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The relevance of Europe to English Law.

Extracts from this essay...

Introduction

The relevance of Europe to English Law European Economic Community established, with free movement, equal opportunities and improved living and working conditions for all European citizens. The founders of the EEC saw the gain in peace, stability, and economic development as outweighing loss of sovereignty. History of the E.U EU Law is based on the Treaty of Rome (1957). Since 1957, the European Economic Community now brings together 15 members states. The UK joined in 1973 by passing the European Communities Act 1972 that incorporates the Treaty of Rome into U.K. law, which the U.K. accepts obligations arising under it, or resulting from action taken by the EU institutions i.e. future as well as past EU law. The general objectives of the EEC under the Treaty of Rome were to promote throughout the community a harmonious development of economic activities, continuous and balanced expansion, and increase in stability, an accelerated raising of the standard of living and closer relations between the states belonging too it. There are four main institutions that implement E.U laws, which are: * European Parliament - Parliament is elected every 5 years. There are currently 626 MEPs.

Middle

"It is defined as general application, binding in its entirety and directly applicable in all member states". In Re Tachographs: EC Commissions v UK (1979), regulations was issued that tachographs to be installed in all road vehicles that were transporting goods. The U.K. government decided to give lorry owners a choice whether to install them or not. It was held by the ECJ that U.K. must apply regulations. The treaty makes clear regulations are directly applicable. Directives "Directives shall be binding, as to the result to be achieved, upon each Member State to which it is addressed, but shall leave to the national authorities the choice of form and methods". This shows that directives lay down an objective and then leave it to the individual Member State to decide how best to achieve it. In the U.K., this may take the form of an Act of Parliament, as with the Consumer Protection Act 1987 or by other methods available such as statutory instrument. Directives must be implemented within a set time limit. In Marshall v Southampton Health Authority (1986), the plaintiff was forced to retire at the age of 62 from her employment with the National Health Service.

Conclusion

Therefore, whatever limitation of its sovereignty Parliament accepted when enacting the ECA 1972 was voluntary. He pointed out that it was clear under the UK Act that it is the duty of the courts to override any national law found to be in conflict with any directly effective Community law. He also said that Parliament has always 'accepted the obligation to make appropriate and prompt amendments' to its own legislation when it was found by the ECJ to be defective in implementing EC Directives. In Bulmer v Bollinger 1974 Lord Denning also pointed out although he added that the UK could avoid loss of supremacy by repealing the ECA. This is legally possible but politically unlikely. The price for a say in the future of Europe, including the UK, lies in the grouping of what is left of national sovereignties. The decision in the Factortame case is only one in a line of cases showing a willingness by the ECJ to recognise that Community law gives rights as well as imposing obligations and that it does so in relation not only to member states but also to EU citizens, thus increasing the protection of individual rights.

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