Rules and the European Union

Using rules for the purposes of domestic government gives rise to a host of difficult issues, as has been seen in previous chapters. A further set of questions is posed by governing at the European level. There is an array of rule-types that can be employed in pursuit of Union1 objectives and choosing between different kinds of rule requires that a number of judgements be made by European rule-makers and domestic officials. Such choices, in turn, give rise to questions of legitimacy.

This chapter looks at the variety of Community rules and their legal effects. It considers issues of rule selection and enforcement in the Community and assesses the legitimacy of Community rules when judged according to the bench-marks discussed in Chapter 3.


As with domestic governmental rules, it is possible to divide Community rules into those of primary, secondary, and tertiary type and attention here will again focus on secondary and tertiary rules.2

The European Communities (Amendment) Act 1993 gives effect to the Maastricht Treaty -- the Treaty on European Union (TEU) -- in domestic legislation. This chapter accordingly follows present convention by referring to the 'Union' when speaking in the most general terms but to the 'Community' or 'EC' in the context of the legal system, legal provisions, rules and institutions other than the Council. On the 1993 Act see P. Beaumont, European Communities (Amendment) Act 1993 ( 1993).
See generally e.g. D. Lasok and J. Bridge, Law and Institutions of the European Union, 6th edn. ( 1994), ch. 5; S. Weatherill, Cases and Materials on EEC Law ( 1992), chs. 1-3, 16. This chapter is concerned with Community enacted law and accordingly does not discuss non-enacted Community law or international agreements as sources of Community law. Non-enacted Community law is made up of the 'general principles of law' or the 'common law' of the Community which has been adopted by the European Court. International agreements have been said to be an 'integral part of Community Law' in Case 181/73, Haegeman v. Belgium [ 1974] ECR 449; but the issues they raise go beyond the scope of this discussion.


Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Cite this page

Cited page

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Rules and government


Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 331

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?