17 February 2023CopyrightStaff Writer

EU refers countries to CJEU over copyright failures

The move concerns the adoption of the Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market | Commission can call on the EU’s top court to impose financial sanctions on the states.

The European Commission has referred six member states to the highest EU court over their failure to transport copyright rules.

In an announcement shared on February 15, the European Commission said that it had decided to refer Bulgaria, Denmark, Finland, Latvia, Poland and Portugal to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) following their failure to notify complete transposition measures for the Digital Single Market (Directive (EU) 2019/790).

The Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market was passed in 2019, giving publishers the right to authorise or prohibit third-party online platforms from reproducing their content on a voluntary basis. Countries such as France, Germany and Spain have already adopted the directive, which was meant to be implemented into national law across the union by June 2021, but 23 of the 27 member states failed to do so.

Additionally, the European Commission has referred Bulgaria, Finland, Latvia, Poland and Portugal for failing to notify it of the complete transposition of the EU Directive on copyright and related rights applicable to certain online transmissions (EU Directive 2019/789).

“These two directives aim to modernise copyright rules for consumers and creators to make the most of the digital world,” said the announcement.

It added: “They protect right holders from different sectors, stimulating the creation and circulation of more high-value content. They bring greater choice of content for users by lowering transaction costs and facilitating the distribution of radio and television programmes across the EU.”

After the transposition deadline expired in June 2021, the European Commission opened an infringement procedure by sending letters of formal notice to the member states that hadn’t communicated complete transposition of the two directives.

In addition to bringing the matter before the CJEU, the European commission can call on the court to impose financial sanctions on the member states that failed to fulfil their obligation to notify measures transposing a legislative directive.

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