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DCFR - ett steg mot en social avtalsrätt?

Liljequist Aspelund, Alida LU (2012) JURM01 20102
Department of Law
Abstract (Swedish)
Under många år har diskussioner förts kring upprättandet av en enhetlig europeisk avtalsrättslig lagstiftning. Harmoniseringsprocessen har pågått såväl på lagstiftningsplanet som på akademisk nivå. Draft Common Frame of Reference, DCFR, initierades som ytterligare ett steg mot denna tillnärmning av lagstiftning. Nämnda referensram utgör hittills soft law men kan, helt eller delvis, komma att ligga till grund för ett mer bindande regelverk, CFR. Uppsatsen ämnar behandla icke-diskrimineringsprincipen i ljuset av avtalsfriheten med utgångspunkt i DCFR. Tidigare har skyddsbestämmelser såsom icke-diskrimineringsstadganden huvudsakligen fallit under kategorin för mänskliga rättigheter. Följaktligen har främst stater kunnat ställas inför rätta... (More)
Under många år har diskussioner förts kring upprättandet av en enhetlig europeisk avtalsrättslig lagstiftning. Harmoniseringsprocessen har pågått såväl på lagstiftningsplanet som på akademisk nivå. Draft Common Frame of Reference, DCFR, initierades som ytterligare ett steg mot denna tillnärmning av lagstiftning. Nämnda referensram utgör hittills soft law men kan, helt eller delvis, komma att ligga till grund för ett mer bindande regelverk, CFR. Uppsatsen ämnar behandla icke-diskrimineringsprincipen i ljuset av avtalsfriheten med utgångspunkt i DCFR. Tidigare har skyddsbestämmelser såsom icke-diskrimineringsstadganden huvudsakligen fallit under kategorin för mänskliga rättigheter. Följaktligen har främst stater kunnat ställas inför rätta vid kränkningar. I de s.k. model rules som the Study Group on a European Civil Code lägger fram i DCFR, betonas emellertid vikten av skyddsbestämmelserna inom privaträttens domän, i synnerhet relaterat till det avtalsrättsliga området. DCFR avser således att integrera den sociala skyddslagstiftningen i avtalsrätten. Den inre marknaden åberopas ofta som ett argument för att harmonisera detta rättsområde. Harmoniseringen görs då i syfte att eliminera väsentliga skillnader som inte kan lösas på grundval av partsautonomi, och som därmed bl.a. kan ge upphov till snedvriden konkurrens. Inom unionsrätten är avtalsfriheten en central grundsats, varpå det marknadsekonomiska samhället vilar. Emellertid kan avtalsfrihetens korrelation till de sociala aspekterna och skyddsreglerna på den inre marknaden ifrågasättas, samt vilken prioritetsordning som råder när dessa elementära principer står i strid med varandra. Vidare kan svårigheter ligga i att finna en enhetlig tolkning av DCFR:s bestämmelser bl.a. beroende på utformningen med vaga normer. Detta trångmål måste dock accepteras, menar delar av doktrinen, om europeiseringen av privaträtten ska kunna realiseras. Olikheterna bottnar bl.a. i EU-medborgarnas avvikande intressen, preferenser och åsikter relaterat till de ämnen som DCFR behandlar, språkförbistring samt inställningen till social rättvisa. En annan aspekt är att marknadsaktörerna kan komma att avtala bort DCFR vid upprättandet av B2B-kontrakt om produkten utformas som ett fakultativt instrument, varvid ett tvingande verktyg förordas av vissa av författarna i doktrinen, för att uppnå en koherent rättstillämpning.

Det kan vara svårt att förutse hur starkt socialt rättviseskydd som DCFR kommer att kunna skapa eller var gränsen mellan liberala och sociala komponenter ska dras inom avtalsrätten. Den potentiella konflikten är kontroversiell med stark politisk karaktär. Kritiker menar att fullkomlig prioritering av de sociala aspekterna i själva verket kan leda till en försämring, då icke-diskrimineringsbestämmelserna de facto kan ge upphov till mer diskriminering, i vart fall undanskymd sådan. Medborgarna skulle därmed invaggas in en falsk trygghet att likabehandling tillförsäkras dem. Vidare kan en alltför strikt reglerad diskrimineringslagstiftning leda till stagnation eller verka hämmande på marknaden. Företag kan, för att exempelvis undgå kontroll av sin rekryteringsprocess, välja att i högre utsträckning anställa internt. Följden blir minskad transparens, uteblivna offentliga avtal och istället risk för ökad diskriminering. Avtalsfriheten respektive icke-diskrimineringsprincipen riskerar således att underminera varandras syfte. Det finns emellertid mycket som talar för att detta scenario kan komma att undvikas när den sociala skyddslagstiftningen integreras i den europeiska avtalsrätten. Förespråkare hävdar att marknadsekonomiska samhällen som inkorporerar lojalitet, solidaritet och rättvisa är mer välfungerande än gemenskaper i vilka dessa sociala beståndsdelar uteslutits. Jag anser att DCFR tydliggör att prioritet ska läggas på att lyfta fram solidaritet, jämlikhet och icke-diskriminering på ett sätt som tidigare inte gjorts inom privaträtten. Tillkomsten av DCFR skulle därmed fylla ett tomrum och bringa dessa annars relativt tydligt separerade ämnesområden betydligt närmare varandra samt tillföra en individnivå. Införlivandet av icke-diskrimineringsbestämmelserna i privaträttens sfär kan således förhoppningsvis bidra till en mer emanciperad och integrerad europeisk union och en avtalsrätt med social prägel. För att få tillstånd denna förändring, krävs emellertid en aktion från såväl unionens samtliga rättsinstanser som marknadsaktörer och inte minst den enskilde EU- medborgaren. (Less)
Abstract
For several years, there has been an ongoing debate regarding the establishment of a uniform European contract law. The subsequent harmonization process has been driven both on an academic level as well as by the legislative authority of the European Union. Recently established, the Draft Common Frame of Reference, DCFR, is an initial step towards unification of laws. This frame of reference is hitherto soft law but may, in whole or in part, form the basis of a more binding framework, CFR. DCFR adds yet another aspect, namely the individual dimension, by integrating formerly separated disciplines under the domain of private law. This thesis intends to deal with the non-discrimination principle in the light of the freedom of contract with... (More)
For several years, there has been an ongoing debate regarding the establishment of a uniform European contract law. The subsequent harmonization process has been driven both on an academic level as well as by the legislative authority of the European Union. Recently established, the Draft Common Frame of Reference, DCFR, is an initial step towards unification of laws. This frame of reference is hitherto soft law but may, in whole or in part, form the basis of a more binding framework, CFR. DCFR adds yet another aspect, namely the individual dimension, by integrating formerly separated disciplines under the domain of private law. This thesis intends to deal with the non-discrimination principle in the light of the freedom of contract with DCFR as its basis. Previously, protective regulations such as non-discrimination provisions mainly fell under the category of Human Rights. Consequently, primarily states could be put on trial for violations. In the so-called model rules, as the Study Group on a European Civil Code presents in the DCFR, the importance of protective regulations within both the civil and commercial domain is highlighted, especially related to contract law. DCFR proposes to integrate social protection into contract law. The internal market is often used as an argument to harmonize this field of law. The harmonization is then created in order to eliminate significant differences that cannot be resolved on the basis of party autonomy, and hence can give rise to distorted competition. Freedom of contract is a core principle in western societies and is a foundation for market economy and EU law. Nevertheless, questions could arise regarding these fundamental principles and whether to prioritize social aspects or the freedom of the internal market. Furthermore, the difficulties lie in finding a consistent interpretation of the DCFR's provisions, partly due to its foundation on vague norms. This distress must, however, be accepted, as argued by parts of the doctrine, if the Europeanization of private law should be realized. The differences stem from EU citizens' divergent interests, preferences and opinions related to the topics DCFR are dealing with, confusion of languages, and distinct attitudes towards social justice. Another aspect is that the participants in a market economy may omit DCFR when applying B2B contracts if DCFR would be established as an optional instrument, and therefore a binding tool is advocated by some authors in the doctrine in order to achieve a coherent application of law.

It can be difficult to predict how strongly socially equitable protection DCFR will be able to create or where the distinction between liberal and social components is to be made in contract law. This is a controversial issue that has strong political connotations. Critics argue that complete prioritization of the social aspects, in fact, can lead to deterioration, as non-discrimination provisions in fact can lead to more discrimination. Citizens would then be lured into a false sense of security that the principle of equal treatment was ensured. Furthermore, overly regulated non-discriminatory provisions might give rise to inhibitory effects on the market and may lead to agreement failure. One example would be when position announcements are not officially published, but instead advertised internally, supposedly giving rise to an even more discriminatory outcome than would be the case without such legislation in place. The result is reduced transparency, lack of public contracts and a possibility of increased discrimination. The principle of contractual freedom and the non-discrimination principle, respectively, thus threat to undermine each other's purpose. This thesis, however, argues that it is possible to avoid the mentioned outcome during the course of integration of social protection into the field of contract law. Societies built on a market economy incorporating loyalty, solidarity, and fairness cooperate better than communities in which these social elements are excluded. I believe that DCFR is clarifying that priority of endorsement should be given solidarity, equality and non-discrimination in a way which has not previously been done in private law. The establishment of the DCFR would thus fill a void and bring these otherwise relatively separated fields much closer together as well as adding an individual level. The incorporation of non-discrimination provisions into the civil sphere may hopefully contribute to a more emancipated and integrated European Union and a contract law with a more social character. In order to obtain this change, however, action is required from both the entirety of the legislative authorities of the European Union as well as the market participants, and not the least, the individual EU citizen. (Less)
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author
Liljequist Aspelund, Alida LU
supervisor
organization
alternative title
DCFR - a step towards a social contract law?
course
JURM01 20102
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
Avtalsrätt, EU-rätt, EU law, DCFR, civilrätt, socialrätt, social and welfare law, rättssociologi, Draft Common Frame of Reference
language
Swedish
id
3363028
date added to LUP
2013-01-14 11:11:28
date last changed
2013-01-14 11:11:28
@misc{3363028,
  abstract     = {For several years, there has been an ongoing debate regarding the establishment of a uniform European contract law. The subsequent harmonization process has been driven both on an academic level as well as by the legislative authority of the European Union. Recently established, the Draft Common Frame of Reference, DCFR, is an initial step towards unification of laws. This frame of reference is hitherto soft law but may, in whole or in part, form the basis of a more binding framework, CFR. DCFR adds yet another aspect, namely the individual dimension, by integrating formerly separated disciplines under the domain of private law. This thesis intends to deal with the non-discrimination principle in the light of the freedom of contract with DCFR as its basis. Previously, protective regulations such as non-discrimination provisions mainly fell under the category of Human Rights. Consequently, primarily states could be put on trial for violations. In the so-called model rules, as the Study Group on a European Civil Code presents in the DCFR, the importance of protective regulations within both the civil and commercial domain is highlighted, especially related to contract law. DCFR proposes to integrate social protection into contract law. The internal market is often used as an argument to harmonize this field of law. The harmonization is then created in order to eliminate significant differences that cannot be resolved on the basis of party autonomy, and hence can give rise to distorted competition. Freedom of contract is a core principle in western societies and is a foundation for market economy and EU law. Nevertheless, questions could arise regarding these fundamental principles and whether to prioritize social aspects or the freedom of the internal market. Furthermore, the difficulties lie in finding a consistent interpretation of the DCFR's provisions, partly due to its foundation on vague norms. This distress must, however, be accepted, as argued by parts of the doctrine, if the Europeanization of private law should be realized. The differences stem from EU citizens' divergent interests, preferences and opinions related to the topics DCFR are dealing with, confusion of languages, and distinct attitudes towards social justice. Another aspect is that the participants in a market economy may omit DCFR when applying B2B contracts if DCFR would be established as an optional instrument, and therefore a binding tool is advocated by some authors in the doctrine in order to achieve a coherent application of law.

It can be difficult to predict how strongly socially equitable protection DCFR will be able to create or where the distinction between liberal and social components is to be made in contract law. This is a controversial issue that has strong political connotations. Critics argue that complete prioritization of the social aspects, in fact, can lead to deterioration, as non-discrimination provisions in fact can lead to more discrimination. Citizens would then be lured into a false sense of security that the principle of equal treatment was ensured. Furthermore, overly regulated non-discriminatory provisions might give rise to inhibitory effects on the market and may lead to agreement failure. One example would be when position announcements are not officially published, but instead advertised internally, supposedly giving rise to an even more discriminatory outcome than would be the case without such legislation in place. The result is reduced transparency, lack of public contracts and a possibility of increased discrimination. The principle of contractual freedom and the non-discrimination principle, respectively, thus threat to undermine each other's purpose. This thesis, however, argues that it is possible to avoid the mentioned outcome during the course of integration of social protection into the field of contract law. Societies built on a market economy incorporating loyalty, solidarity, and fairness cooperate better than communities in which these social elements are excluded. I believe that DCFR is clarifying that priority of endorsement should be given solidarity, equality and non-discrimination in a way which has not previously been done in private law. The establishment of the DCFR would thus fill a void and bring these otherwise relatively separated fields much closer together as well as adding an individual level. The incorporation of non-discrimination provisions into the civil sphere may hopefully contribute to a more emancipated and integrated European Union and a contract law with a more social character. In order to obtain this change, however, action is required from both the entirety of the legislative authorities of the European Union as well as the market participants, and not the least, the individual EU citizen.},
  author       = {Liljequist Aspelund, Alida},
  keyword      = {Avtalsrätt,EU-rätt,EU law,DCFR,civilrätt,socialrätt,social and welfare law,rättssociologi,Draft Common Frame of Reference},
  language     = {swe},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {DCFR - ett steg mot en social avtalsrätt?},
  year         = {2012},
}