Black Lists in EU Contract Law
Boston University School of Law
October 25, 2011
THE INVOLVEMENT OF EU LAW IN PRIVATE LAW RELATIONSHIPS, Daniela Caruso, Dorota Leczykiewicz and Stephen Weatheril, eds., Hart Publishing, Oxford, 2012
Boston University School of Law, Public Law Research Paper No. 11-52
Oxford Legal Studies Research Paper No. 36/2013
The policing of consumer contracts relies mostly on general clauses. EU legislators, however, have occasionally resorted also to ‘black lists’, which displace judicial discretion and identify as void a finite set of contractual terms. Black lists epitomize an unusually high degree of supranational interference with both private autonomy and states’ sovereignty, and are therefore a privileged stand-point for investigating the EU private law project. This essay explores the regulatory, distributive, and discursive ambiguity of black lists, and posits that their normative desirability cannot be assessed without a systemic appraisal of the socio-political dynamics of European integration.
Keywords: black lists, consumer contracts, private law, European Union, harmonization
JEL Classification: K12, K20, K33
Date posted: October 25, 2011
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