Articles

The Growth of Collective Redress in the EU: A Survey of Developments in 10 Member States—the need to maintain safeguards

The Growth of Collective Redress in the EU: A Survey of Developments

The Growth of Collective Redress in the EU: A Survey of Developments in 10 Member States—the need to maintain safeguards

30.05.2017

In 2013, the European Commission adopted a Recommendation on Collective Redress. It invited Member States to adopt a collective redress framework by July 2016 that would include the features mentioned in the Recommendation and then by July 2017, to report to the Commission about the extent to which they had done so. On the basis of the Member States’ report, the Commission will assess whether further actions by the EU is required.

After some years of hesitation by national legislatures, it is now clear that collective redress or so-called class-action models are multiplying across the EU. A large majority of the Member States now have at least one way for claimants to combine their claims and sue an alleged harm-causing party or parties for damages before national courts.

Though collective redress presents advantages (mainly the potential time and cost efficiency of dealing with multiple, similar claims at the same time), such mechanism is not without risks. In particular, experience in non-EU jurisdictions has shown that the opportunity to aggregate claims can in some cases cause litigation abuse. This potential for abuse is more potent where the rewards of litigation far outweigh the risks meaning that there are significant financial incentives for filing weak (or even entirely meritless) claims.

The Commission’s 2013 Recommendation acknowledged this risk and proposed several safeguards that are intended to prevent abusive litigation by keeping the risks and rewards under control.

It is particularly appropriate to determine whether safeguards have been adopted at all, and whether and how those safeguards are being implemented in practice.

Against this background, the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform (ILR) has ordered a survey on the “state of play” of collective redress in 10 Member States (including all of the largest economies). The survey was coordinated by Sidley Austin LLP in Brussels. It called on the expertise of practitioners in all of the Member States surveyed, including Stibbe Amsterdam (Jeroen Kortmann) for the Netherlands and Stibbe Brussels (Oliver Stevens) for Belgium[1]. The survey identifies trends and issues that seem to be emerging across the EU. It finds that Member States have been accelerating the introduction of policies that simplify lawsuits, with the value and volume of claims increasing steeply. However, ILR’s study also finds that Member States, depending on the Member State in question, have failed to a larger or lesser extent to implement or maintain important safeguards for collective redress.

To view the PDF version of the survey, please click here.

 

Footnotes:

[1] Stibbe has not contributed to the editing of the report.

Team

Related news

13.09.2018 NL law
FlixBus-uitspraak over de strijd van nieuwe spelers op de openbaar vervoermarkt tegen het bestaande concessiemodel met exclusieve rechten.

Short Reads - Het verrichten van openbaar vervoer geschiedt op basis van een concessie. Een concessie is het recht om met uitsluiting van anderen openbaar vervoer te verrichten in een bepaald gebied gedurende een bepaald tijdvak, aldus artikel 1 van de Wet personenvervoer 2000 (hierna: de 'Wp 2000'). 

Read more

23.08.2018
ECJ: Facebook fan page administrator is a joint data controller

Short Reads - On 5 June 2018, the European Court of Justice ("ECJ") decided on several preliminary questions that were raised in an administrative proceeding between the German Data Protection Authority ("GDPA") and Wirtschaftsakademie Schleswig-Holstein GmbH ("Wirtschaftsakademie"), a German educational services provider that offers its services through a Facebook fan page. In its decision, the ECJ held, among other things, that Wirtschaftsakademie qualifies as a data controller ex Article 2 under d Directive 95/46/EC[1] ("Privacy Directive").

Read more

05.09.2018 NL law
Consultation on additional remuneration restrictions within the financial sector

Short Reads - A team from Stibbe has participated in the public consultation launched by the Minister of Finance on additional remuneration restrictions within the financial sector. In their response (in Dutch), the Stibbe team pointed out that there are several legal objections to the proposed measures. Furthermore, the team has raised questions regarding the necessity and legal justification for introducing these additional measures.

Read more

07.08.2018 NL law
Legislative proposal to protect trade secrets: update

Short Reads - On 5 July 2016, the EU Trade Secrets Directive came into effect (Directive 2016/943/EU). The directive intends to harmonise rules regarding the protection of undisclosed know-how and business information (trade secrets) across all EU member states. As the directive is not directly applicable in the member states, each member state must enact national implementing legislation.

Read more

07.08.2018 NL law
General Data Protection Regulation comes into effect

Short Reads - On 25 May 2018, the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) came into effect. The GDPR replaces the EU's prior directive governing the processing and transfer of personal data, which was in place since 1995. As a regulation, the GDPR is directly applicable in all 28 EU member states and thus removes the need for national implementing legislation. However, the GDPR allows member states discretion in certain areas, as a result of which national legislation may still be implemented. In the Netherlands, the GDPR Implementation Act came into effect on 25 May 2018.

Read more

Our website uses cookies: third party analytics cookies to best adapt our website to your needs & cookies to enable social media functionalities. For more information on the use of cookies, please check our Privacy and Cookie Policy. Please note that you can change your cookie opt-ins at any time via your browser settings.

Privacy – en cookieverklaring