EC Law on the Formation of Contract – from the Common Frame of Reference to the ‘Blue Button’

Hans Schulte-Nölke 1 , 1
  • 1 Professor of Law, University of Bielefeld, Director of the Centre for European Legal Practice.

Abstract

One of the core aims of the European Community is the establishment and the better functioning of the Internal Market. As the term ‘market’ is only a metaphor for the place where contracts are prepared and concluded, one would expect that the vast majority of EC law deals with the preparation and formation of contracts. Until now, this is evidently not the case. But there are already quite an impressive and increasing number of individual Directives and other EC law sources which deal directly with contract law. Establishing and improving the Internal Market must indeed also mean improving the possibilities to negotiate contracts and to perform them and, in particular, as far as possible to remove obstacles which result from the fact that there are national borders between potential contract parties situated within the EU. EC law on the preparation and formation of contracts must have the function to permit and to facilitate marketing, advertising, concluding and performing contracts, in particular also for cross boarder situations.

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This journal deals with contract law and serves as a pan-European platform for discussion and analysis. Since the early 2000s when this journal was created, European Contract Law has come to encompass an increasingly comprehensive body of law. The importance and breadth of the field and the methods and questions involved are such that ERCL has established itself as the specialised European journal in this area.

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