Constitutional Review of EU Law Cover Image

Контрола уставности правних аката Европске уније
Constitutional Review of EU Law

Author(s): Ljubica Đorđević
Subject(s): Law, Constitution, Jurisprudence, Constitutional Law
Published by: Правни факултет Универзитета у Нишу
Keywords: constitutionalism; constitutional court; constitutional review; European Union; ultra vires act; constitutional identity

Summary/Abstract: Due to the specific position of the constitution in the relationship between the national legal order and the EU legal order, the main question in this article is whether constitutional courts of the EU member states can perform the constitutional review of EU legal acts. In general, the EU law and the national law of a member state are two autonomous legal orders. The Court of Justice of EU decides on the validity of the EU law whereas the national constitutional court decides on the constitutionality of the national legal order. In general, neither can the Court of Justice decide about the national law nor can the constitutional court invalidate the EU legal acts. Yet, given the supremacy of the constitution and the obligation of the EU to respect the constitutional identity of its member states, constitutional courts of member states can, under some restrictions and in exceptional circumstances, perform the constitutional review of EU legal acts. In such cases, the constitutional review of EU acts is aimed at protecting the division of competences between the EU and the member state (ultra vires review), protecting the fundamental constitutional principles that are essential for the constitutional identity of the state, or protecting the fundamental rights. If the constitutional court declares an EU legal act to be unconstitutional, it cannot be implemented in the national legal order. The constitutional court’s decision does not affect the obligation of the member state to observe the EU law and to ensure its implementation. The legal anomaly that has emerged from the unconstitutionality of the EU legal act has to be resolved in the national legal order in the way that preserves the constitutionality but also ensures implementation of the EU law. In final consequence, the decision of the constitutional court can give rise to a constitutional amendment.

  • Issue Year: LI/2013
  • Issue No: 65
  • Page Range: 291-306
  • Page Count: 16
  • Language: Serbian