CHAPTER 7 : REFERRALS TO THE COURT OF JUSTICE OF THE EUROPEAN UNION
: Proceedings before the Court of Justice of the European Union
Parliament shall, within the time limits specified by the Treaties and the Statute of the Court of Justice of the European Union for action by the institutions of the Union and by natural or legal persons, examine Union legislation and its implementing measures in order to ensure that the Treaties have been fully complied with, in particular where Parliament's rights are concerned.
The committee responsible shall report to Parliament, orally if necessary, if it suspects a breach of Union law.
The President shall bring an action on behalf of Parliament in accordance with the recommendation of the committee responsible.
At the start of the following part-session, the President may ask the plenary to decide whether the action should be maintained. Should plenary rule against the action by a majority of the votes cast, he shall withdraw it.
Should the President bring an action contrary to the recommendation of the committee responsible, he shall, at the start of the following part-session, ask the plenary to decide whether the action should be maintained.
The President shall submit observations or intervene in court proceedings on behalf of Parliament after consulting the committee responsible.
If the President intends to depart from the recommendation of the committee responsible, he shall inform the committee accordingly and shall refer the matter to the Conference of Presidents, stating his reasons.
If the Conference of Presidents takes the view that Parliament should, exceptionally, not submit observations or intervene before the Court of Justice of the European Union where the legal validity of an act of Parliament is being questioned, the matter shall be submitted to plenary without delay.
In urgent cases, the President may take precautionary action in order to comply with the time-limits prescribed by the court concerned. In such cases, the procedure provided for in this paragraph shall be implemented at the earliest opportunity.
Nothing in the Rules prevents the committee responsible from deciding on appropriate procedural arrangements for the timely transmission of its recommendation in urgent cases.
Rule 90(6) of the Rules of Procedure lays down a specific procedure by means of which Parliament can take a decision on whether to exercise its prerogative, pursuant to Article 218(11) TFEU, to seek an opinion from the Court of Justice on the compatibility of an international agreement with the Treaties; that provision constitutes a “lex specialis” which takes precedence over the general provision laid down in Rule 128 of the Rules of Procedure.
When a decision must be taken as to whether Parliament should exercise its rights visà-vis the Court of Justice of the European Union, and the act in question is not covered by Rule 128 of the Rules of Procedure, the procedure provided for in this rule should apply, mutatis mutandis.