Volume 48 (2011) / Issue 1
The article explores the question whether, in the light of the concepts of procedural and remedial autonomy of the Member States, the case law of the ECJ on the enforcement of consumer rights derived from various Consumer Protection Directives is consistent with its case law on the enforcement of individuals’ rights under other branches of EU law.
The authors begin by examining the case law of the ECJ on the concepts of procedural and remedial autonomy of the Member States in the context of the enforcement of individuals’ rights derived from EU law in general. Subsequently, the authors proceed with an analysis of the application of those concepts in the most recent case law on the enforcement of consumer rights derived from the Consumer Protection Directives. This part distinguishes between cases concerning national legislation and procedures guaranteeing a higher level of consumer protection than required by those directives (e.g. cases C-509/07, Scarpelli, C-484/08, Caja de Ahorros, C-358/08, Aventis Pasteur) and cases in which national rules fall short of the minimum standards of protection provided for under those directives (e.g. cases C-489/07, Messner, C-215/08, E. Friz, C-511/08, Handelsgesellschaft Heinrich Heine, C-240/98 to C-244/98, Océano Grupo, C-473/00, Cofidis, C-168/05, Mostaza Claro, C-429/05, Rampion and Godard, C-40/08, Asturcom Telecomunicaciones, C-227/08, Martín Martín, C-243/08, Pannon GSM, C-137/08, VB Pénzügyi Lízing). It is submitted that, while the former series of cases reflects a standard application of the concepts of procedural and remedial autonomy, the latter series of cases reveals, in certain regards, a more consumer-oriented approach.
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