Preliminary References by Public Administrative Bodies: When Are Public Administrative Bodies Competent to Make Preliminary References to the European Court of Justice?

Author (Person)
Series Title
Series Details Volume 15, Number 2, Pages 207-221
Publication Date May 2009
ISSN 1354-3725
Content Type


Under Article 234 of the EC Treaty a ‘court or tribunal’ of a Member State may refer questions on the interpretation and validity of Community law to the European Court of Justice. Article 234 does not define what is meant by a ‘court or tribunal’, but over the years the European Court of Justice has considered this notion in a large number of cases.

It follows from these cases that not only bodies which under national law are designated as courts or tribunals can make a reference for a preliminary ruling. Also, in a number of instances, organs that generally qualify as public administrative bodies under national law may be competent to make references. This article identifies the relevant criteria for determining whether an organ is competent to make preliminary references and it examines what types of public administrative bodies that normally may make such references.

Source Link
Subject Categories
Subject Tags ,
International Organisations