffGoogle Scholar
  4. D’Hulstere D (2009) National report: Belgium. In: Cooperatives Europe, Euricse, Ekai center (eds) Study on the implementation of the Regulation 1435/2003 on the Statute for a European cooperative society, pp 343ffGoogle Scholar
  5. De Wolf M (2005) Les grands traits du régime juridique des sociétés coopératives. In: Non Marchand, vol 2005/2. De Boeck, Brussels, pp 32–33Google Scholar
  6. Du Faux H (1994) Les sociétés coopératives (The cooperative companies). In: Répertoire notariale, D1. XII, B.V. Larcier, Brussels, p 84Google Scholar
  7. Mertens S (2005) Une explication théorique à l’éxistence des coopératives agréées et des sociétés à finalité sociale en Belgique (A theoretical explanation of the existence of accredited cooperatives and social purpose companies in Belgium). In: Non Marchand, Management, droit et finance, vol 2, p 13Google Scholar
  8. Resteau C (1936) Traité des sociétés coopératives, 3rd edn, vol 222. Larcier, BrusselsGoogle Scholar
  9. ‘t Kint J, Godin M (1968) Les sociétés coopératives, vol 413–418. Larcier, BrusselsGoogle Scholar
  10. Van Hulle A, Van Hulle K (1996) De coöperatieve vennootschap (The cooperative company). Kluwer, AntwerpGoogle Scholar
  11. Van Opstal W (2012) Les coopératives en Belgique. Profil 2005–2010. Coopburo, LeuvenGoogle Scholar
  12. Van Opstal W, Gijselinckx C, Develtere P (2008) Entrepreneuriat coopératif en Belgique. Théories et pratiques. Acco, LeuvenGoogle Scholar
  13. Wouters J (1992) De coöperatieve vennootschap met beperkte aansprakelijkheid na de wet van 20 juli 1991 (The cooperative company with limited liability after the law of 20 July 1991). In: Geens K (ed) De coöperatieve vennootschap na de wet van 20 juli 1991. Biblo, Kalmthout, p 49Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre for social and cooperative entrepreneurship (CESOC)University College LeuvenLeuvenBelgium

Personalised recommendations