How consumer law travels
Title: How consumer law travels
Author: SVETIEV, Yane
Citation: Journal of Consumer Policy, 2013, Vol. 36, No. 3, pp. 209-230
ISSN: 1573-0700; 0168-7034
This article synthesizes a number of the findings and themes emerging from the various case studies presented about the efficacy of the transplantation process of the EU consumer acquis in some of the EU accession and new Member States. Specifically, the article examines the process of incorporation through the lens of the domestication of the consumer rules either through the making of the local consumer laws or their subsequent enforcement in the case study jurisdictions. The overall conclusions from the case studies are that accession pressures are an important impetus for legal reform in consumer law, that there is limited tailoring of the rules in their transposition, and that there is slow take up by local actors in the resolution of consumer problems. The article suggests that getting it right in the law-making process in tailoring the rules to local needs or the extant local law may not be crucial for their subsequent efficacy, both because deliberations about the efficacy and fit of the rules may be irresolvable ex ante and because the relevant collocutors often do not exist at the time of original enactment of the consumer laws. Yet if the transplanted rules can be enlivened through local institutions as spaces for contestation of the rights and responsibilities that arise under consumer law, they can be domesticated or contextualized precisely through processes of ongoing contestation. From that perspective, it is institutional diversity in implementation in different jurisdictions, remedial hybridity and EU monitoring of the efficacy of local solutions that can help unblock suboptimal local outcomes.
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