Research Guide for United States Users to Materials From the Court of Justice of the European Communities

1 Colum. J. Eur. L. 559 (1995)

Jochen Streil. Head, Legal Data-Processing Service of the Court of Justice.

Jacqueline Suter. Administrator, Research and Documentation Division of the Court of Justice.

The purpose of this Research Guide for United States users1 is to describe the materials published by the Court of Justice and the Court of First Instance. Its emphasis is on: (I) judgments, orders and opinions, (II) other publications and (III) databases.


A. Reports of Cases before the Court of Justice and the Court of First Instance

The Reports of Cases before the Court of Justice and the Court of First Instance are the only authentic source for the texts of decisions of the Court of Justice and the Court of First Instance. Published in the official languages of the Communities, the series is cited in English as ECR (abbreviation for European Court Reports).

The Reports are issued in several parts each year. At the beginning of each part is a list of cases published in that part, arranged under an index of subject matter with headings such as agriculture, free movement of goods, social policy and state aid. Individual judgments and orders are preceded by a summary. These summaries have no binding force and are not to be regarded as  an   authentic interpretation   of the    decisions  summarized. Since 1 January 1994, the Report for the Hearing (or the Report of the Judge- Rapporteur) is no longer published; in the case of proceedings before the Court of Justice, these documents may be obtained, in the language of the case, upon request, from the Court Registry. The final volume of the year now contains a chronological table of the cases published for the year, a table of cases classified in numerical order, an alphabetical index of parties, a systematic table containing all the summaries with their corresponding chains of head-words for the cases reported, a table of Community legislation cited and an alphabetical index of subject matter.

In the United States, the Reports can be obtained from UNIPUB, 4611-F Assembly Drive, Lanham, MD 20706-4391; tel. toll free (800) 274 4888; fax (301) 459 0056. A complete set of the Reports is available in French from 1954 to towards the end of 1994. The Reports are available in English for the period 1954- 1991 inclusive, 1992 (part) and 1994 (part), but not yet 1993. Prices are based on the Luxembourg price. For 1992, this is ECU 140, excluding VAT. The price for 1993 and 1994 is ECU 170, excluding VAT, for each year. In April 1995 ECU 1 was worth approximately 1.3 United States dollars.