The Locus Standi of Private Applicants Seeking Review of Community Acts: Is Criticism of the European Court of Justice Reasonable?

Vitalija Tamavičiūtė


Every developed legal system must have a mechanism for testing the legality of measures adopted by its institutions. The European Community, which is a community based on the rule of law, is not an exception, inasmuch as neither its member states nor its institutions can avoid a review of the conformity of their measures with the basic constitutional charter—the Treaty. Otherwise the constitutional principle ubi ius ibi remedium would be infringed and the rights provided to individuals would become merely declaratory. The wording of Article 230(4) imposes limits on the standing of private applicants as it requires the applicant to be directly and individually concerned. These requirements, due to the very narrow and restrictive interpretation in the jurisprudence of the ECJ, are very difficult to meet. Therefore, the rules for standing have long been criticized as violating the principle of effective judicial protection and, in some cases, equivalent to the denial of justice.


action for annulment; locus standi; direct concern; individual concern; effective judicial protection

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"Societal studies" ISSN online 2029-2244 / ISSN print 2029-2236