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Towards European Procedural Primacy in National Legal Systems

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In the polycentric judicial architecture of the Community, there is a rich, constant interplay between national procedural rules and European interventions. In the making of the European legal order, EC law depends on national procedural law and therefore, substantive EC supremacy depends, existentially, on procedure. In this context, the author argues that the traditional sharply defined dichotomy of national procedural autonomy versus Community law effectiveness no longer reflects the implicit course of action laid down by the Court of Justice. Instead, the European legal order has moved, as a praxis, from national procedural autonomy to a more subtle combination of national procedural competence and European procedural primacy. The rationale behind this trend testifies both to the importance of the interrelationship between procedure and substantive law in the making of Europe and to the flexibility of procedural law; EC law depends on procedural law and procedure readily submits to the demands of a new legal order. In doing so, it also creates new choices and venues for European supremacy.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2003

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