Free Movement and Fundamental Rights

Acquired Rights The Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties safeguards acquired rights to a significant extent. It had been claimed in the run-up to the Brexit referendum that it would safeguard the EU rights of UK nationals in the EU (and vice versa). However, the rights apply as between states and not individuals or […]

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Qualifications Overview

Approach to Qualifications The EU has introduced sector-specific and general qualifications legislation in relation to recognising diplomas, qualifications, and equivalent awards. There are two different approaches to the harmonisation of diplomas and qualifications. The first approach involves specific rules for sectors.  There are specific directives which have been made law throughout the European Union covering […]

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Recognition of Qualifications

Overview A practical issue which arises in exercising the right to establish in another member state is the recognition of qualifications.  In 2005 the EU adopted a general Qualifications Directive on the mutual recognition of professional qualifications.  The Directive applies to regulated professional activities. The recognition of professional qualifications under EU law has been modernised […]

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Procedure for Recognition

Comparison The Qualifications Directive requires the EU Member States to establish a procedure to examine and recognise professional qualifications. The host state must compare the migrant’s qualifications and abilities with those required by the national system. It allows the application of compensatory measures by the host state if there are substantial differences between the training […]

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Enhancing Qualifications Recognition

Qualifications Card The 2013 amendment to the Qualifications Directive provided for a European Professional Card (EPC) in a view to facilitating temporary mobility of the provision of services in the EU. It is contemplated that card may be made available in respect of particular professions, under implementing acts adopted by the Commission according to needs […]

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EU Freedoms Overview

EU Treaty Rights Free movement of persons as provided in the Treaty of Rome 1957 has evolved into a wider range of related rights under the various amending treaties since that time.  There is a right of free movement for workers to come and work in a host EU state.  There is a right of […]

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EU (Schengen) Immigration System

EU Immigration and Asylum (UK & Ireland Opt Out) Until  the 1990s. asylum and immigration were outside the scope of European Union competence. The Maastricht Treaty in 1992 extended EU powers to include some aspects of asylum. The so-called third “pillar” the Justice and Home affairs Pillar established mechanisms and institutions for intergovernmental cooperation on […]

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EU Citizenship Directive

Citizenship Directive The 2004 EU Citizens Directive in 2004 consolidates and updates earlier legislation. It seeks to reduce formalities and minimise the bases for refusal of entry. It introduced the concept of permanent residence. The directive applies to an EU citizen and family members.  Family members cover spouse, direct descendants under 21 and the EU […]

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EU Citizenship

European Union citizenship and rights. The Maastricht Treaty introduced the concept of citizenship of the European Union.  The Treaty declares the rights of a citizen.  Citizens have the rights conferred by the Treaty and the duties imposed by it.  The duties imposed are limited. The European Union flag and anthem were formally adopted. EU citizenship […]

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Worker’s Treaty Rights

Free Movement of Workers The European Union Treaty guarantees the right of workers to move between member states of the European Union to seek employment.  They must not be subjected to any discrimination based on nationality as regards employment, remuneration or conditions of employment. There are limited grounds based on public policy, security and health […]

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Basic EU Trading Rights

European Union Rights European Union law gives Irish residents and Irish businesses very valuable rights in relation to trading with the United Kingdom and the other countries of the European Union (EU) and the European Economic Area (EEA) (which is the EU plus Iceland, Norway, Switzerland). The original European Union Treaties granted rights to trade […]

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Customs Union Basics

Customs Union The European Union Treaties created a customs union between the member states.  It applies to all trade in goods which have monetary value and are the subject of commercial transactions. Goods for the purpose of the customs union includes everything capable of having value and being exchanged. What goods are supplied ancillary to […]

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No Discriminatory Measures

Direct Discrimination EU states may not impose, directly or indirectly on the products of other states, any internal taxation of a kind in excess of that imposed directly or internally on similar domestic products.  They may not impose on products of other member states any internal taxation which affords indirect protection to other products. Taxation […]

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De Facto Barriers Prohibited

Barriers to Trade The European Union treaty prohibits quantitative restrictions and measures having equivalent effect between member states.  This applies both to imports and exports.  Certain limited exceptions, based on narrow public policy considerations, apply. The prohibition applies to measures taken by member states.  This includes not only laws and binding rules, but also administrative […]

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