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The Legitimacy of Mutual Recognition as a Regulatory Strategy for the Policy Area of Civil Justice in the EU (RECLAiM)
Start date: Sep 1, 2014, End date: Aug 31, 2016 PROJECT  FINISHED 

The research will focus on the principle of mutual recognition and the therewith presumed mutual trust between courts in the policy area of EU civil justice. The principle of mutual recognition, held to be the cornerstone of civil justice, has been transposed from its traditional Internal Market context to this novel policy arena. This transposition raises the question of how the economic and other goals of free movement can be reconciled with due process and access to justice. The research will seek to explore this question in light of the growing body of enacted legislation and case law in the field of civil justice as well as other recent developments. The research will seek to assess whether the various underlying goals are compatible. The research will also seek to assess whether the various overarching measures, including networks and e-justice tools, sufficiently support mutual recognition or whether concerted action in the field of judicial training will come to be seen as necessary. Finally, the research will explore whether mutual recognition is sufficient or whether pressures for further harmonization of civil procedure are emerging. The ensuing responses will fundamentally impact on the perception of the legitimacy of civil justice. The research will be interdisciplinary. First, in exploring the challenges of mutual recognition relevant comparisons will be made to the traditional internal market context and theoretical framework but in particular to the developments in the EU criminal justice field. Secondly, the research will in the discussion on legitimacy seek a dialogue also with the political science debate on the legitimacy of European integration in the Area of Justice, Freedom and Security and on access to justice in an ever globalized world.

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