EU Competences and the Damages Directive: The Continuum Between Minimum and Full Harmonisation

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook chapter


This chapter examines the Damages Directive and the issue of competence allocation between the Union and the Member States, by analysing the degree of comprehensiveness and detail of the Directive as well as future perspectives of full harmonisation on EU level. It is argued that the distinction between minimum
and full harmonisation is not particularly helpful. Instead, we suggest an alternative understanding of harmonisation in the area, based on a continuum.
This continuum emerges between Union competences on the one side of the
spectrum, and national procedural autonomy on the other. This new perspective
allows for a better understanding of the current and future functioning
of the Directive, and shows that in certain areas, EU competence provides a
firmer ground for comprehensive regulation, whilst in other areas, more deference to the Member States’ legal orders is necessary. We further argue that
such an analysis is useful since the substantive right to damages, recognised
by the ECJ, is broader than the provisions of the Directive. Accordingly, the
ECJ’s case-law will continue to regulate situations that are not covered by the
Directive itself.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Law


  • EU law, Damages, Harmonisation, Private actions, EU Competition law
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEU Competition Litigation
Subtitle of host publicationTransposition and first experiences of the new regime
EditorsMagnus Strand, Vladimir Bastidas, C Marios Iacovides
PublisherHart Publishing Ltd
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9781509922031, 9781509922024
ISBN (Print)9781509922017
Publication statusPublished - 2019 May 16
Publication categoryResearch

Publication series

NameSwedish Studies in European Law
PublisherHart Publishing