Category Archives: Judicial review

Case T-355/13 easyJet Airline Co. Ltd. v Commission: Complaints, Abuse and National Competition Authority

The judgment of the General Court of 21 January 2015 in EasyJet Airline Co. Ltd. v Commission, T-355/13, EU:T:2015:36, contains some interesting things about:

  • the Commission’s discretion to reject complains about breaches of the competition rules and judicial review of that discretion on the one hand and how the Commission and
  • how national competition authorities interact in the framework of the “European Competition Network” on the other.

A few facts first.

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Case C-67/13 P Groupement des cartes bancaires (CB) v European Commission: Failure by the General Court to observe the requisite standard of review

The Court of Justice (“CoJ”) gave last week its judgment in Case C- 67/13 P Groupement des cartes bancaires (“CB”) v European Commission.

This post will focus of the issue of judicial review without going about a detailed presentation of the points relevant to a “by object” restriction and the application of Article 101(1) TFEU. Such presentation might follow in a later post.

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Case T-30/10 Reagens SpA v Commission: unsubstantiated pleas and length of proceedings

The General Court’s judgment in Case T-30/10 Reagens SpA v Commission EU:T:2014:253 (alternative link here) doesn’t really break new ground. But it does remind applicants of a few basic truths. In some ways you can sense the impatience of the Court with applicants who forget them.

First, the Court reminds everyone that if you make a plea, you have to argue it and substantiate it. Mere assertions don’t work.

Second, don’t just complain about the duration of administrative proceedings: show how it affected your rights of the defence.  Continue reading

Case C-43/12 Commission v Parliament and Council: Legal basis, opt out

There were nearly 30 000 deaths caused by road traffic accidents in the EU in 2012 (see table showing the evolution of road fatalities here. That’s a lot.

The Court of Justice’s judgment in Case C-43/12 Commission v Parliament and Council EU:C:2014:298 shows that attempts to put in place effective legislation to reduce the number of fatalities are frought with legal difficulties. Continue reading

Case C-231/11 P and C-233/11 P European Commission v Siemens AG Österreich a.o. – Joint and several liability

The Court of Justice (“CoJ”) gave on 10 April 2014 its judgment on appeal in the gas insulated switchgear case C-231/11 P. The dispute concerns a cartel relating to the sale of gas insulated switchgear (“GIS”), a heavy electrical equipment which is used to control energy flow in electricity grids. The case commenced with a leniency application; the Commission then initiated its investigation, which was concluded with the imposition of a fine on several undertakings. Parent undertakings were found jointly and severally liable with their subsidiaries. The Commission decision was challenged before the General Court, which in its judgment in Cases T-122/07 to T-124/07 Siemens AG Österreich a.o v Commission found, inter alia, that the Commission failed to determine the exact amount, i.e. the shares of the fine to by paid by each of the undertakings (both parents and subsidiaries) imposed severally and jointly on them. The General Court even went on to determine itself these shares of the fine to be paid by each undertaking. Its judgment was cross-appealed by the Commission and the undertakings.

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Case T-17/12 Hagenmeyer and Hahn v Commission: Health claims on foods and administrative procedures and deadlines

The circumstances of some cases seem, well… how can it be said delicately…. a little strange. Take the recent Case T-17/12 Moritz Hagenmeyer and Andreas Hahn v Commission, for example.

The two applicants had applied for a health claim – a reduction of disease risk claim in particular – to be authorised and included in an EU list of permitted claims in accordance with Article 14, 15 and following of Regulation 1924/2006 on nutrition and health claims made on foods. What was the reduction of disease risk claim in question ? Something to the effect that drinking lots of water regularly can reduce the risk of dehydration and a concomitant reduction of performance. 

Been thirsty, anyone ? And before you drown yourself in fluids, take note of the Boston Athletic Association’s warning on hyponatremia…. Trust me, you don’t want to suffer from hyponatremia. But I digress…

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Case C-209/13 United Kingdom v Council: Enhanced cooperation and transaction tax

The Court of Justice handed down an interesting judgment in Case C-209/13 United Kingdom v Council EU:C:2014:283 in what promises to be the first of a number of cases about the proposed common system of financial transaction tax. 

The United Kingdom took the matter to the Court of Justice as a precautionary matter. It lost.

What happened was this.  Continue reading

Joined CasesC-293/12 and C-594/12 Digital Rights Europe Ltd and others : Invalidity of Data Retention Directive

Boum ! The Court of Justice has declared that the Data Retention Directive, Directive 2006/24/EC, is invalid in today’s judgment in Joined Cases C-293/12 and C-594/12 Digital Rights Ireland Ltd and Kärntner Landesregierung and others.

Not only that, but the Court says some important things about judicial review, legislative discretion and compliance with the principle of protection of personal data: in matters of privacy and the protection of personal data, legislative discretion is reduced, therefore judicial review is strict.

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Case C-427/12 Commission v Parliament and Council – Judicial Review, Legislative Action and Reasonableness

Now and again a judgment comes out which has an importance that transcends the issue being litigated in the case. If we, the authors of this blog, were betting types, we’d bet that the judgment of the Grand Chamber of the Court of Justice of 18 March 2014 in Case C-427/12 Commission v European Parliament and Council is such a judgment.

Why do we think that ? Because it is, we think, the first judgment that adumbrates expressly a “reasonableness” test for judicial review of legislative activity. If we are wrong about that, please leave a comment setting us right (and I take responsibility for the oversight, not Maria).

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