Which courts are driving legal integration in the EU?

It has long been believed that judges at the lower echelons of the judiciary are the drivers of legal integration in the EU. Yet, Arthur Dyevre and Monika Glavina demonstrate in this blogpost that this is not what the data says, drawing on a new study by Arthur Dyevre, Monika Glavina and Angelina Atanasova. Their analysis of the entirety of preliminary references submitted by domestic courts from 1961 to 2017 demonstrates that although first instance courts did pioneer the preliminary ruling procedure in the early years of European legal integration, they have been overtaken by peak courts, which now dominate the formal interlocutory procedure. In fact, a relatively small club of apex courts accounts for the lion’s share of references submitted to the European Court of Justice. Continue reading “Which courts are driving legal integration in the EU?”

To refer or not to refer, that is the (preliminary) question. Why Member States’ judges do not participate in the preliminary ruling procedure

Over the last three decades, the EU preliminary ruling procedure has inspired a colossal amount of research. Despite all the work done on Article 267 TFEU, we still know very little about the motives driving individual judges to submit legal questions to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU). This is mainly because the research on the preliminary ruling procedure has focused too narrowly on country-level data, neglecting the fact that preliminary questions are neither the products of Member States’ governments nor the products of courts, but rather of individual judges. Continue reading “To refer or not to refer, that is the (preliminary) question. Why Member States’ judges do not participate in the preliminary ruling procedure”