About the Legal Service
Activities of the Legal Service
- The Commission’s legal adviser
- The Commission’s legal representative
- Helping to improve the quality of drafting of EU legislation
As the Legal Service is an internal service of the Commission, its documents are generally internal documents directly linked to its two main activities of providing legal advice and legal representation. Most therefore fall into one of the following categories:
- opinions of the Legal Service, drawn up to give legal advice to the Commission and its services;
- pleadings and other documents submitted in court cases.
The Legal Service also draws up certain other Commission documents, such as codification proposals or certain communications and guidelines.
Openness and access to documents
Like all Commission documents, the Legal Service’s documents are subject to the provisions of
Regulation (EC) No 1049/2001 of the European Parliament and of the Council regarding public access to
European Parliament, Council and Commission documents.
For more information on access to Commission documents see the web site Openness and access to documents.
However, it should be noted that Article 4(2) of this Regulation states by way of exception that "[t]he institutions shall refuse access to a document where disclosure would undermine the protection of: [...] court proceedings and legal advice [...] unless there is an overriding public interest in disclosure". In interpreting that exception the Commission is guided by the interpretations given by the Court in its case law on the subject.
proposals for codification of legislation
- Commission submissions to the Court
of Justice of the European Union, disclosed following an access to documents request
- Other documents
Last updated on 8.7.2015