European Competition Soft Law in European Courts: A Matter of Hard Principles?

20 Pages Posted: 16 Oct 2008  

Oana Andreea Stefan

King's College London – The Dickson Poon School of Law; King's College London

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Abstract

This article analyses whether and how competition soft law instruments are taken into consideration by the European Courts and the Advocates General. The quantitative analysis of the case-law reveals that even if arguments based on competition guidelines or notices were brought to court since the early days of European law, it is only during the last two decades that they have been taken seriously. The results of the qualitative analysis point to the fact that soft law instruments are considered by the European Courts an important and specific part of the body of European norms that they should use when deciding cases submitted for their judgment. Legal effects are recognised to these not legally binding instruments, but only when it serves the enforcement of hard, general principles of law.

Suggested Citation

Stefan, Oana Andreea, European Competition Soft Law in European Courts: A Matter of Hard Principles?. European Law Journal, Vol. 14, Issue 6, pp. 753-772, November 2008. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1284013 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-0386.2008.00443.x

Oana Andreea Stefan (Contact Author)

King's College London – The Dickson Poon School of Law ( email )

Somerset House East Wing
Strand
London, WC2R 2LS
United Kingdom

King's College London ( email )

School of Law
Strand
London, WC2R 2LS
United Kingdom

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