Advanced

Utvecklingen av praxis avseende legal privilege vid konkurrensrättsliga inspektioner enligt EU-rätten vid misstänkta brott mot artikel 101 och 102 i FEUF

Thelin, Pernilla LU (2015) JUR091 20151
Department of Law
Abstract (Swedish)
Sammanfattning
En sedan länge efterfrågad genomgång av de EG-rättsliga konkurrensreglerna inleddes med Kommissionens vitbok den 28 april 1999. Denna så kallade Moderniseringsreform ledde bl.a. till Rådets förordning 1/2003 om tillämpning av konkurrensreglerna i artiklarna 81 och 82 i EG-fördraget. Denna trädde i kraft den 1 maj 2004 samtidigt som tio nya stater tillträdde EU. Den nya förordningen innebar nya och utökade befogenheter för Kommissionen vid sina undersökningar om misstänkta brott mot artikel 81 och 82 (Nuvarande artikel 101 och 102 i FEUF). I samband med Moderniseringsreformen aktualiserades åter igen frågan om skyddet för sekretess av rådgivning mellan en advokat och dennes klient, den så kallade principen om legal... (More)
Sammanfattning
En sedan länge efterfrågad genomgång av de EG-rättsliga konkurrensreglerna inleddes med Kommissionens vitbok den 28 april 1999. Denna så kallade Moderniseringsreform ledde bl.a. till Rådets förordning 1/2003 om tillämpning av konkurrensreglerna i artiklarna 81 och 82 i EG-fördraget. Denna trädde i kraft den 1 maj 2004 samtidigt som tio nya stater tillträdde EU. Den nya förordningen innebar nya och utökade befogenheter för Kommissionen vid sina undersökningar om misstänkta brott mot artikel 81 och 82 (Nuvarande artikel 101 och 102 i FEUF). I samband med Moderniseringsreformen aktualiserades åter igen frågan om skyddet för sekretess av rådgivning mellan en advokat och dennes klient, den så kallade principen om legal privilege.
Uppsatsens syfte är att belysa problematiken avseende legal privilege i sam-band med att ett företag blir föremål för en inspektion, s.k. gryningsräd, vid misstanke om överträdelse av artikel 101 eller 102 i FEUF. Frågeställningarna behandlar dels frågan om omfattningen av principen om legal privilege, dels frågan om vilka dokument som omfattas av denna princip. Den tredje och sista frågeställningen rör ett företags rätt till försvar och visar på de problem som kan uppstå när olika lagregler överlappar varandra, men inte överensstämmer och effekterna detta kan ha på sekretesskyddet. Det handlar här om medlemsstaternas nationella lagstiftning, EG-rätten samt EKMR och om medlemsstaternas kolliderande rättsliga åtaganden.
Omfattningen av legal privilege fastslogs av EG-domstolen i rättsfallet AM & S från 1982. Sedan dess har endast en ytterst liten utvidgning skett i rätts-fallet Hilti några år senare. Förhoppningarna om en utvidgning av legal pri-vilege var stora inför det omfattande rättsfallet Akzo som avgjordes 2007. Detta ledde inte till någon förändring utan Förstainstansrätten slog klart och tydligt fast att villkoren enligt AM & S står fast. Förstainstansrättens dom överklagades till EG-domstolen men ledde inte heller där till någon utvidgning av innebörden av principen. Trots detta har fallet inte gått obemärkt förbi då några medlemsstater har utökat befintlig praxis till att i vissa fall även om fatta korrespondens med bolagsjurister.
När det gäller vilka dokument som omfattas av legal privilege är AM & S alltjämt ledande. Förstainstansrätten utökade legal privilege, om än med en restriktiv tolkning, i målet Akzo till att även omfatta ett företags förberedande interna dokument som upprättats i syfte att söka juridisk rådgivning.
Genom förordning 1/2003 upprättades även ett tvingande samarbetsorgan, det Europeiska konkurrensnätverket ECN, mellan Kommissionen och medlemsstaternas konkurrensmyndigheter. Även inom detta nätverk ställs frå-gan om legal privilege på sin spets då nationell rätt möter EG-rätten i detta forum.
När det gäller EKMR är inte EU medlem, men däremot i stort sett samtliga medlemsstater. Detta skapar intressekonflikter och rättsosäkerhet när det gäller ett företags rätt till försvar och principen om legal privilege. Det här gäller särskilt vid konkurrensundersökningar, såsom inspektioner. (Less)
Abstract
Summary
A long-sought review of the EC competition law was initiated with the Commission's White Paper on 28 April 1999. This so-called modernizing reform resulted, inter alia, in Council Regulation 1/2003 on the implementa-tion of the rules on competition laid down in Articles 81 and 82 of the Treaty. The regulation came into force on the 1 May 2004 at the same time as ten new states joined the EU. The new regulation meant new and extended powers for the Commission in its investigations of suspected violations of Article 81 and 82 (The current Article 101 and 102 of the TFEU). In connection with the modernization reform, the question of protection of confidentiality of counseling between a lawyer and his client, the so-called principle... (More)
Summary
A long-sought review of the EC competition law was initiated with the Commission's White Paper on 28 April 1999. This so-called modernizing reform resulted, inter alia, in Council Regulation 1/2003 on the implementa-tion of the rules on competition laid down in Articles 81 and 82 of the Treaty. The regulation came into force on the 1 May 2004 at the same time as ten new states joined the EU. The new regulation meant new and extended powers for the Commission in its investigations of suspected violations of Article 81 and 82 (The current Article 101 and 102 of the TFEU). In connection with the modernization reform, the question of protection of confidentiality of counseling between a lawyer and his client, the so-called principle of legal privilege, was raised again.
This paper aims to highlight the problems regarding legal privilege in the context of a company being subject to an inspection, a so called dawn raid, on suspicion of infringement of Article 101 or 102 of the TFEU. The first questions address the scope of the principle of legal privilege and which documents are covered by this principle. The third and final question relates to a company's right to legal defense and shows the problems that can arise when different legal regulations overlap, but do not conform, and the effects this may have on confidentiality. This concerns national law, EC law and the ECHR as well as the member states’ conflicting legal obligations.
The scope of legal privilege was established by the ECJ in the AM & S case from 1982. Since then, the Hilti case marginally extended legal privilege a few years later. There were high hopes for an extension of legal privilege before the extensive Akzo case, decided in 2007. This did not lead to any changes since the Court of First Instance clearly confirmed that the conditions laid down in AM & S remained unchanged. The judgment was appealed to the ECJ, but nor were there any extension of the meaning of the principle. Despite this, the case has not gone unnoticed since some Member States have extended existing practice, in some cases, to include correspondence with legal in-house counsel.
Regarding the documents covered by legal privilege, AM & S is still the leading case. The Court of First Instance extended legal privilege, albeit with a narrow interpretation, in the Akzo case to include a company's internal documents drawn up in preparation to seek legal advice.
Regulation 1/2003 established a compulsory cooperative body, the European Competition Network ECN, between the Commission and the national competition authorities. Within this network, the question of legal privilege comes to a head as national law meets EC law in this forum.
As for the ECHR, the EU is not a member, but virtually all member states are. This creates conflicts of interest and legal uncertainty with regard to a company's right to legal defense and the principle of legal privilege. This is especially true in competitive examinations, such as inspections. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
Thelin, Pernilla LU
supervisor
organization
alternative title
The development of case law relating to legal privilege in competition law inspections under EC law for suspected breach of Article 101 and 102 of the TFEU
course
JUR091 20151
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
EU-rätt, konkurrensrätt, mänskliga rättigheter, legal privilege
language
Swedish
id
7439664
date added to LUP
2015-06-24 13:08:35
date last changed
2015-06-24 13:08:35
@misc{7439664,
  abstract     = {Summary
A long-sought review of the EC competition law was initiated with the Commission's White Paper on 28 April 1999. This so-called modernizing reform resulted, inter alia, in Council Regulation 1/2003 on the implementa-tion of the rules on competition laid down in Articles 81 and 82 of the Treaty. The regulation came into force on the 1 May 2004 at the same time as ten new states joined the EU. The new regulation meant new and extended powers for the Commission in its investigations of suspected violations of Article 81 and 82 (The current Article 101 and 102 of the TFEU). In connection with the modernization reform, the question of protection of confidentiality of counseling between a lawyer and his client, the so-called principle of legal privilege, was raised again.
This paper aims to highlight the problems regarding legal privilege in the context of a company being subject to an inspection, a so called dawn raid, on suspicion of infringement of Article 101 or 102 of the TFEU. The first questions address the scope of the principle of legal privilege and which documents are covered by this principle. The third and final question relates to a company's right to legal defense and shows the problems that can arise when different legal regulations overlap, but do not conform, and the effects this may have on confidentiality. This concerns national law, EC law and the ECHR as well as the member states’ conflicting legal obligations.
The scope of legal privilege was established by the ECJ in the AM & S case from 1982. Since then, the Hilti case marginally extended legal privilege a few years later. There were high hopes for an extension of legal privilege before the extensive Akzo case, decided in 2007. This did not lead to any changes since the Court of First Instance clearly confirmed that the conditions laid down in AM & S remained unchanged. The judgment was appealed to the ECJ, but nor were there any extension of the meaning of the principle. Despite this, the case has not gone unnoticed since some Member States have extended existing practice, in some cases, to include correspondence with legal in-house counsel.
Regarding the documents covered by legal privilege, AM & S is still the leading case. The Court of First Instance extended legal privilege, albeit with a narrow interpretation, in the Akzo case to include a company's internal documents drawn up in preparation to seek legal advice.
Regulation 1/2003 established a compulsory cooperative body, the European Competition Network ECN, between the Commission and the national competition authorities. Within this network, the question of legal privilege comes to a head as national law meets EC law in this forum.
As for the ECHR, the EU is not a member, but virtually all member states are. This creates conflicts of interest and legal uncertainty with regard to a company's right to legal defense and the principle of legal privilege. This is especially true in competitive examinations, such as inspections.},
  author       = {Thelin, Pernilla},
  keyword      = {EU-rätt,konkurrensrätt,mänskliga rättigheter,legal privilege},
  language     = {swe},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Utvecklingen av praxis avseende legal privilege vid konkurrensrättsliga inspektioner enligt EU-rätten vid misstänkta brott mot artikel 101 och 102 i FEUF},
  year         = {2015},
}