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The Law Applicable to Divorce as Test Ground for Enhanced Cooperation

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Enhanced cooperation was introduced in the Treaty of Amsterdam (1997). Despite a lot of academic ink being spilled, the instrument had, until recently, never been applied in practice. In June 2010, the Council reached consensus on authorising a group of Member States to pursue, in the framework of enhanced cooperation, common rules in the area of the law applicable to divorce. The present paper critically analyses this first precedent. For that purpose, the background to the policy area will be explored. Subsequently, the desirability of enhanced cooperation shall be assessed. Finally, the content of Rome III, and its effects upon Member States not participating in the initiative, will be analysed. The paper will attempt to formulate an answer to the question whether enhanced cooperation should be the new approach to harmonisation of family‐related Private International Law.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen, the Netherlands

Publication date: March 1, 2012


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