Chapter 22: The prohibition of abuse of EU law: a special general principle
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A thin line exists between the legitimate use of EU law and the illegitimate abuse of EU law. The Court of Justice of the European Union has unambiguously established that the principle prohibiting abuse of EU law is a general principle, in that it displays the general, comprehensive character which is naturally inherent in general principles of EU law. Yet, it is different compared to most general principles of EU law, as its primary use has not been to protect individuals, but instead to restrict the rights of individuals, thus making it a 'special' general principle. When applying it, there are competing obligations placed upon national administrative and judicial bodies. Firstly, they have an obligation to ensure that genuine rights under EU law can be relied upon. Secondly, they have the right and a duty to ensure the general principle is applied to prevent abuse of EU law from occurring. This chapter will bring about a greater understanding of the general principle and how it is applied in practice.

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