Short Reads

Tick-tock: no reset of the appeal clock for amending Commission decision

Tick-tock: no reset of the appeal clock for amending commission decis

Tick-tock: no reset of the appeal clock for amending Commission decision

04.04.2019 NL law

The European Court of Justice recently upheld the General Court's order finding that metal production and recycling company Eco-Bat had submitted its appeal outside of the appeal term. Eco-Bat had relied on the term starting from the date of the European Commission's decision correcting figures for the fine calculation in the initial infringement decision.

The Court of Justice ruled, however, that such an amending decision does not reset the appeal period if the company could have understood the grounds and content from reading the initial decision. If uncertain, companies should therefore take the safer route and calculate the appeal term from the date of the first Commission decision.

On 10 February 2017, the Commission notified Eco-Bat of their infringement decision in the car battery recycling cartel. Almost two months later, an amended decision was issued. This amendment corrected the omission of Eco-Bat's value of purchases, which was used when determining the basic amount of the fine in the initial decision. Eco-Bat appealed the decision within the required two-month term, calculated from the notification of the amending decision.

The General Court found that the value of purchases, as used by the Commission to calculate Eco-Bat's fine, could have been understood by Eco-Bat from reading the initial decision. The clock had therefore started ticking upon notification of the first infringement decision, not upon notification of the amending decision. Eco-Bat's action was therefore dismissed for having been brought out of time.

The Court of Justice, in rejecting Eco-Bat's appeal, took as a starting point the General Court's finding that the correcting element could have been ascertained by Eco-Bat by reading the initial decision. The two-month term starts to run from the time the addressee becomes acquainted with the content and grounds of the decision. Even if the amending decision corrects more than a purely formal omission, the decision does not affect the appeal period if the undertaking could have understood its grounds and content.

This judgment clarifies that the category of re-issued Commission decisions that do not restart the clock for submitting an appeal with the General Court includes more than purely formal changes. Adding figures that could have been understood by the addressee is such a change. If uncertain, companies should take the safe route and calculate the appeal term from the date of the first Commission decision.

 

This article was published in the Competition Law Newsletter of April 2019. Other articles in this newsletter:

Team

Related news

09.01.2020 NL law
Deleting WhatsApp chats during dawn raids may cost you dearly

Short Reads - Companies should be aware that the Dutch competition authority (ACM) will not only examine electronic records and emails, but can also check WhatsApp messages during dawn raids. The ACM recently imposed a fine of EUR 1.84 million on a company for non-cooperation with a dawn raid; its highest fine so far for non-cooperation. Several of the company’s employees had left WhatsApp groups and deleted chats before handing over their mobile phones for inspection.

Read more

16.01.2020 NL law
De Amsterdamse milieuzone voor brom- en snorfietsen: voertuigen van een bepaald jaar weren is mogelijk bij ontbreken van een redelijk alternatief

Short Reads - ABRvS 20 november 2019, ECLI:NL:RVS:2019:3865 Deze blog is het vierde deel in een reeks Stibbeblogs over gemeentelijke milieuzones. In 2017 oordeelde de Afdeling over de milieuzone voor personen- en bestelauto’s met dieselmotoren in Utrecht. In 2018 presenteerde de staatssecretaris van Infrastructuur en Waterstaat haar beleid voor harmonisatie van uiteenlopende gemeentelijke milieuzones. Een jaar geleden maakten wij in een FAQ de balans op over de harmonisatie van milieuzones.

Read more

09.01.2020 NL law
Access to the file in Dutch competition procedures: too little too late?

Short Reads - Companies beware: the ACM’s and European Commission’s approach to access to the file are not aligned. According to an interim relief judge, the ACM cannot be forced to grant a company access to a broader set of documents in competition procedures. A potential error in the administrative procedure can be remedied before a court at a later stage. This is different to the right to access to the Commission’s file during administrative procedures, as acknowledged in EU case law.

Read more

10.01.2020 NL law
Is het mededingingsrecht de reddingsboei van zwakke zzp’ers?

Articles - Het toenemende aantal zzp'ers heeft ook mededingingsrechtelijke gevolgen. Volgens de ACM werkt de markt namelijk niet goed als zzp'ers door lage uurtarieven onder het bestaansminimum komen. Jan Truijens Martinez en Simone Evans bespreken in het Tijdschrift voor Arbeidsrecht in Context hoe eventuele belemmeringen die het mededingingsrecht opwerpt bij de bescherming van zzp'ers kunnen worden beperkt en of het mededingingsrecht eigenlijk wel het juiste instrument daarvoor is? 

Read more

09.01.2020 NL law
Competition rules and globalisation to face off in 2020

Short Reads - 2020 will likely revolve around the question whether competition rules should yield to globalisation and digitisation, with suggestions ranging from mere tweaks to competition rules to complementary regulation. Greater cooperation across data protection, consumer protection and competition law appears inevitable. Speedier solutions in more informal settings may become a reality, alongside more frequent use of behavioural remedies.

Read more

Our website uses functional cookies for the functioning of the website and analytic cookies that enable us to generate aggregated visitor data. We also use other cookies, such as third party tracking cookies - please indicate whether you agree to the use of these other cookies:

Privacy – en cookieverklaring