Skip to main content

Court of Justice of the European Union

Court of Justice of the European Union, judicial institution of the European Union (EU). Located in Luxembourg, it was founded in 1958 as the joint court for the three treaty organizations that were consolidated into the European Community (the predecessor of the EU) in 1967.

The institution now consists of three bodies. The Court of Justice is the direct descendant of the original joint court. It is now composed of 8 advocates general and 27 judges—one judge from each of the EU nations. All members of the court are appointed for renewable six-year terms by agreement among the EU nations. The court interprets EU treaties and legislation. Although it may attempt to reconcile differences between national and EU laws, ultimately its decisions overrule those of national courts; they have tended to expand the EU's domain. Increased litigation over the years led to the establishment of a lower court, the General Court (1988, formerly the Court of First Instance), and a specialized civil service tribunal (2004); appeals to the Court of Justice are tightly restricted.

International law cases involving nations outside the EU are heard by the World Court in The Hague; the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, France, is recognized by the members of the Council of Europe and hears cases relating to the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Personal Freedoms.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Court of Justice of the European Union." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 24 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Court of Justice of the European Union." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 24, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/court-justice-european-union

"Court of Justice of the European Union." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved October 24, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/court-justice-european-union

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.