Other Law Sources

At the EU level the primary law sources is actually l'acquis communautaire. The judgments of the European Court of Justice are to follow the lines of the principles established in the Treaties (acquis communautaire). Along its existence, the ECJ proved to be somehow dynamic and interpreted the Treaties in a way which brought controversy between the social partners. Though it is not an EU institution as such, the European Court of Human Rights influences the political direction of the EU. For example, all EU members have ratified the Council of Europe's European Convention of Human Rights and accepted the jurisdiction of the European Court of Human Rights as a prerequisite for joining the EU. This means, for example, that all member states have abolished the death penalty before joining the European Union.

European Court of Justice (ECJ)

Acquis Communautaire

L'acquis communautaire is the entire body of European laws. This includes all the treaties, regulations and directives passed by the European institutions as well as judgments laid down by the European Court of Justice. The term is most often used in connection with preparations by the candidate countries to join the Union. They must adopt, implement and enforce all the acquis to be allowed to join the EU.

European Court of Human Rights