The Relationship Between European Community Law and National Law: the Cases Andrew Oppenheimer

This book is a selection of 90 case reports on the relationship between European Union law and national law of the 12 member states on key issues such as the Maastricht Treaty, the supremacy and direct effect of EU law, the remedies available before the national courts, and the impact of EU law on sovereignty and constitutional rights. There is also a useful introduction for those who are unfamiliar with the key issues which form the basis of the reported cases.

A foreword by Sir Leon Brittan describes this as “a timely and important book”. Certainly timely, since there are currently no casebooks available on this subject. However, it is not sufficiently important to be on my list of essential winter reading. For somebody wanting information on such a specialist subject, this book would not be a logical starting point.

Apart from the brief introduction, there is no commentary to lead the reader from case to case or identify the merits of a particular decision or, more importantly, to highlight emerging trends at a EU and national level. Further, with the rapid developments in EU law, the book will soon become dated as cases are decided.

So, although Andrew Oppenheimer is to be congratulated for his effort in bringing together judgments from the various national courts and presenting it in English, I feel this book would serve the academic community rather better than the legal community.