Friday, October 28, 2011

This Week in Luxembourg

This week, the Grand Chamber considered the problem of which court has jurisdiction over cases regarding tortious publications on the internet. The Court ends up splitting the difference: the ideal forum is the home forum of the defendant or – and this is new – the home forum of the plaintiff, but the case can also be brought anywhere else the content was published, although then the court can only award damages to the extent damage was incurred in that particular jurisdiction. (Sorry about that sentence…) Cf. art. 5(3) Regulation 44/2001. eDate v. X and Martinez v. MGN cf.

In Competition law, the Grand Chamber gave Solvay a big win. It found that the General Court had erred by rejecting Solvay’s arguments that its right of access to the file and its right to be heard had been infringed to the point of requiring the nullity of the Commission’s Decisions. As a result, both the General Court’s judgements (1 and 2) and the Commission’s Decisions (1 and 2) go in the trash bin. For those keeping score, the total fine was € 23 million. Solvay v. Commission and Solvay v. Commission

AG Cruz Villalón took a look at some Italian gambling law, and found that it probably favoured incumbents in a manner incompatible with the Treaties. (“Probably” because the national court would still have to have a look.) Some other aspects of the law, however, can stay in place as far as the AG is concerned. Costa and Cifone (NL, DE, FR, IT)

And finally, there are two AG opinions that are a bit more technical:

In Centre Hospitalier universitaire de Besançon (NL, DE, FR), AG Mengozzi interprets Directive 85/374 as allowing Member States to make the user (in this case the hospital or the doctor) liable for using a defective product in addition to the liability of the producer.

And in Söll (NL, DE, FR) AG Jääskinen looks at art. 2(1)(a) of Directive 98/8 to determine the correct definition of “biocidal products”. He opts for a broad definition, whereby the substance in question need not necessarily have a direct biological or chemical effect on the harmful organism in question, as long as it has an indirect effect, and as long as this effect is intended.

P.S. the archive of these emails is here.

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