Natalie Sykes

Revoking Brexit: Can Member States Rescind Their Declaration of Withdrawal from the European Union?

Jens Dammann, William Stamps Farish Professor in Law, the University of Texas School of Law.* Note: This full-length Article appears in Volume 23, Issue 2 of the Columbia Journal of European Law, available soon in print and online via HeinOnline, LexisNexis, and Westlaw. Introduction On June 23, 2016 U.K. voters did the unthinkable and voted, by a narrow margin, for the United Kingdom to leave the European Union.[1] Such a move is entirely legal. The Treaty on European Union explicitly gives Member States the right to withdraw from the European Union.[2] Nonetheless, the outcome was unexpected.[3] Most pundits had predicted a victory for […]

European Perspectives on an Emergent Law of Robotics

Joanna Diane Caytas, JD Candidate, Columbia Law School 2017 As robots, machine learning, and intelligent automation shape ever more areas of our lives and jobs, many assume that, because machines have been around since centuries, laws applicable to robots will just require some well-adjusted analogies. But they would be wrong, and the need for a Law of Robotics is becoming increasingly more evident. Yet, the ideas proposed to get this started are mired in controversy. Human labor has been substituted most effectively by machines for well over two centuries now, and quasi-Luddite warfare against technology has been around just as long. […]

Trade, Investment, and Sustainable Development in CETA

By Emily Hush, J.D. Candidate 2018, Columbia Law School It is no secret that the planet is warming and that humans had something to do with it. Over the last 150 years, the global average concentration of carbon dioxide in the Earth’s atmosphere has increased to unprecedented dangerous levels and it continues to rise. As the climate becomes warmer, the world faces ocean acidification, sea level rise, decreasing biodiversity, and more extreme weather events. Sustainable development that “meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs,” is central to the international […]

EU Integration: The Military Dimension

By Lee Hill, J.D. Candidate, Columbia Law School The project of European integration is facing a potential crossroads as sociopolitical developments within and without the European Union place strain on institutional capacity. While economic and fiscal coordination issues rightly attract significant attention, Europe’s leaders have turned to the concept of greater security integration as a possible avenue through which to revive collective support for the EU.  In particular, the concept of supra-national military coordination for its potential to address major security concerns while also recommitting the EU member states in the wake of Brexit. Whether military integration can act as […]

Takeover Regulation in Europe and the United States: Will There Be Convergence within Europe and between Europe and the U.S.?

Dan Li, J.D. Candidate 2018, Columbia Law School Europe and the United States are both global economic powers, each leading in various areas. Over the years, economic integration between Europe and the United States increased significantly. The number of cross-border takeovers mushroomed. Much convergence was noticeable between the European and U.S. corporate governance systems. However, the regulatory takeover regimes in Europe and the U.S. remain starkly different. The prevailing view is that takeover regulations aim to maximize shareholder value – they are designed to encourage beneficial takeovers and minimize wasteful ones. To achieve the effect of encouraging beneficial takeovers, the […]

The Brexit Legal Challenge- A Summary

Haozhou (Nick) Qiu, J.D. Candidate 2018, Columbia Law School Introduction December 8, 2016 marked the final day of the UK Supreme Court’s hearing on Brexit and Article 50.  Presided over by an unprecedented 11 judges, the case concerned the appeal by the UK government against the November High Court ruling on the matter. The prior judgment stated that notification of an intention to leave the EU under Article 50 cannot be given based on royal prerogative alone; instead, formal legislation by Parliament is required. The Supreme Court hearing lasted four days and the court is expected to deliver its opinion […]

Group defamation and incitement in the Netherlands: The conviction of Geert Wilders

Tom Herrenberg* | PhD candidate and lecturer at Leiden Law School | Co-editor of The Fall and Rise of Blasphemy Law (Leiden University Press, 2016) (together with Paul Cliteur) 1. Introduction “Do you want more or less European Union?! … Do you want more or less Partij van de Arbeid (the Dutch center-left Labor Party, added)?! … And thirdly, although actually I’m not allowed to say this … Do you want, in this city and in the Netherlands, more or fewer Moroccans?!” These were the three questions Geert Wilders, the leader of the popular Dutch right-wing Partij voor de Vrijheid […]

Deconstructing Decriminalization

Casidhe McClone, Columbia Law School J.D. Candidate 2018 With 3.8% of the global population reporting some use of the drug in 2014, cannabis use has increased roughly 27% since 1998. While 3.8% may seem like a low number, it is still high enough to rank marijuana as the most cultivated, produced, trafficked and consumed drug in the world (using 2014 statistics). Considering the drug’s prevalence, some states have pursued an approach to regulation called decriminalization, through which the drug remains illegal but enforcement against users is deprioritized. One EU member, Portugal, took a bigger step 15 years ago and formally […]

Closing Pandora’s Box – is “welfare tourism” really a threat?

Gan Hui Zhen | JD Candidate, Columbia Law School 2018 When the EU Member States introduced EU Citizenship into the 1993 Maastricht Treaty, they arguably did not foresee that this would open up the Pandora’s box that eventually led to the creation of “welfare tourism.” After all, EU Citizenship as originally conceived only granted a small range of civil and political rights – most significantly, the right to vote, and the right to stand as candidate in elections to the European Parliament, as embodied in Article 20, Section 2(a) TFEU. However, EU Citizenship underwent a radical expansion, enabled by the […]

The Role of The European Union in the Healthcare Market

Margherita Anchini | PhD Candidate, Sapienza Law School (Rome) 1. Introduction The role of the European Union in the sphere of public services has always been problematic. Before the creation of a European concept of public service, national authorities had wide discretion to define the concept, and they exercised this power for the purpose of removing particular sectors from the application of EU law (especially competition rules). If some space for national discretion persists, it is clearly limited. In an international context, the concept of public service is a convenient shorthand for utilities and welfare services. In light of the […]

Tempted by an Apple: Europe’s Fall from Grace on Retroactive Taxation

Joanna Diane Caytas JD Candidate, Columbia Law School 2017 The post-2008 public debt crisis alerted the Eurozone – and Europe as a whole – to its dangerous love affair with the outdated notion that states cannot go bankrupt and therefore can take on quasi-unlimited levels of debt. Greece and Cyprus called this bluff in 2012-13 with dramatic consequences. Ever since, the continent has been in search of ways and means to bring under control unsustainable levels of sovereign borrowings that cannot be passed on to the banking and financial sector without laying the foundation for equally expensive bailouts. Just as […]

Would a closed European soccer league violate TFEU Article 101?

Aaron Rogoff | J.D. Candidate 2017, Columbia Law School | Editor-in-Chief Is European soccer headed for a competition law standoff? The monumental growth in revenue from the sale of TV broadcasting rights for Europe’s major soccer leagues has made membership in a top league a valuable economic right. European leagues differ from the “Big Four” U.S. sports leagues (the NFL, NBA, MLB, and NHL) in that league membership is not fixed. In the U.S., any change in team membership requires collective action by the ownership of all existing teams, whereas in Europe the makeup of each domestic league changes on an […]

Tax Inversions and the Lure of the “Celtic Tiger”

Caroline Ceriello, J.D. Candidate 2017, Columbia Law School With its remarkably low corporate tax rate of 12.5%, Ireland has become home to many companies formerly headquartered in the United States and seeking refuge from the 35% U.S. tax rate. In this context, a “tax inversion” usually refers to a corporate restructuring in which a U.S. corporation is acquired by a foreign holding company and assumes its foreign headquarters as a subsidiary. However, the entity remains listed under the U.S. issuer’s name in U.S. securities markets. As Professor Eric Talley emphasizes, there are three key unique features of the U.S. tax […]

Europe Grapples with Outdated Lèse-Majesté Laws

HY Kim, J.D. Candidate 2017, Columbia Law School Background On March 31, 2016, a German satirist, Jan Böhmermann, ignited a debate on the relevance of an arguably outdated statute by reading an obscene poem about the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on the weekly German satirical show “Neo Magazin Royal.” The poem included insults and made light of the very fact that the act of reciting such a poem would be considered illegal in Turkey. Little did Böhmermann know, this act was also illegal in Germany. After the conclusion of an investigation, launched by Chancellor Angela Merkel at the request […]

A Multilevel Approach to Publicity under European Law

Emmanouil Bougiakiotis, LLB, Democritus University of Thrace, Greece, Legal Intern at the Hellenic Data Protection Authority. All views expressed are personal. I. Introduction Publicity is a notion that becomes a matter of growing importance in European law, as it can affect numerous rights, such as. the rights to privacy, personal data, freedom of expression and, to some extent, the right of access to documents. However, almost no attention has been given to the conceptual issues with regard to the notion of publication and its characteristics, although they may be crucial in the outcome of a legal judgement. A characteristic example of […]

The U.K. Votes Out: What Happens Next

Colleen Baehrend, J.D. Candidate, Columbia Law School 2017   The process of unravelling the partnership between the one of the largest economies in the world and the most prominent trade bloc comes down to only 261 words: the text of Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty. With such brief guidelines and no precedent to work with, how exactly the divorce between the U.K. and EU will proceed is shrouded in uncertainty. Starting at the source, Article 50(1) gives Member States the right to withdraw from the EU “in accordance with its own constitutional requirements.” Thus, Article 50 must be invoked […]

AG Wathelet suggests how conditions for transfer of proceedings under Article 15 of the Brussels II bis Regulation should be interpreted

Dr. Agne Limante, Law Institute of Lithuania On 16th June 2016 the Advocate General Melchior Wathelet issued his opinion in Child and Family Agency (CAFA) v. J. D. In it, the Advocate General offered his position as to how conditions for the transfer of proceedings under Article 15 of the Brussels II bis Regulation should be interpreted. This opinion is of interest to those dealing with private international law and family law issues, and especially to those interested with the application of the Brussels II bis Regulation. The Brussels II bis Regulation establishes rules for jurisdiction, recognition and enforcement of judgments […]

Developing Blockchain Real-Time Clearing and Settlement in the EU, U.S., and Globally

Joanna Diane Caytas J.D. Candidate, Columbia Law School 2017 Framing the issue U.S. and European payment systems as we fondly know them are notoriously antediluvian. In China, all a consumer needs to do to send money is to input on their phone the beneficiary’s 16-18 digit account number, name, and bank name. Final credit is typically received in 5 seconds – not up to 5 hours, as for a U.S. domestic wire. Nor do Chinese consumers experience the grotesque fees charged for Western Union’s “instant money,” which in most cases still requires a trip to clear physical cash. There is […]

Risk Finance in the UK Pharma Sector: Why the Industry is Right to Fear a Brexit

Aaron Rogoff J.D. Candidate, Columbia Law School 2017 Editor-In-Chief, Columbia Journal of European Law Introduction – What is at Stake for UK Pharma The British pharmaceutical industry employs 183,000 people and accounts for annual sales worth £ 56 billion (€ 71.39 billion).  Its leaders have been vocal opponents of the UK referendum to leave the EU. Their comments refer to a number of negative implications for pharmaceutical companies, including the loss of their investment in achieving regulatory alignment for drug development under the European Medicines Agency (EMA), the cost and instability that will result if that regime must be revised […]

Final thoughts on (a potential) Brexit: Imposing (and accepting) constraints on sovereignty

by Brian Christopher Jones, Lecturer in Public Law, Liverpool Hope University. Justifications for constraints or losses of sovereignty have particular merits, some more defensible than others. In the UK’s case, there is little doubt that joining the EU has resulted in at least some loss of sovereignty (despite the fact that Parliament retains the right to repeal the European Communities Act 1972). Even though the UK knew going in that there were serious sovereignty implications, probably few could have predicted in 1972 that the EU would now resemble such a close political union, potentially on the verge of incorporating a federalist […]