and meet my friends as well…
by Istvan Csongor Nagy
The paper examines the recognition practice of US punitive awards in continental Europe from a comparative and critical perspective. After analysing the pros and cons of the recognition of punitive awards from a theoretical point of view, it presents and evaluates the judicial practice of the European (French, German, Greek, Italian, Spanish and Swiss) national courts and the potential impact of the 2005 Hague Choice-of-Court Convention and the Rome II Regulation. The paper ends with the final conclusions containing a critical evaluation of the present judicial practice and a proposal for a comprehensive legal test for the recognition of punitive damages.
You find the article here
Found two new important cases on the application of the EU Charter on Fundamental rights.
“In its judgment in AMS (15 January 2014), the Grand Chamber of the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled on whether the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union can apply in a dispute between private parties, holding that the Charter is applicable ‘in all situations governed by European Union law’.”
Available here or by clicking on the image above.
2) The Austrian Constitutional Court’s judgement on the Charter
I recently noticed that TWO Hungarian language articles we wrote together with Balázs Horváthy can be found on the internet about the Lisbon Treaty and the system of justice and home agffairs. The articles can serve as general introduction into the topic as well as for a comprehensive analysis on the institutions and legal system of JHA after Lisbon.
You can reach them here or by cliking on the image above.
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Észrevettem, hogy az intereneten elérhető KÉT írásunk a bel- és igazságügyi együttműködés Lisszaboni Szerződést követő rendszeréről. A munkák itt, vagy fenti logóra klikkelve érhetőek el, és a Jog, Állam politika c. lapban jelentek meg. Előzőleg a Lamm Vanda emlékkötetben ugyanennek a kérdésnek egy hasonló ám máshogyan strukturált vizsgálatát végeztük el (ld. a list of publications részt ezen az oldalon).
An article including a short interview with me was published in the Hungarian weekly journal Magyar Narancs (in Hungarian). I shortly summarized the domestic (copyright and criminal law) rules on ghostwriting of different works, including university theses. You can reach the article here or by clicking on the image above.
Pls find below an article by Anna Holmes originally published in the Time (here), I liked it a lot.
A new book by ‘Tiger Mom’ Amy Chua claims to explain why some groups fail and others succeed. We’ve heard this all before.
Let’s be clear, there’s nothing “new” about “the new racism,” the term Suketu Mehta uses to characterize the arguments of Amy Chua and Jed Rubenfeld in reviewing their new book, “The Triple Package.” Chua and Rubenfeld’s ahistorical and condescending-sounding treatise, which seems primed to satisfy the appetites of salivating marketing departments and morning show producers, argues that three traits — a superiority complex, insecurity, and impulse control — account for why immigrant groups like Asians and Indians thrive in America. Mehta argues that this constitutes a “new racism,” where some groups are praised in order to denigrate others — who apparently deserve to fail because they lack these traits.
But isn’t this just the same old racism — barely wearing new clothes? Racism has always come in a variety of costumes and cloaks. Put another way: bigotry, intolerance, discrimination and violence can be as covert as they are overt; can owe a debt as much to the seemingly reasonable intellects of academies and legislatures as the Neanderthal ranting of the ugliest segregationists and supremacists.
The umbrella term for these scourges, “racism,” is the physical and psychological genocide of generations of stolen people, yes, but it is also the root of modern-day drug policy and the for-profit, institutionalization of millions of black and brown men. It is the privileging of the needs of luxury real estate developers over a commitment to fair, safe, affordable housing. It is a member of Congress shouting “You lie.” And it is the wink-wink of the modern-day Republican party insisting that “yes, you built that.”
Racism is not, nor has it ever been, “new” — it is what this country was built on. It is as American as apple pie.
To be fair, Suketu Mehta says as much, writing that Chua and Rubenfeld’s “The Triple Package” contains within it ideas and conclusions about American achievement that have long been dressed up in other, perhaps more explicitly distasteful — genetic, religious, economic — disguises.
But even calling this slightly new shade, this culture-based argument for achievement, this soft bigotry of the myth of group Exceptionalism, “new” obscures the realities of injustice in America. It assigns to publicity-hungry individuals and pseudoscientists responsibility for a narrow-mindedness that is, in fact, long-established and structural — as political as it is personal. It suggests that there is an “old” racism we have somehow moved beyond. As the Los Angeles Times’ Ellen D. Wu says of the model minority myth, it “both fascinates and upsets precisely because it offers an unambiguous yet inaccurate blueprint for solving the nation’s most pressing issues.”
So let’s not call it “new.” Let’s acknowledge that even if, as Mehta says, the United States thinks it has moved beyond race, many Americans refuse to believe that “race” was ever an issue to move beyond in the first place. Let’s not only recognize but thoroughly explore this nation’s longstanding, stubborn and self-deluding need to believe that success is based solely — or mostly — on merit, not the more complex, messy stew of opportunity, visibility, class, physical privilege, social capital, psychological stamina, and yes, race, gender, and sexual orientation.
“The Triple Package” is not evidence of a “new racism.” It’s the same old garbage, in a slightly different, Ivy League-endorsed disguise.
“Even though the human rights court in Strasbourg and the convention it enforces are never far from the headlines these days, it is rare to find any mention of another important human rights agreement – the European Union’s charter of fundamental rights. This is understandable: although the charter was “proclaimed” by the EU institutions more than 13 years ago, it did not become legally binding until the Lisbon treaty took effect in December 2009. Even then, the charter applies only to EU member states when they are implementing EU law. That’s stressed in a discussion paper just published by the European Commission ahead of a major conference on EU justice policy next month (at which I have been invited by the commission to make a short introductory speech)…
…The ruling demonstrates once again that EU law trumps laws passed by parliament. Despite all the attention paid to human rights law, EU law is much more powerful. And it’s a decision that may make life more difficult for ministers. The foreign office will have to tell embassies in London that they can’t sack their domestic staff without paying the compensation to which those staff are entitled under EU law. But what’s wrong with that?”
You can reach the article here or by clicking on the image above.
The study can be reached here or by clickin on the picture below.
You can find a short summary of the program on the website of EESC.
I read an exremely interesting paper about legal reasoning, it was a really nice little overview of reasoning techniques, you find the article in The Law Teacher here, on page 20. It says, the nine reasoning techniques are the following (I cut them out of the article):
Apply the Rule’s Plain Language
• Apply the rule’s language by repeating a word or phrase, using a synonym or antonym, and characterizing facts.
• Apply law by comparing factual causes and effects to the rule.
• Apply law by comparing implications of a rule’s interpretation to the rule.
• Infer from facts to satisfy the rule.
• Infer to interpret codified law.
• Clarify law, facts, and issues to reason.
• Hypothesize a fictional situation where the issue and conclusion are clear. Reason by comparing the fictional situation to the case at hand.
• Characterize law to explain whether a rule is easy or difficult to satisfy.
• Analogize by comparing and contrasting precedent and statutes.
• Quantify chance of success.
• Quantify facts to prove the rule with adjectives, adverbs, and numbers.
Evaluate Opposing Arguments
• Evaluate factual and legal weaknesses in opposing arguments.
I wrote about the danger of mixing politicians and students at universities (in Hungarian). You can find the article here or by clicking on the image above.
Found an interesting piece written by our director on the character of the EU Charter on Fundamental rights. You can download it here or by clicking on the image above.
Enjoyed reading it (even though, in the European Union, the essence of an e-commerce contract is NOT the concept of characteristic performance as it can be found in the Rome Convention, but the solution which can be found in Art 3-4-6 Rome I regulation).
However, it still is a nice piece to read.
You can download the article here or by clicking on the picture.
One of our shorter articles was cited in a material on the relationship between the UK and the EU. I really enjoyed reading how they collected the different viewpoints, it is always nice to meet opposing opinions about the same problem.
You can reach the article here.
Recently, I published two new articles.
The first one, published in the Yearbook of Private International Law summarizes the different conflicting private international law provisions of the EU. It classifies the rules by making several subgroups in order to understand the attributes of different regulations/directives. In fact, it is similar to my former works, but instead of only finding the provisions, it tries to make groups and make some statements based on the findings.
For the table of contents, please click here.
You can find the article on ssrn here.
The second one, published in the Hungarian journal Külgazdaság, was written in Hungarian together with Katalin Raffai from Pázmány Péter Catholic University (I am really happy to have a common article with her). This is its abstract:
“Several new laws which deal with the international aspects of family law issues have been adopted in the European Union in the recent years. According to the statements of the European institutions, these rules are important in order to strengthen the background of the free movement of EU citizens. Numerous problems had to be solved, like the question of the law applicable in case of a divorce proceeding or the procedure of maintenance payments. The article summarizes the provisions of the most important legal sources, with special regard to the private international law aspects of such cases. Furthermore, it also deals with the basic differences between the related domestic substantive family law regimes.”
“Az Európai Unióban az elmúlt években több olyan jogszabály is elfogadásra került, amely családjogi kérdésekkel foglalkozik. E normák megalkotására a belső piac logikája miatt, az uniós polgárok szabad mozgásának biztosítása végett volt szükség. A szabad mozgás folyományaképpen rendezni kellett számos kérdést, így például, hogy a házasság felbontására milyen jogot alkalmazzanak, vagy a tartásdíjakat milyen keretek között kelljen fizetni. E szabályok nemzetközi magánjogi (más néven: nemzetközi kollíziós) normák, azaz azt határoznák meg, milyen eljárási rendben kell végrehajtani és végrehajtatni a tagállami anyagi jogi családjogi szabályokat, illetve részletesen leírják, mely állam jogát alapul véve kell eljárni. Az írás kimondottan az alkalmazandó jog megállapításával foglalkozik, ám röviden kitér az anyagi jogi háttérszabályokra is.”
You can find the article on my SSRN profile here.
E-Consumer Protection In the Us – The Same Jungle As In Europe
With the use of the Internet, a new form of contract has appeared: the electronic contract, which is concluded online. In most cases, two parties are present: a consumer, who is in a relatively exposed position and a business entity. This article focuses on the protections given to consumers in the US in these cases – i.e. electronic consumer law in the US – at both federal and state level (with special regard to New York state). Principal questions are the following: do consumers in the US receive the same protections as consumers in Europe when purchasing goods online? When we buy goods from the US here in Europe through the Internet and have them shipped over, do we receive the same protections as in Europe? And what options exist for protecting ourselves? What are the rules and remedies that help us? Last, but not least: what can we learn from the US system, if anything? Summarising substantive US provisions that may be relevant for Europe is also beneficial with an eye to putting continuously evolving European directive law into a broader perspective.
Pls find below the slides of a lecture on the weaknesses and possible development of EU consumer law.
The slides can be reached here.
The students continously protest against the present anti-democratic government. I recapped the present situation of Hungary with especial regard to the provisions of the European Union and the possible protection provided by the CoE.
A short Hungarian language summary can be found here.
I teach English Language Terminology of International Relations.
Opinion on the Fundamental Law of Hungary
Zoltán Fleck, Gábor Gadó, Gábor Halmai, Szabolcs Hegyi, Gábor
Juhász, János Kis, Zsolt Körtvélyesi, Balázs Majtényi, Gábor Attila
Professor Andrew Arato, New School for Social Research, New York,
Professor Gábor Halmai, Eötvös Loránd Tudományegyetem,
Professor János Kis, Central European University, Budapest
Pls find the material here.
In the European Union Regulation No. 593/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council on the law applicable to contractual obligations (the so called Rome I regulation) governs which law to apply to contracts containing international elements. With the continuing internalization of business activities, such rules have elementary importance. However, beside the unified rules of the regulation, numerous EU rules exist, which also have relevance. This is because of a provision in Rome I, which states that the regulation shall not prejudice the application or adoption of rules of the institutions of the EU which lay down rules concerning particular areas of contractual law. As an effect, several rules exist which override the provisions of Rome I. Thus, the present system of rules is fragmented, which may cause serious malfunctions in the legal practice. Most of these provisions can be found in consumer law directives, but other fields like employment law may also be of relevance. The article tries to collect these „hidden” provisions and analyse their effect on the Hungarian legal regime.
The article can be found here.
With use of the Internet, a new form of contract has appeared: the electronic contract, which is concluded online. Most of these involve a relationship of two parties: a consumer who is in a relatively vulnerable position, and a business entity. There are numerous examples of such transactions: youngsters downloading music from a website and paying for it – as they would in a music store. Many physical goods can also be purchased online – e.g. even though they live in Europe, the authors of this article regularly purchase books from the US. There are numerous ways such transactions can take place: one of the most obvious ways is buying goods on Amazon or eBay, on the website of a company, or purchasing goods using e-mail communication. The article attempts to summarize the choice of law rules affecting electronic contracts in the US and in Europe – i.e. to give an overview of which country’s or state’s law would apply to a contract concluded online, what the limits are on such a transaction and which state’s laws can protect us in case of a breach.
The article can be downloaded here or by clicking the image above.
Created an SSRN profile – in the future I will also add some new publications to it:
You can reach it here or by clicking the picture.
Pls find my public research profile here
Twelve countries have joined the EU since 2004, with Croatia’s accession expected in 2013. Tamas Dezso Czigler argues that while the Eurozone’s economic problems are currently dominating attention, the EU is also facing a growing crisis in the new accession countries, with a number of Eastern European states exhibiting anti-democratic tendencies. The article warns that problems in Eastern Europe also threaten to derail wider reform processes within the EU.
The article can be found here.
Tamas Dezso Czigler & Izolda Takacs: The Law Applicable To Contracts In The European Union – A Competition Between Rome I Regulation, Other Sources of EU Law and Directive Law As Implemented. CALIFORNIA INTERNATIONAL LAW JOURNAL, Vol. 20, No. 1 & 2, Spring/Summer 2012, 21-53.
In the early days then, there had been only fragmented and miscellaneous conflict-of-laws provisions in the acquis communautaire, focusing on specific areas. Most provisions were to be found in directives dealing with substantive law, i.e. the conflict-of-laws rules were merely extensions to the regulations in certain areas. Adopting such rules was common in the fields of consumer protection (i.e. consumer contract law) and insurance law. Numerous authors had criticized this earlier technique, which resulted in the disintegration of Community conflict-of-laws rules. There were indeed several disadvantages of the early approach. Firstly, the PIL body of law adopted for particular areas became opaque and convoluted. Secondly, in several cases the European legislator only provided a kind of “supra-collisional” rule, or to be more precise, a rule defending some provisions of Community law. That is to say, the Community PIL rules were only to be applied if doing otherwise, some substantive rules of EU/Community law would have been violated. This approach made the system unpredictable. Thirdly, the solutions for implementing these rules into MSs’ national statutes seem rather diverse and sometimes inconsistent with each other. Fourthly, EU/Community rules also disrupted existing and functioning national systems. This was the case for insurance law: EU/Community law reinvented effective national insurance law and in some places, rewrote the rules using ill-chosen constructs. Due to the above, the PIL aquis on insurance contracts became almost chaotic. Adopting regulations with a wider scope or the assembling of such regulations as was done in the Rome I Regulation can be considered to be a great leap forward, even if the methods of codification in the Regulation warrant some criticism. Last but not least, some “hidden” PIL rules were codified in directives: this made their application even more difficult, since the direct effect of directives not implemented by MSs is ambiguous.
The article can be downloaded here: CalBar_ILJ_Vol-20.1_v05
The Hungarian government changed the age limit for criminal prosecution, which was set to 12 years in certain cases. Another demagogue populistic measure without the intent of solving the real problems of the society. Beside homicide and some similar acts, robbery and despoliation will be punished earlier as well:
And for the age limit of certain countries see
We had a nice little workshop with some excellent scholars from Germany – Prof. Nettesheim from Tübingen and Prof. Bien from Würzburg. I spoke about the fragmentation of EU contract law provisions and the chances of unification (pls find my ppt slides below).
Recently I noticed that some materials from me are available on the internet (all were written Hungarian) :
- an article about private international law rules in EU directive law: http://www.mjsz.uni-miskolc.hu/201002/7_cziglerdezso.pdf
- my PhD dissertation about EU private international law: http://www.sze.hu/~smuk/DoktoriIskola/Fokozatszerzes/CzieglerDT/Disszert%E1ci%F3%20-%20V%E9gleges%20verzi%F3.pdf
- a recension of a fine book – PAUL CRAIG, GRÁINNE DE BÚRCA (eds.): The Evolution of EU Law: http://www.mta-ius.hu/iranytu/5_konyvszemle.pdf
Pls find my latest piece on LSE EUROPP
Hungary is sleepwalking into an authoritarian state. But the European Union is limited in the pressure it is able to exert.
Hungary is a member of the European Union (EU), but the country is sleepwalking into an authoritarian state, argueTamas Dezso Czigler and Izolda Takacs. In their third post on Hungary’s government, they explore measures that the EU could take in order to sanction the country, some which may be more effective than others.
Pls find the second article of the series on London School of Economics – European Politics and Policy (EUROPP) blog about the recent changes in Hungary.
Hungary is a member of the European Union, but the country is sleepwalking into an authoritarian state, argue Tamas Dezo Czigler and Izolda Takacs. In their second of three articles for EUROPP, they argue that the new governing coalition has overhauled the country’s electoral and judicial system, violated the independence of the Hungarian central bank and invaded citizens’ private lives.
Pls find my latest article on Open Democracy about the connections between Euro-scepticism, extremism and history in the UK and in Hungary:
“If we want to develop effective co-operation within and among the member states of the EU, history should be kept at a distance. Living in the past is not feasible, and this is equally true for Euro-scepticism, the application of human rights as well as the fight against racism and extremism…
In our opinion, the future of a state cannot be based solely on emotional foundations. For economic problems, economic measures must take centre stage. Exaggerated emotions should be consigned to where they belong: to museums.”
Pls find my latest article on London School of Economics – European Politics and Policy (EUROPP) blog about the recent changes in Hungary.
“Has Hungary become an authoritarian state? In their first of three articles on the Hungarian government, Tamas Dezso Czigler and Izolda Takacs argue that the country has become a distorted democracy on the brink of autocracy. Worryingly, the vast majority of Hungarians do not seem to be alarmed by these.”
An interview with me about my stay in New York (unfortunately in Hungarian. However, an English language translation will be available as well)
Please find my latest article Jog és realitás [Law and reality] in the Hungarian weekly journal Élet és irodalom [Life and literature] . I discussed the connection between EU fundamental rights policy and the new Hungarian regime (subscription required to read it)…
Pls find my latest article “Protectionism – The Side Effect of Hungarian Nationalism” on Social Europe Journal (Part of Guardian Comment Network)
“Hungary’s government has lately found itself in the cross hairs of critics both international and domestic. Its detractors point to two major issues. First is the barrage of potentially anti-democratic and positively useless laws that have been adopted over a single year, including a new constitution, media law, acts affecting the judicial and electoral systems, governance of the national bank and more – three hundred laws so far… Secondly, due to the economic crisis and the bad and unimaginative economic policies of the present and earlier governments in Budapest, fiscal policy has become subject to harsh criticism… However, besides fears for democracy and worries over economic problems, there is a third issue regarding Hungary which has been overlooked by the media – the conflict between the founding principles of the common European market and nationalistic protectionism: recently, free movement of goods into Hungary, the free establishment of companies and guaranteeing fair competition all seem to have been impaired. ”