The ‘Janus Face’ of the Court of Justice of the European Union: A Theoretical Appraisal of the EU Legal Order's Relationship with International and Member State Law

Göttingen Journal of international Law 4 (2012) 3, 677-691

15 Pages Posted: 26 Apr 2016

See all articles by Lando Kirchmair

Lando Kirchmair

Universiät der Bundeswehr Munich - Institute for Public Law and Public International Law; University of Salzburg - Institute for Public Law, European Union Law and Public International Law

Date Written: January 20, 2012

Abstract

For many years, the ECJ has postulated the autonomy of the EU legal order. At the same time, it has also stressed the importance of noting that the UN and the EU are distinct legal orders. In light of this situation, we have one and the same international organization applying two diametrically opposed theoretical doctrines. Regarding the inner relationship with its Member States, the ECJ proclaims a unified legal order based on the monistic doctrine. Dualistic arguments, in contrast, serve to separate the EU legal order from international law. This paper intends to clarify whether this obvious contradiction is due to a simple misinterpretation by the ECJ or is grounded in flaws within the almost 100 year old theories of monism and dualism which can no longer serve to explain the relationship between legal orders satisfactorily. The paper concludes that the situation cannot be characterized as black and white. However, in order to establish fundamental foundations, a clear theoretical line is essential.

Suggested Citation

Kirchmair, Lando, The ‘Janus Face’ of the Court of Justice of the European Union: A Theoretical Appraisal of the EU Legal Order's Relationship with International and Member State Law (January 20, 2012). Göttingen Journal of international Law 4 (2012) 3, 677-691, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2767385

Lando Kirchmair (Contact Author)

Universiät der Bundeswehr Munich - Institute for Public Law and Public International Law ( email )

Werner-Heisenberg-Weg 39
Neubiberg
Munich, 85577
Germany

University of Salzburg - Institute for Public Law, European Union Law and Public International Law ( email )

Kapitelgasse 5-7
Salzburg, 5020
Austria

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