Implementing regulation

This legally binding act of the European Union is directly applicable in all member states of the European Union, akin to national legislation. Implementing regulations take precedent over national legislation in case the two contradict one another.

Implementing regulations are always limited in scope. Their aim is to ensure uniform implementation of European legislation, and the subject-matter of any implementing regulations serves that goal alone.


Implementing regulation in detail

Area of application

Implementing regulations are directly applicable and need not be transposed into national legislation. This ensures implementation takes a similar shape in each individual member state. Member states are required to implement implementing regulations.

Implementing regulations can only be issued when European legislation stipulates further measures are called for to ensure uniform implementation of said legislation by the member states. The mandate for implementing regulations is limited to what is necessary for uniform implementation, no additional, complementary or adjoining rules can be set. Implementing regulations deal with very specific policies and often address highly technical details of legislation.

Legal entities may make a direct appeal to implementing regulations in a court of law in relation to both a state as well as other legal entities.

Adopting implementing regulations

The EU has two procedures by means of which implementing regulations can be established. In both procedures the Commission initiates and ultimately decides on implementing regulations. A committee of representatives of the member states can either advise on or has to approve of implementing regulations.

Implementing regulations in the field of common foreign and defence policy are initiated and decided upon by the Council.


Legal framework

The implementing regulation is based on the Treaty on the functioning of the European Union (TfEU).

  • instrument: part six TfEU title 1 chapter 2 section 1 art. 291


Further information