Volume 45 (2008) / Issue 2
The Court of Justice has been alluding to abuse and abusive practices in its rulings for more than thirty years.For a long time however the significance of these references was unclear. Not many commentators delved into this issue, and the few that did doubted whether the references by the Court to abuse amounted to the development of a general Community principle of abuse of law. This state of affairs has changed radically within the last few years, largely due to jurisprudential developments within the field of tax. This paper analyses the evolution of the Court’s case law on abuse, from the first cases on free movement of services, to the latest rulings on taxation. It then considers whether the case law developed by the Court, on what has been designated as “prohibition of abuse of law”, does indeed amount to a new general principle of Community law.
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