Category Archives: Admissibility

Case C-583/11 P Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami and others v European Parliament and Council – Standing to challenge legislative or regulatory acts?

The Court of Justice’s judgment of 3 October 2013 in Case C-583/11 P Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami and others v Parliament and Council is significant in three respects.

  1. First it makes clear what is – or rather what is not – a regulatory act according to Article 263 paragraph 4 in fine TFEU.
  2. Second it refuses to change its constant case-law on what “individual concern” means according to Article 263 paragraph 4 TFEU and in particular refuses to endorse a “substantial adverse effect” test.
  3. Third, it reaffirms the deep attachment of the Court to the system of review of the legality of acts of the EU institutions by the courts of the Member States in cooperation with the Court of Justice via requests for preliminary rulings.

We will deal with the definition of a “regulatory act” in this post first and the other two aspects of the case in separate posts later.

In its judgment in Case C-583/11 P, the Court held that a regulation adopted by the Parliament and Council was a legislative act and thus not a “regulatory act” within the meaning of Article 263 paragraph 4 TFEU. As a consequence, individual plaintiffs who seek the annulment of such an a regulation must demonstrate that they are “directly and individually” concerned by it. And in this case, they could not. Thus, the judgment is in┬áthe same vein as in Case C-274/12 P Telefonica we posted about here.

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Case C-274/12 P Telefonica: Standing – Regulatory Act not entailing implementing measures

What better way to inaugurate our blog than with a note on the important judgment of the Court of Justice of 19 December 2013 in Case C-274/12 Telefonica SA v Commission on the meaning of the phrase “and does not entail implementing measures” contained in Article 263 paragraph 4 in fine TFEU.

You will recall that one of the heralded changes brought about by the Lisbon Treaty was a change to the rules on the standing of individuals to challenge acts of the EU institutions. The (almost) constant case-law of the Court of justice since 1963 – Case 25/62 Plaumann [1963] ECR 95 – interpreted the phrase “of direct and individual concern” in Article 263 paragraph 4 (and its predecessor Article 230 paragraph 4 EC) rather narrowly. Too narrowly for some. Consequently, the Treaty was amended to obviate the need for the plaintiff to show “individual concern” if the act attacked is a “regulatory act” (on the meaning of that, see Case C-583/11 P Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami and others v Parliament and Council. Yes, we’ll cover that in a later post) and if that act “does not entail implementing measures”.

The Court’s judgment sheds light on when that latter condition is met. Continue reading