An Introduction to European Union Legal Research: ALR: International Law January 28, 2004
Background on the Organization of the European Union:
EU as an official body = Maastricht Treaty (Nov. 1993).
Original Members : Belgium, France, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, and West Germany.
EU – 15 member political entity with a population of 378 million.
5 Major Institutions of the EU:
(1) European Commission (20 members);
(3) European Parliament;
(4) Court of Justice;
(5) Court of Auditors.
Other Important Institutions and Documents:
The Economic and Social Committee – http://www.esc.eu.int/pages/en/home.asp .
The Committee of Regions - http://www.cor.eu.int/en/index.html .
Treaty of the European Union - “Three Pillars” or Spheres of Operation.
Treaty goal to establish a more cohesive “intergovernmental entity” supporting:
(1) EC Law as well as economic institutions and activities;
(2) Common Foreign and Security Policy;
(3) Justice and Home Affairs.
Permanent executive body responsible for implementing treaties.
Develops policy and initiates legislation.
Transmits proposals to the Council of the European Union.
Major decision-making body of the EU.
Council of the European Union:
Power to adopt rules and important community policies.
Official acts include regulations, directives, decisions, recommendations and opinions.
Coordinates economic policies of Member States.
Court of Justice (ECJ) & Court of First Instance (CFI):
ECJ ( http://curia.eu.int/en/index.htm ) supervises uniform interpretation and application of EU law (treaties and secondary legislation).
CFI ( http://curia.eu.int/en/index.htm ) was established under the Single European Act of 1988 to lessen the ECJ’s load (only hears certain types of cases listed in Act).
Originally, had more advisory, rather than decision-making, powers.
The Maastricht Treaty has increased the powers of the Parliament and enlarged its legislative role.
Treaties Establishing the European Union:
Treaty on European Union , found at http://www.europa.eu.int/eur-lex/en/treaties/dat/eu_cons_treaty_en.pdf .
Signed in Maastricht in Feb. 1992 and came into force on Nov. 1, 1993 (main document of the EU / political arrangement of “the new Europe”).
Treaties are the primary legislation of the European Union, much like a constitution or civil code might be for national law.
Marquette EU Treaty Resources:
Treaty of Rome Consolidated and the Treaty of Maastricht (KJE4442.3.T73 1992).
The Treaty of Maastricht: from Conception to Ratification: A Comprehensive Reference Guide (KJE4443.1992.C67.1993).
Founding Treaties :
The Treaty Establishing the European Coal and Steel Community (the ECSC Treaty or the Treaty of Paris ) (261 U.N.T.S. 140) (1951).
The Treaty Establishing the European Economic Community ( EEC Treaty or Treaty of Rome ) (298 U.N.T.S. 11) (1957) created the EEC (European Economic Community).
The Treaty Establishing the European Atomic Energy Community (EURATOM) ( also referred to as the “Treaty of Rome”) (298 U.N.T.S. 167)(1957).
Other Important EU Treaties:
The Treaty Establishing a Single Council and a Single Commission of the European Communities (also known as the “Merger Treaty of 1965”) (4 ILM 776).
The Single European Act (25 ILM 506) (1987).
The Treaty on European Union (or the Maastricht Treaty) (31 ILM 247; 1992 O.J. (C191) 1) (1993).
The Treaty of Amsterdam (1997 O.J. (C 340) 1) (1999).
Rome, Maastricht, Amsterdam, and Nice:
The four cities where EU founding treaties were created in the past decade; the documents imparted changes to the EU “common market”.
Developed/altered different parts of the entities that used to be known as the “European Communities” and are now known as the “European Union”.
Treaties found at: http://www.europa.eu.int/abc/treaties_en.htm .
Official Citation of Treaties:
As a general rule, the basic treaties are published in the Official Journal, C Series .
European Court of Justice on Citation: http://curia.eu.int/en/instit/txtdocfr/index.htm .
More citation guides: EU - http://europa.eu.int/comm/translation/writing/style_guides/english/frame_index_en. htm and Oxford - http://www.law.ox.ac.uk/oscola/index. shtml .
Ex. #1: ESCS or Paris Treaty : Treaty Establishing the European Coal and Steel Community, Apr. 18, 1951, 261 U.N.T.S. 140.
Ex. #2: EEC or Treaty of Rome: Treaty Establishing the European Economic Community, Mar. 25, 1957, 298 U.N.T.S. 3.
Consolidated Versions of Treaties:
Intent is to show the earlier EU treaties as amended by later treaties.
Consolidated versions of EU treaties are available through EUR-Lex – http://www.europa.eu.int/eur-lex/en/index.html .
EU Treaties at Marquette Law:
Volume 4, European Union Law Reporter (CCH) , London: Sweet & Maxwell, 2000-. (KJE949.C655).
European Union Law Guide , ed. Philip Raworth. New York: Oceana Publications. (KJE949.E97).
Westlaw Database ID : EU-TREATIES (1951- ).
Lexis ID : Treaties & International Agreements / CELEX EU Law Database (1951- ).
Accession Treaties and External Treaties:
Accession Treaties between the EU and non-EU nations are published with related documents in the Official Journal .
External Treaties between EU and non-EU nations are published in the Official Journal L Series . For a list, see http://www.europa.eu.int/eur-lex/en/lif/ind/en_analytical_index_11.html .
Constitutional Reform :
The European Convention – http://european-convention.eu.int/bienvenue.asp?lang=EN .
Parliament website on the Convention – http://www.europarl.eu.int/comparl/conv/default. htm .
Intergovernmental Conferences (IGCs):
Summit meetings held to negotiate and propose important changes to the European co-operative framework.
Overview of conferences found at: http://europa.eu.int/en/agenda/igc-home/general/overview.html .
Retrospective database of conferences: http://europa.eu.int/en/agenda/igc-home/index.html .
Locating Information about the EU:
Carpenter, Liz. Legal Research and the Law of the European Communities (KJE928.J44 1997).
European Union in the U.S.: Research Tools – http://www.eurunion.org/infores/home.htm .
European Union Law: An Integrated Guide to Electronic and Print Research – http://www.llrx.com/features/eulaw.htm .
Locating Information About the EU:
Harvard Law School, Guide to European Union Legal Research – http://www.law.harvard.edu/library/ref/ils_ref/eu_guide/eu_legal_research. htm .
Raisch, Marylin. “European Union: Basic Legal Sources,” in Accidental Tourist on the New Frontier: An Introductory Guide to Global Legal Research (K85.A27 1998).
Reynolds, Thomas H. & Flores, Arturo A. Foreign Law: Current Sources of Codes and Basic Legislation in Jurisdictions of the World (K7073.R49).
Articles in EU law reviews and English language journals that focus on the EU.
The Yearbook of European Law contains annual surveys of legal developments, as well as articles and book reviews. European Journal of International Law ( http://www.ejil.org ).
The Jean Monnet Center ( http://www.jeanmonnetprogram.org ) contains European Integration Current Contents and provides the tables of contents to journals that are relevant for European legal research. Has a link to “ERPA” ( European Research Papers Archive ).