Business & Human Rights

Business and Human Rights is an inescapable boardroom topic in organisations. Not only does this topic play a major role in societal conceptualization, international business and human rights standards are also the driving force behind the concrete implementation on three fronts: procurement, investments and the organisation itself.



We provide advice concerning the requirements which apply or might apply to sustainable procurement. We also give advice on how to ascertain whether these requirements are compliant with international business and human rights standards and we point out which standard is the most relevant or the most attractive. In addition, we draw up contractual terms and conditions related to investments and for loan documents, joint venture agreements, and supply chain contracts. These terms make provision for ensuring human rights due diligence (in accordance with the requirements set out in the UN Guiding Principles) or other business and human rights standards.


Preventing business and human rights -related problems

To prevent business and human rights-related problems, it is important to perform an evaluation of human rights in relation to labour conditions and the environmental situation before making an investment, embarking on a project or entering into a contract with a new supply chain partner. We would like to help you think about ways in which such evaluations can be implemented properly. Finally, we provide advice concerning the procedures which are necessary for ensuring compliance with business and human rights standards within your own organisation as well.



Ruben van Arkel | Employment, Business & Human Rights | Partner

+31 70 5153 215 | |

Ruben advises and litigates in proceedings concerning all aspects of employment relationships. He assists employers with preparing for complex organisational changes and for reorganisations, Collective Labour Agreement conflicts, transfers of undertakings, strikes and individual issues like remuneration and dismissal. In addition, Ruben has a special interest in pension law, an area in which he is a specialist. Ruben graduated cum laude from Leiden University’s postgraduate specialist course on employment law. He is a member of the Dutch Employment Law Association’s Equal Treatment Working Group and public service law cluster coordinator of the journal AB. He regularly publishes in leading professional journals.


Edward Brans | Energy, Business & Human Rights | Legal counsel

+31 70 5153 232 | |

In his practice, Edward focuseson environmental liability under private and administrative law. In addition, he provides legal assistance in disputes concerning government liability (e.g. in the case of unlawful decisions, insufficient monitoring or inadequate enforcement). Edward also represents clients in cases aimed at countering and limiting the consequences of climate change; cases involving, for example, the use of geothermal energy (thermal energy storage), the storage of CO2 in geological formations and the realisation of designated flooding areas in the context of water management. In the area of environmental law, Edward has extensive experience in cases concerning soil contamination, asbestos or waste substances.

Iman Brinkman

Iman Brinkman | Energy, Business & Human Rights | Partner

+31 70 5153 753 | |

Iman Brinkman advises on energy projects, contracts and regulatory issues. Renewable energy projects are cornerstones of his practice. As a litigator, Iman is engaged in matters concerning energy-related topics, such as access to the gas and electricity markets, tariffs and trading issues. Iman acts for parties in every link of the energy chain. His clients include large (inter)national energy corporates, energy intensive industries as well as central and local governments. Iman lectures on energy law and frequently speaks at seminars. He also publishes regurarly. Iman is fluent in English, French and German.


Sebastiaan Cnossen | Business & Human Rights | Associate

+31 70 5153 245 | |

Sebastiaan Cnossen has been working as a lawyer at Pels Rijcken since 2016. He deals with the wide range of aspects related to European Law, particularly state aid and competition law.

Martijn Scheltema

Martijn Scheltema | Supreme Court Litigation, Business & Human Rights, Litigation and Arbitration | Partner

+31 70 515 39 08 | |

Martijn Scheltema is an international lawyer and maintains a leading Supreme Court practice, which includes setting-aside proceedings in connection with arbitration. Martijn deals with a wide range of corporate and procedural matters, as well as government related issues. In addition, he handles cases concerning commercial disputes and has extensive experience with international dispute resolution through arbitration. He is also interested in other forms of dispute resolution, particularly with respect to business and human rights issues. He regularly publishes and teaches all the mentioned fields.