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Conference: ā€˜eā€™ meets justice

The ‘Building EU Civil Justice’ project of the Erasmus School of Law (ESL) and the e-CODEX Plus project of the Dutch Ministry of Justice are organising the conference: “‘e’ meets justice”. On 2 and 3 May 2019, academics, IT and legal professionals will meet in Lisbon to discuss how to improve the collaboration between these communities in cross-border civil procedures. The aim of the conference is to offer a platform for different stakeholders to meet, engage in discussions and exchange ideas in order to find a meeting point between the legal world and the digital world, arriving at ‘e-justice’. Focusing on e-CODEX as a potential tool to improve the current situation, participants will be encouraged to propose ideas, engage in discussions and develop a mind-set to foster the future of e-Justice in the EU.

In recent years, cross-border (e-)commerce has increased rapidly. In particular, e-commerce enabled consumers to engage in online transactions with traders from outside their jurisdictions. This development resulted in a growing number of cross-border (online) disputes. While the number of disputes surges, there is a lack of suitable redress mechanisms for consumers, posing challenges to access justice. Consumers encounter obstacles to find a remedy for their cross-border claims, due to differences in language, increased costs, longer procedures, and various diverging legal procedures. It is important that justice embraces technology in order to support online and offline consumers. For a smooth functioning of the Internal Market, it is essential that the consumer has trust and confidence to make (online) cross-border purchases. Therefore, the European Union has been active in creating consumer protection legislation, both in substantive law and more recently in procedural law. Cross-border procedures exist, but their accurate functioning requires that infrastructure must be interlinked and coherent, and should enable more dialogue between stakeholders. In this regard, e-CODEX can be a valuable tool to provide the digital exchange of case related data, connecting parties and courts in a single interface.

You can find more information on the programme on: https://www.e-codex.eu/e-meets-justice-conference. Do you want to be part of this lively and thought-provoking dialogue? You can register now by sending an email to: aanmelden@minvenj.nl.

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Published: March 9, 2018

On 2 March Xandra Kramer gave a talk at a conference in Berlin on 'How European is European Private International Law?'. She focused on the how the judicial infrastructure can contribute to the application of European private international law rules, using among others aggregated statistics on the number of preliminary questions of national courts in the Member States and an inventory among experts and stakeholders in a number of Member States. One of the issues addressed was the rise of international commercial courts, in the Netherlands, Belgium, France, and Germany in particular, as is studied in depth by Georgia Antonopoulou in our ERC project. These courts are, however, not established with a view to facilitating the proper application of EU private international law rules.

Whereas specialized courts, special chambers within courts, specialised judges, court experts, judicial training, formal (e.g. EJN) and informal networks are useful to improve the application of these rules, it should be realized that in many courts these rules are only relevant in relatively a small number of cases, and measures should be cost-effective not to burden the available court budget. In addition, reflection is necessary as to the role of European private international law in view of current developments and  the political and social climate in the EU.