Every Consumer or EU Citizen Only: Who Benefits from Consumer Protection Law? Cover Image

Každý spotřebitel, nebo jen občan EU: kdo je chráněn spotřebitelským právem EU?
Every Consumer or EU Citizen Only: Who Benefits from Consumer Protection Law?

Author(s): Václav Šmejkal
Subject(s): Law, Constitution, Jurisprudence
Published by: Univerzita Karlova v Praze, Nakladatelství Karolinum
Keywords: EU citizenship; consumer protection; EU law; fundamental rights; EU legislation for consumers

Summary/Abstract: In EU law notion of consumer is of crucial importance. Each EU instrument defines consumer for its own purposes. Despite being phrased in different ways, the vast majority of the definitions of consumer found in EU legislation share a common core. Accordingly, a consumer is a natural person, who is acting outside the scope of an economic activity. This paper is based on the hypothesis that this universally recognized definition of consumer in EU law, as individual acquiring goods or services for direct use or ownership rather than for resale or use in production and manufacturing, is not sufficiently accurate. The purpose of this paper is to analyse EU consumer protection law. The reason for this research is that EU consumer protection law development brought a shift in paradigm and currently there are strong interrelations between the role of the consumer and of the citizen of the EU. The paper is composed of six parts, each of them dealing with different aspects of EU consumer protection law. Part One is introductory and defines basic terminology used in the paper. Part Two examines the notion of consumer in EU law. Part Three is an analysis of relevant legal acts and it provides an outline of relevant case law. Part Four concentrates on problems resulting from fragmented EU consumer protection law. Part Five focuses on development of EU consumer protection law as well as on expected development in this field. Conclusions are drawn in Part Six. The main aim of the paper to analyse relevant EU consumer protection law and to examine notion of consumer under EU law has been reached. The paper has shown that there are similarities, but also differences, between rights granted to consumers and rights granted to citizens. Both have rights which have been extended in practice of Court of Justice of the EU. We conclude that EU consumer law is merging with EU citizenship.

  • Issue Year: 59/2013
  • Issue No: 2
  • Page Range: 67-77
  • Page Count: 11
  • Language: Czech