JHA Council (7-8 June 2012): EU Regulation on Successions and Wills Adopted – General Approach on Brussels I Recast – CESL

The Justice and Home Affairs (JHA) Council of the EU, currently holding its meeting in Luxembourg (7-8 June), adopted today the successions regulation (Regulation on jurisdiction, applicable law, recognition and enforcement of decisions, acceptance and enforcement of authentic instruments in matters of succession and on the creation of a European certificate of succession): see the Council’s note and RAPID press release. The final text can be found in doc. no. PE-CONS 14/12.

Denmark, Ireland and the United Kingdom do not participate in the regulation, pursuant to the special position they hold in respect of the Area of Freedom, Security and Justice, while Malta voted against the adoption, expressing concerns on the uncertainty that the new rules will create in the legal regime of international successions, vis-à-vis current Maltese law (see the Maltese statement in the Addendum to Council’s doc. no. 10569/1/12).

As pointed out in a previous post, an agreement had been reached by the Council and the Parliament in order to adopt the new instrument at first reading: a history of the legislative procedure, along with the key documents, is available on the OEIL and Prelex websites. Once the regulation is published in the OJ, the whole set of Council’s documents relating to the procedure, currently not available, will be disclosed. An interesting reading on the legislative history can also be found on the IPEX website, which gathers the opinions of national parliaments of the Member States on draft EU legislation.

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Two other PIL items are set on the agenda of the JHA meeting on Friday 8 June. The Council is expected to approve a general approach on the Brussels I recast (see the state of play in Council’s doc. no 10609/12 and the draft text set out in doc. no 10609/12 ADD 1), and to hold a debate on the orientation and the method to handle the further negotiations on the proposal for regulation on a Common European Sales Law (CESL). As regards the latter, here’s an excerpt from the background note of the meeting:

The first discussions on the [CESL] proposal have made it clear that this file entails divergences among member states. Several member states had therefore requested that a political debate at the level of the Council takes place before proceeding further with technical discussions.

To this end, the Presidency submits a discussion paper to the Council (10611/12) proposing that  ministers address questions related to the legal basis and the need for the proposal, its scope (focus  on sales contracts concluded on-line) and whether to start work on model contract terms and conditions.

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