Reading the Signs: the Political Agreement on the New Transatlantic Data Privacy Framework

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The President of the United States, Joe Biden, and the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, announced last Friday, in Brussels, a political agreement on a new Transatlantic framework to replace the Privacy Shield. 

This is a significant escalation of the topic within Transatlantic affairs, compared to the 2016 announcement of a new deal to replace the Safe Harbor framework. Back then, it was Commission Vice-President Andrus Ansip and Commissioner Vera Jourova who announced at the beginning of February 2016 that a deal had been reached. 

The draft adequacy decision was only published a month after the announcement, and the adequacy decision was adopted 6 months later, in July 2016. Therefore, it should not be at all surprising if another 6 months (or more!) pass before the adequacy decision for the new Framework will produce legal effects and actually be able to support transfers from the EU to the US. Especially since the US side still has to pass at least one Executive Order to provide for the agreed-upon new safeguards.

This means that transfers of personal data from the EU to the US may still be blocked in the following months – possibly without a lawful alternative to continue them – as a consequence of Data Protection Authorities (DPAs) enforcing Chapter V of the General Data Protection Regulation in the light of the Schrems II judgment of the Court of Justice of the EU, either as part of the 101 noyb complaints submitted in August

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