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Policy Options for Progress Towards a European Contract Law: Comments on the issues raised in the Green Paper from the Commission of 1 July 2010, COM (2010) 348 final

Rabel Journal of Comparative and International Private Law (RabelsZ), Vol. 75, No. 2, pp. 371-438, April 2011

DOI: 10.1628/003372511795316845

Max Planck Private Law Research Paper No. 11/2

69 Pages Posted: 1 Feb 2011 Last revised: 3 Mar 2013

Jürgen Basedow

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law

Gregor Christandl

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law

Walter Doralt

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law

Matteo Fornasier

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law

Martin Illmer

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law

Jens Kleinschmidt

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law

Sebastian A.E. Martens

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law

Hannes Rösler

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and Private International Law

Jan Peter Schmidt

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law

Reinhard Zimmermann

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law

Date Written: January 27, 2011

Abstract

In its position paper on the Commission’s Green Paper on policy options for a European contract law (COM (2010) 348 final, 1 July 2010), the Max Planck Working Group welcomes initiatives to overcome the fragmentary and inconsistent state of contract law in Europe. However, the Working Group criticizes that the Commission did not sufficiently consider the issue of the legislative competence of the EU. At present, an optional instrument (opt-in) drafted as a Regulation (option 4) and based on Art. 352 TFEU seems to be the preferable option. Such an instrument raises a number of questions regarding its choice and its area of application which have been addressed by the Working Group. An optional instrument should be granted a broad scope of application, including both B2B and B2C contracts, domestic contracts, intra-Union cross-border contracts as well as contracts with parties resident in third states. Its scope should neither be limited to cross-border contracts nor to contracts concluded online. However, the recommendation of the Institute is subject to an evaluation of the substantive quality of the instrument which is not yet available. In this regard, an important preparatory work for any future European contract law, i.e. the Draft Common Frame of Reference (DCFR), has already been criticized by some members of the Working Group. Also, any legislative initiative should be preceded by a proper review of the existing acquis and should be coordinated with the current work on a Consumer Rights Directive.

This article is published in this Research Paper Series with the permission of the rights owner, Mohr Siebeck. Full-text Rabel Journal articles are available via pay-per-view or subscription at IngentaConnect, a provider of digital journals on the Internet.

Keywords: Optional Instrument, Optional Regime, Common Frame of Reference, DCFR, European Contract Law, Policy Options, Toolbox, Blue Button, Harmonization & Contract Law, Internal Market, EU Competences in Private Law, Choice of Law, Rome I Regulation

Suggested Citation

Basedow, Jürgen and Christandl, Gregor and Doralt, Walter and Fornasier, Matteo and Illmer, Martin and Kleinschmidt, Jens and Martens, Sebastian A.E. and Rösler, Hannes and Schmidt, Jan Peter and Zimmermann, Reinhard, Policy Options for Progress Towards a European Contract Law: Comments on the issues raised in the Green Paper from the Commission of 1 July 2010, COM (2010) 348 final (January 27, 2011). Rabel Journal of Comparative and International Private Law (RabelsZ), Vol. 75, No. 2, pp. 371-438, April 2011; DOI: 10.1628/003372511795316845; Max Planck Private Law Research Paper No. 11/2. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1752985

Jürgen Basedow (Contact Author)

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law ( email )

Mittelweg 187
Hamburg, 20148
Germany

Gregor Christandl

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law ( email )

Mittelweg 187
Hamburg, D-20148
Germany

Walter Doralt

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law ( email )

Mittelweg 187
Hamburg, D-20148
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.mpipriv.de/de/pub/wissenschaftler/affiliates/doralt_walter.cfm#i48541

Matteo Fornasier

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law ( email )

Mittelweg 187
Hamburg, D-20148
Germany

Martin Illmer

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law ( email )

Mittelweg 187
Hamburg, D-20148
Germany

Jens Kleinschmidt

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law ( email )

Mittelweg 187
Hamburg, D-20148
Germany

Sebastian A.E. Martens

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law ( email )

Mittelweg 187
Hamburg, D-20148
Germany

Hannes Rösler

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and Private International Law ( email )

Mittelweg 187
Hamburg, D-20148
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.mpipriv.de/en/pub/academic_staff/affiliates/roesler_hannes.cfm

Jan Peter Schmidt

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law ( email )

Mittelweg 187
Hamburg, D-20148
Germany

Reinhard Zimmermann

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law ( email )

Mittelweg 187
Hamburg, 20148
Germany

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