Web-Companion Essential EU Law in Text: Suggested solutions to the exercises

Please find hereinafter the suggested solutions to the 64 exercises contained in the book "Tobler/Beglinger, Essential EU Law in Text, 5th edition, HVG-ORAC 2020, ISBN 978-963-258-490-4".  To give you an idea how the exercises in the book are phrased, they have been added for the first three instances. Any comments or feedback are welcome.

Showing only entries concerning chapter Part 5, F. 3.. View all entries

Enforcement – Exercise 3

Page: 123 Chapter: Part 5, F. 3.

Suggested solution:

It is not correct to say that all national courts are obliged to request a preliminary ruling when they have questions on the interpretation of EU law. Rather, according to Art. 267 TFEU it is only national courts of last instance (which means that last instance in the given case) that are obliged to ask questions, except where the questions asked are irrelevant or have already been answered (acte éclaré) or where the answer to the question is obvious (acte claire). These exceptions are based on case law (CILFIT). Courts other than last instance courts may ask a question whenever it seems necessary to them in view of the case before them. Their discretion in judging this necessity is very broad and must not be limited by national law (Rheinmühlen Düsseldorf).

Neither is it correct to say that the Court of Justice is obliged to answer all questions, even though it is true that the Court is bound in principle to answer questions. There are limits to this basic obligation. First and quite fundamentally, the Court can (and should) declare a question inadmissible where it does not relate to EU law (e.g. Grado Bashir). Also inadmissible are questions that bear no relation to the facts of the case before the national court (e.g. Alabaster) or are hypothetical (e.g. Foglia). Finally, the Court will refuse questions that are not accompanied by sufficiently clear and encompassing information about the facts and the (national) law at issue in the case (e.g. Servatius).

[Relevant Charts: Chapter 12, in particular Charts 12/22-12/23]



Published: 13 August 2014