Federica Mogherini: Takes the oath before the Court of Justice of the European Union together with the College of Commissioners (Luxembourg) - EU monitor

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Wednesday 10 December: President Juncker and Commission Members will be sworn in by the Court of Justice of the EU

The news:

President Juncker and all Members of the European Commission will give the solemn undertaking, as laid down by the Treaties, before the Court of Justice of the European Union, in a formal sitting on Wednesday 10 December 2014 in Luxembourg.

With this solemn undertaking, the Members of the Commission promise to respect the Treaties and the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU, to carry out their responsibilities in complete independence and in the general interest of the Union. This includes the formal pledge not to seek or take instructions from any Government or from any other institution, body, office or entity, to refrain from any action that is incompatible with their duties or the performance of their tasks, and to respect their obligations both during and after their term of office. More in particular, Members of the Commission promise to respect the duty “to behave with integrity and discretion as regards the acceptance, after [they] have ceased to hold office, of certain appointments or benefits.”

The background:

The requirement for European Commission members to ‘give a solemn undertaking’ when entering in office is a long standing tradition. This provision was included for the first time in the Treaty establishing the European Economic Community (1957) and has been applied for every single Commission that took office from that date onwards. With every new Treaty, the wording of the solemn undertaking is slightly adapted to the new legal situation. Since the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon (2009), the text also includes a reference to the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights. The responsibilities and duties of Commission members are laid down in Art. 17 of the Treaty on European Union and Art. 245 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.

The event:

Wednesday 10 December 2014 in the afternoon (exact time tbc): Solemn undertaking by President Juncker and the Members of the European Commission before the Court of Justice of the European Union, Main Courtroom of the Court of Justice of the EU, Rue du Fort Niedergrünewald, L-2925 Luxembourg. Journalists wishing to attend the ceremony are invited to apply for accreditation to the Court of Justice of the EU at http://curia.europa.eu/jcms/jcms/Jo2_7054/.

The contacts:

Margaritis Schinas, +32 229 60524, Margaritis.Schinas@ec.europa.eu

Mina Andreeva, +32 229 91382, Mina.Andreeva@ec.europa.eu

Natasha Bertaud, +32 229 67456, Natasha.Bertaud@ec.europa.eu

Court of Justice of the European Union: Juan Carlos González Álvarez, +352 4303 2623, Juan-Carlos.Gonzalez@curia.europa.eu


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Court of Justice of the European Union (ECJ)

The Court of Justice interprets EU law to make sure it is applied in the same way in all EU countries, and settles legal disputes between national governments and EU institutions.

It can also, in certain circumstances, be used by individuals, companies or organisations to take action against an EU institution, if they feel it has somehow infringed their rights.

What does the CJEU do?

The Court gives rulings on cases brought before it. The most common types of case are:

  • interpreting the law (preliminary rulings) – national courts of EU countries are required to ensure EU law is properly applied, but courts in different countries might interpret it differently. If a national court is in doubt about the interpretation or validity of an EU law, it can ask the Court for clarification. The same mechanism can be used to determine whether a national law or practice is compatible with EU law.

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