Smjernice u postlisabonskom europskom međunarodnom privatnom pravu
Dr. sc. Vilim Bouček, profesor Pravnog fakulteta Sveučilišta u Zagrebu, Trg Republike Hrvatske 14, 10000 Zagreb; firstname.lastname@example.org; ORCID ID: orcid.org/0000-0002-8677-5872
U radu se analiziraju učinci smjernica (direktive) EU-a u važećem europskom međunarodnom privatnom pravu (EUMPP) ustrojenom u Lisabonskom ugovoru iz 2007., koji je na snazi od 1. prosinca 2009. Autor u radu ističe da smjernica zbog svojih imanentnih specifičnosti kao izvor EUMPP-a, u odnosu na važeći EUMPP unificiran Uredbom Rim I, ima svoje posebne učinke kada je riječ o specijalnim europskopravnim kolizijskim pravilima za posebna pitanja ugovornog statuta, kao npr. onih iz ugovora o zaštiti potrošača. Na temelju sudske prakse Suda EU-a (Europski sud) u predmetu Ingmar iz 2000. autor također pokazuje važnost tumačenja Smjernice Vijeća 86/653/EEZ-a iz 1986. o samostalnim trgovačkim zastupnicima koja uz prisilne propise sadržava i nepisano ili skriveno kolizijsko pravilo te specifičnost odredaba te Smjernice u kojima Europski sud u predmetu Unamar iz 2013., idući korak dalje, objašnjava važnost prisilnih propisa kao pravila neposredne primjene, jednoga već dugo (i još uvijek) spornog pitanja u MPP-u.
Autor na temelju historijskog, logičkog i teleološkog tumačenja EUMPP-a u širem smislu, koje obuhvaća i harmonizirano autonomno nacionalno pravo država članica EU-a, zaključuje da se zaštita potrošača na unutarnjem tržištu umjesto jednostranim kolizijskim pravilima iz smjernica može uspješno ostvarivati na temelju čl. 3. st. 4. i čl. 6. st. 2. te čl. 9. st. 2. Uredbe Rim I o pravu mjerodavnom za ugovorne obveze iz 2008. Na taj način bi se mogla postići veća ujednačenost i pravna sigurnost u pogledu primjene mjerodavnog prava, koju narušava neujednačena primjena smjernica u nacionalnom harmoniziranom pravu država članica. Takvo tumačenje posebnih pitanja ugovornog statuta u EUMPP-u potvrđuje i posljednja generacija smjernica, kao npr. Smjernica EU-a br. 83/2011. od 25. listopada 2011. o pravima potrošača, koja više ne sadržava jednostrana kolizijska pravila, već na specifičan način upućuje na primjenu općih odredaba čl. 3. st. 4. i čl. 6. st. 2. te čl. 9. st. 2. Uredbe Rim I.
Ključne riječi: smjernica (direktiva) EZ-a/EU-a, europsko međunarodno privatno pravo, Lisabonski ugovor iz 2007., presude Ingmar i Unamar Suda EU-a
Hrčak ID: 280664
“Directives in the Post-Lisbon European Private International Law”
Vilim Bouček, Ph. D., Professor, Faculty of Law, University of Zagreb, Trg Republike Hrvatske 14, 10000 Zagreb; email@example.com; ORCID ID: orcid.org/0000-0002-8677-5872
This paper discusses the application of the EU directive as a source of European private international law with an emphasis on the post-Lisbon period in private international law of the member states.
After presenting the main features of a directive in private international law, such as the legal basis for those “measures” in secondary legislation, types of directive, their structure, purpose and the effects of a directive, the author points out the special importance of the directive expressed in the Ingmar and Unamar cases of the Court of Justice of the European Union. In both cases the legal framework was Council Directive 86/653/EEC of 18 December 1986 on the coordination of the laws of the Member States relating to self-employed commercial agents. In the Ingmar case of 2000, although lacking a (unilateral) conflict of law rule, the Court gave, by interpretation, the position of an unwritten (or hidden) conflict of law rule to a substantive law provision of the Directive. At the same time the Court determined that the provisions of Articles 17 to 19 are to be regarded as mandatory rules for the purposes of private international law. For the former EC legal order it was essential that a principal established in a non-member country (USA), whose commercial agent acts within the EC, cannot evade those provisions by freely choosing un-harmonized applicable law.
In 2013 Court of Justice of the European Union was again asked to deal with Council Directive 86/653/EEC of 18 December 1986 but in the new Unamar case with parties from Bulgaria (principal) and Belgium (commercial agent). Again, the Court confirmed the mandatory character of Articles 17 and 18 of the Directive and applied also Art. 7(2) of the Rome Convention of 1980. In his ruling it took into consideration the provisions of Art. 9(1) of the Rome I Regulation in which there is a definition of overriding mandatory provisions. Taking into account the terms of the mandatory provisions, but this time also consistent with the wording of Article 9(1) of the Rome I Regulation of 2008, the Court concluded that the law chosen by the parties to a commercial agency contract may be rejected by the court of another Member State before which the case has been brought in favor of the law of the forum, owing to the mandatory nature in the legal order of that Member State, only if the court of the forum state held it to be crucial to grant the commercial agent protection, going beyond that provided for by the directive, thus taking account of the nature of such mandatory provisions.
From June 1988 to today (2021) the EEC, the EC and the EU adopted a considerable number of directives as measures for the approximation of national law dealing mostly with consumer, but also employment and insurance issues, setting forth conflict rules. These sector-specific rules (or special conflict rules for certain (consumer) contracts) from the second-generation directives based on unilateral conflict rules prevail over the conflict rules of the Rome Convention of 1980 (Art. 20) and the Rome I Regulation of 2008 (Art. 23) in relation to particular matters, lay down conflict-of-law rules relating to contractual obligations. This situation creates a “labyrinth” of legal sources dealing with conflict-of-law rules on the national, (ex international) and on the European level. The described fragmentation of a situation where conflict-of-law rules are depressed among several instruments and where there are differences between those rules, contrary to Recital 40(1)-1) Rome I Regulation, has not been avoided. But at the same time the Rome I Regulation did not exclude the possibility of including conflict-of- rules with regard to particular matters (Recital 40(1-2) Rome I Regulation).
At the end of this paper the author answered one additional question: How to solve the problem of the lack of coordination between the Rome I Regulation of 2008 and other provisions of EU law, including national laws implementing those acts?
The first step may be to give a narrow interpretation of Art. 23 of the Rome I Regulation and to give precedence only to special EU conflict-of-law rules in relation to a particular matter. Stricto sensu it means, all provisions in the consumer directives which provide that, if a contract has a direct link to the territory of one or more Member States, EU law will apply, even if the parties have chosen the law of a third country, should not (always) be regarded as choice of law rules. Such a consideration has the potential to exclude the application of Art. 23 of the Rome I Regulation and rather apply Article 3(4) or 9(2) of Rome I. An example of such “conflict-of-law rule” is Article 22(4) of Consumer Credit Directive 2008/48 EC of 23 April 2008 on credit agreements for consumers (OJ EU L 133/66).
The second step is to reopen the lost political battle from 2008 of the European Parliament for a general precedence of all EU internal market law. Thirteen years after Rome I was adopted we have some additional arguments in favor of applying the general principle of supremacy in EU law without breaching “the proper functioning of the internal market” (Recital 40(2) of the Rome I Regulation). The first argument is general, known as the process of communitarization. Its result is not just Rome I (without Article 23) but also Directive 2011/83/ EU of 25 October 2011 on consumer rights, which is a new legal act in the post-Lisbon period of the EUPIL and among consumer directives should be seen as lex posterior. It is not for the first time that in such kind of Directive there is no unilateral conflict rule with the aim to protect all EU values by applying EU law. But the relevant provision lays down that the consumer should not be deprived of the protection granted by that Directive, and that, where the law applicable to the contract is that of a third country, Regulation Rome I should apply in order to determine whether the consumer retains the protection granted by that Directive (Recital 58 of the Directive on consumer rights).
Taking into consideration all above mentioned arguments, the author concludes: in the third decade of the 21st century the post-Lisbon legal practice regarding special EU conflict-of-law rules relating to particular matters contained in EU Directives on consumer protection should no longer prevail. The application of the Directives with or without a unilateral conflict rule in a situation with an international element should instead be safeguarded through the application of the provisions of Articles 3(4) and Art. 6(2) for consumer protection, and Article 9(2) of the Rome I Regulation of 2008 in order to determine whether the consumer retains the protection granted by that Directive.
Keywords: Directive EC/EU, european private international law, Lisbon Treaty of 2007, Ingmar and Unasur – ruling of The Court of Justice of the EU
Hrčak ID: 280664