Reference documents - e-Business legal aspects
Substantial progress has taken place in the field of e-Business law at EC level since the entering into force of the e-Commerce directive (2000/31/EC). Through the implementation of the adopted EC legislation, Member States have developed and consolidated national practices.
Focus should subsequently be shifted onto the identification and analysis of the current e-business legal and administrative practices from an enterprise view. This subsequently led to the launching by the Commission of a consultation on the legal barriers in e-business, which was open from 15 September 2003 to 17 November 2003.
The results of this consultation have been further analysed in a Commission Staff Working Paper:
Legal Barriers in e-business: the results of an open consultation of enterprises [273 KB] (SEC(2004)498).
This document was used as the basis for the "European e-Business Legal Conference" (Dublin, Ireland, 27-28 April 2004).
Its final report [71 KB] summarised the discussions during the conference.
The Commission further examined and analysed the remaining legal barriers for SMEs in e-business vis-a-vis the national legal and administrative practices. This has been done by several meetings with stakeholders as well as through 3 major legal studies:
- Legal validity and mutual recognition of electronic documents :
- Country reports:
Legal Study on Legal and Administrative Practices Regarding the Validity and Mutual Recognition of Electronic Documents [3 MB]
- Draft Final Report [532 KB]
Benchmarking of the national administrative and legal practices
in the fields of e-signatures, e-invoicing as well as contract conclusion and implementation:
- Country reports (September 2006):
Austria [187 KB]
Belgium [183 KB]
Cyprus [130 KB]
Czech Republic [133 KB]
Denmark [169 KB]
Estonia [171 KB]
Finland [137 KB]
France [128 KB]
Germany [183 KB]
Greece [198 KB]
Hungary [205 KB]
Ireland [183 KB]
Italy [173 KB]
Latvia [163 KB]
Lithuania [182 KB]
Luxembourg [202 KB]
Malta [182 KB]
The Netherlands [129 KB]
Poland [193 KB]
Portugal [141 KB]
Slovakia [168 KB]
Slovenia [298 KB]
Spain [188 KB]
Sweden [155 KB]
United Kingdom [217 KB]
- Draft Final Report:
Benchmarking of existing national legal e-business practices, from the point of view of enterprises (e-signature, e-invoicing and e-contracts) [2 MB] (November 2006)
Legal Study on unfair commercial practices within B2B electronic markets:
- Final report: Legal Study on unfair commercial practices in B2B e-markets (May 2006)
The conclusions reached and the recommendations made in these studies were discussed at the Brussels 2006 conference "The EU's legal framework for e-business and innovation".
eBusiness without Frontiers: The Legal Challenges ahead [71 KB]
The European e-Business Legal Conference, summary report, 16 pp (Dublin, Ireland, 27-28 April 2004).
Legal barriers in e-business: The results of an open consultation of enterprises [273 KB]
Commission Staff Working Paper, SEC(2004) 498, 29 pp (Brussels, 26.4.2004).
- Open consultation on legal barriers in e-business - the questionnaire [34 KB] (September 2003).
Open consultation on legal barriers in e-business - the results [66 KB]
Statistical summary (November 2003).