Source: All England Reporter
Publisher Citation: [2002] All ER (D) 32 (Jan)
Court: Court of First Instance of the European Communities (First Chamber)

Judges Jann (President), Sevon and Wathelet (Rapporteur)

Judgment Dates: 15 January 2002


European Community - Preliminary ruling - Jurisdiction of court - Austrian Regional Court sitting as a Commercial Court deciding whether statutory requirements with regard to maintenance of register of companies and disclosure of documents satisfied - Austrian court referring questions for preliminary ruling - Whether Austrian court exercising a judicial function - Whether European Court of Justice having jurisdiction to give preliminary ruling - EC Treaty, art 234.

The Case

When ruling in its capacity as a Handelsgericht (the Commercial Court) pursuant to the national provisions governing the obligations to disclose annual accounts and the annual report, the Landesgericht (the Regional Court) was not dealing with a dispute but was simply maintaining a register of companies. Accordingly it was exercising a non-judicial function and thus the European Court of Justice had no jurisdiction to give preliminary rulings concerning, inter alia, the interpretation of the EC Treaty and of the acts of the Community institutions.

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