Politics

Corona laws: Lawyers consider changes to the amendment to be necessary

The lawyers want to be exempted from another measure contained in the amendment: For contact tracing, companies, organizers and associations are to be obliged to store data from guests, visitors, customers and employees for 28 days and make them available to the health authorities if necessary . With the lawyers, however, this would conflict with their duty of confidentiality. You cannot oblige them to pass on data, it says in the expert opinion.

When it comes to data protection, “the greatest care” would always be required, warned Wolff – and therefore demanded that it be made clear in the legal text and not only in the explanations that a customer or visitor may not be denied entry or a service if he is processing his or her Data does not agree.

The lawyers see another sensitive issue with the planned provision (in the Epidemic Act) on prevention concepts for events and meetings. The authorities should be able to check compliance “also by on-site inspection”. However, this should by no means affect private clubs, noted Wolff. Because that would be a massive – and currently not objectively justified – encroachment on the law of associations and assembly.

In general, with the corona measures, the trade-off between health protection and the protection of fundamental rights and freedoms was very successful. “Here and there, however, you overshot the mark” – for example with the residence bans. According to the VfGH ruling, a general repayment of all penalties imposed on the basis of the repealed provisions is now required, says Wolff.

The state owes it to its citizens to protect them from unlawful prosecution. This aim would also justify the repayment of some of the fines that were rightly imposed. Because “the masses of unjustified fines would have to be repaid”. And a review of each individual case would be too much effort, stated the President of the Austrian Bar Association.

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