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EU Directives


allanb
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It happens sometimes on this forum (and others) that somebody quotes French law which seems to support his view, and somebody else quotes an EU Directive that seems to say something different. 

I think I have read somewhere that that in EU language there's a difference between a "directive" and a "regulation"; a Regulation takes effect immediately and supersedes national law; a Directive is only a requirement for countries to enact law, and becomes effective in each country only when the law has actually been enacted.  I can't find confirmation of this now.  If it's correct, there wouldn't be any point in quoting an EU Directive in (e.g.) an argument with a policeman about traffic law or car documents.

Does anyone know?

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[quote user="Sunday Driver"]There's no point in quoting EU directives to anyone... [/quote]

Thanks for the link.  That (or something like it) must be what I dimly remembered reading.

So actually they have no value except to keep forum arguments going for as long as possible?

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[quote user="allanb"][quote user="Sunday Driver"]There's no point in quoting EU directives to anyone... [/quote]
Thanks for the link.  That (or something like it) must be what I dimly remembered reading.

So actually they have no value except to keep forum arguments going for as long as possible?
[/quote]

As the time limit for incorporation into national law comes closer, directives become more pertinent in all arguments.[;-)]

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"..........Proposals (for new legislation) emanating from the Commission are passed to the Councils of Ministers, the European Parliament and the Economic and Social Committee for opinion and possible amendment. Once it has been adopted by the Council of Ministers, the proposal then becomes law - either as a new regulation or as a directive. Regulations are immediately applicable throughout the Community, whereas Community directives require enabling legislation to be passed by the governments of the Member States, and in this sense of 'indirect'. Delays can of course occur between the issuing of a new directive by the Commission and its becoming law in a Member State". *

I wrote the above in 1990 but I don't think the procedure has altered much since, in spite of continuing changes to the so-called co-operation procedures between the European Commission (the bureaucracy in Brusels), the Council of Ministers (periodic meetings of heads of state and government), the E C S C (an advisory grouping representing social/trade union, business and 'other' interests) and the European Parliament. As I recall Community regulations are generally (slight) amendments to existing directives that have already become national laws in each Member State.

*Presenting your case to Europe' Mercury Business Books, 1991, p 32.

P-D de R.

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A directive is a requirement for a State to do something - It is not incorporated into that States law until the State passes legislation - and sometimes the problem is that the State does not pass legislation that correctly impements the directive - so you get rights under EU directives that you can't take advantage of.......UNLESS............If the wrong you are complaining of is done by what is called "an emanation of the state" - not as easy to define as beyond the blinding obvious - ie a Gov't department - you are able to rely upon the directive as binding upon that body  - not binding upon a private body though!

Bit complicated, but Directives do give rights to citizens against State bodies by a back-door route - but I wouldn't like to pay the legal fees to enforce it!!

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