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When the charter is used

The terms of the charter are addressed to

  • the institutions and bodies of the EU 

  • national authorities only when they are implementing EU law

For example, the charter applies when EU countries adopt or apply a national law implementing an EU directive or when their authorities apply an EU regulation directly.

In cases where the charter does not apply, the protection of fundamental rights is guaranteed under the constitutions or constitutional traditions of EU countries and international conventions they have ratified.

The charter does not extend the scope of the EU to matters not part of its normal remit.