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The Effectiveness of Judicial Enforcement of the EU Consumer Protection Law

  • Emilia MišćenićEmail author
Part of the Balkan Yearbook of European and International Law book series


Through its case law, the CJEU has developed and established various legal institutions and principles guaranteeing the effectiveness of EU law including consumer protection law. Although much time has passed since the CJEU required from Member States’ courts to give the “Community (now: Union) law its full effect within the framework of the judicial systems of the Member States”, more recent cases demonstrate the serious struggles of the courts when it comes to the enforcement of the EU consumer protection law. The effectiveness of the judicial protection of consumer protection rights is sometimes undermined by the most basic questions, such as who qualifies a person as a “consumer” in a national civil law dispute, the court or the claimant? Moreover, recent studies of the European Commission demonstrate that the national courts are barely aware of their duty in an ex officio application of the EU consumer protection law. With the exception of the courts’ duty to examine the unfairness of contract terms in business-to-consumer (B2C) relations of their own motion, they seem to be reluctant to the idea of an ex officio application of consumer protection law. This paper examines the position of courts in this new environment of allegedly more effective enforcement mechanisms and questions to what extent the Member States’ courts are obliged to apply the EU consumer protection law ex officio.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of LawUniversity of RijekaRijekaCroatia

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