Constance Eckhardt-Descout

Associate


As an associate in our Competition & EU law team and our Banking and Finance Regulatory group in Brussels, I advise our clients on a wide range of matters relating to competition law and payment regulation.

My practice covers a broad range of issues relating to the regulation of payments, including advising major international card schemes, payments services providers (including issuers and acquirers), large international merchants, as well as other stakeholders in the payments value chain. I advise them on payments regulation, such as PSD2 (the update EU Payment Service Directive) and the 'level 2' documents under PSD2 such as the Regulatory Technical Standards (RTS) on Strong Customer Authentication, the EU Interchange Fee Regulation, the EU Cross-Border Regulation, the EU SEPA Regulation.

In competition law, my practice covers all areas of competition law (both advisory work and litigation). I love the challenge of first having to understand how different industries and sectors work before being able to apply the competition rules. The cases I enjoy the most are those that have a crossover between competition law and payment regulation and I have often advised on a variety of competition law issues in the payments sector.

I am also actively involved in the editorial committees of the Competition group and the Banking and Finance Regulatory group, for which I publish monthly articles to keep our clients up to date about latest news in key areas of their businesses.

Before joining Bird & Bird in 2017, I practised tax law in leading international firms in Paris and Frankfurt. I speak French, English and German.

  • I have advised major international card schemes, payments services providers (including issuers and acquirers), large international merchants, as well as other stakeholders in the payments value chain on payments regulation questions related to the application of PSD2 (the update EU Payment Service Directive) and the 'level 2' documents under PSD2 such as the Regulatory Technical Standards (RTS) on Strong Customer Authentication, the EU Interchange Fee Regulation, the EU Cross-Border Regulation, the EU SEPA Regulation.
  • In competition law, I particularly enjoy cases involving the interface between payments sector and competition law. I have advised on cartels in different sectors, on technology licensing, on research and development agreements. I have also worked on merger notifications at EU and national level.
Education
  • King's College London, Postgraduate Diploma
  • EFB (École de formation professionnelle des barreaux de la Cour d'Appel de Paris)
  • University of California, Berkeley - School of Law, LLM
  • Université Panthéon Assas (Paris II) / H.E.C Paris (École des Hautes Etudes Commerciales de Paris), Master's Degree
  • Université Panthéon Assas (Paris II), Master's Degree
Admissions
  • Paris Bar
  • Brussels Bar