Kobler v Republik Osterreich: ECJ 30 Sep 2003

The claimant’s claim had been presented to the Supreme Administrative Court in Austria, who had referred a question to the ECJ. Following the Schoning decision, the court withdrew the referral, and dismissed the claim. He now claimed damages from the state for the wrongful dismissal of his claim by the court.
Held: It was for member states not to infringe European law. The state, including the mechanisms for implementing the law is to be seen as one entity. Where the state could be liable for failing properly to implement European law, so too could the courts of that country. Three conditions for entitlement existed: a private right had to have been infringed, it had to be sufficiently serious, and there must be a direct causal link betrween the breach and the loss.
ECJ Reference for a preliminary ruling: Landesgericht fur Zivilrechtssachen Wien – Austria. Equal treatment – Remuneration of university professors – Indirect discrimination – Length-of-service increment – Liability of a Member State for damage caused to individuals by infringements of Community law for which it is responsible – Infringements attributable to a national court.

Times 03-Oct-2003, C-224/01, [2003] EUECJ C-224/01, [2004] QB 848, [2003] ECR I-10239, [2004] All ER (EC) 23, [2004] 2 WLR 976, [2003] 3 CMLR 28, ECLI:EU:C:2003:513
EC Treaty 48
CitedSchoning-Kougebetopoulou v Freie und Hansestadt Hamburg (Judgment) ECJ 15-Jan-1998
ECJ Freedom of movement for persons – Workers – Equal treatment – Promotion on grounds of seniority – Collective agreement applicable to public sector employees taking into account only periods of employment . .
CitedBrasserie du Pecheur v Bundesrepublik Deutschland; Regina v Secretary of State for Transport, ex parte Factortame and others (4) ECJ 5-Mar-1996
Member states may be liable to individuals for their failure to implement EU laws. The right of individuals to rely on directly applicable provisions of the EC Treaty before national courts is not sufficient in itself to ensure full and complete . .

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Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.


Leading Case

Updated: 02 November 2021; Ref: scu.186596