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Constitutionalization of European Private LawXXII/2$
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Hans Micklitz

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780198712107

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198712107.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 27 September 2021

European Fundamental Rights, Private Law, and Judicial Governance

European Fundamental Rights, Private Law, and Judicial Governance

(p.102) 4 European Fundamental Rights, Private Law, and Judicial Governance
Constitutionalization of European Private Law

Aurelia Colombi Ciacchi

Oxford University Press

This chapter explores how and for which societal governance purposes fundamental rights are applied by national and European courts in cases concerning litigations between private parties. After having analysed how the horizontal effect of national and EU fundamental rights works and which policy goals it serves, this chapter attempts to answer the question whether this use of fundamental rights is legitimate and desirable. This question is looked at from the background of a normative-individualistic understanding of fundamental rights. The analytical part of this chapter includes the proposition of a new doctrine: the double indirect horizontal effect of fundamental rights. This could help the Court of Justice develop its jurisprudence towards a better consideration of the non-economic human interests protected by EU fundamental rights. This chapter comes to the conclusion that, in applying fundamental rights horizontally, both the Court of Justice and the national courts seem to regularly give preference to certain societal policies over others. However, this does not mean that fundamental rights are instrumentalized. On the contrary, in the analysed cases, the pursuit of societal policies goes hand in hand with the strengthening of the basic interests of all individuals directly concerned. This confirms the normative-individualistic paradigm.

Keywords:   fundamental rights, horizontal effect, private parties, judicial governance, societal policies, normative individualism

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