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General Presumptions of Non-disclosure of Leniency Documents: A New Approach to the Interaction between Public and Private Enforcement of Antitrust Law?

Journal article
Authors Clelia Lacchi
Allison Östlund
Published in European Law Reporter
Volume 2
Pages 53-61
Publication year 2014
Published at
Pages 53-61
Language en
Subject categories European law


The article analyzes European guidelines for national courts’ and authorities' practices of non-disclosure of the European Commission’s cartel investigations. National rules of non-disclosure restrict victims’ possibilities to bring damages for losses due to anti-competitive practices – whereas such presumptions may be justified by the efficiency and integrity of the leniency program. The article explores the costs of judicial secrecy in terms of legal certainty and equality of arms between litigants, identifying access to file as a precondition for the exercise of other autonomous rights under EU law. The main finding of the article is a dual standard of judicial transparency – contrasting the strict scrutiny applied by the Court of Justice when examining national courts’ practices of non-disclosure, against the presumption of non-disclosure applicable to EU level investigations.

Page Manager: Webmaster|Last update: 9/11/2012

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