Due process in competition cases: A step forward by the ECJ



The unique features of the European Commission’s competition proceedings, where the Commission acts as investigator, prosecutor and maker of decisions on guilt or innocence, have long been controversial. Due process problems have received more attention as fines in competition cases have increased greatly in recent years. The controversy intensified with the advent of the Lisbon Treaty in December 2009. Part of the disquiet of the legal profession was that EU Courts exercised limited judicial review: in a number of competition cases they did no more than verify whether the Commission had acted within its ascribed powers and followed its own fining Guidelines. Recent judgments by the European Court of Human Rights (including Menarini and Primagaz) confirm its growing interest in competition law matters. White & Case lawyers and others have written articles on this problem.

On 8 December 2011, in its judgments in Cases C-386/10 P Chalkor v Commission, C-389/10 P KME v Commission and C-272/ 09 P KME v Commission, the European Court of Justice (“ECJ”) pronounced on the level of judicial review which the General Court of the European Union (“GC”) must carry out when reviewing Commission decisions in competition cases. Although the ECJ rejected the appeals, it did not endorse the limited judicial review frequently applied by the EU courts and to the contrary prescribed rigorous standards of judicial review.

Please see full alert below for more information.

LOADING PDF: If there are any problems, click here to download the file.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© White & Case LLP | Attorney Advertising

Written by:


White & Case LLP on:

Readers' Choice 2017
Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:

Sign up to create your digest using LinkedIn*

*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.

Already signed up? Log in here

*With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name. Or, sign up using your email address.