Today it was in the news that Meta (owner of facebook) was fined 390 million Euros for GDPR violation by the Irish data protection officer. They were also told they have 3 months to change their user interaction so that it will satisfy the GDPR. Meta said they will appeal the decision.

What is the status of the fine during the appeal process? Does Meta need to put € 390m into some kind of escrow account now? Do they need to change their user interaction now? Or do they count as innocent for now and can continue as before until the appellate court comes to a decision one way or another (presumably this will take a few years)?

1 Answer 1


The court has discretion to stay the punishment pending an appeal - but it rarely happens

As of now, Meta is guilty and must serve its punishment. That is, it must pay the fine to the Irish government by the time required. They can, like everyone else, ask the court to agree a payment plan - if they can demonstrate that the do not have enough liquidity to pay the fine and keep operating it will usually be granted.

The appeals court can, but rarely does, stay the judgement pending the appeal. This only happens where it is plain on the face of the record that something clearly went wrong with the trial - we’re talking severe and obvious judicial misconduct here.

If they succeed in overturning the conviction or having the fine reduced, any overpayment will be refunded with interest. There is no need for escrow because the Irish government is not an insolvency risk.

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