The European Union: Institutions, Legal System, and Community Law

The European Parliament

Spain holds 49 seats in the European Parliament. These Members of Parliament (MEPs) are grouped by political ideology rather than nationality, drawing a parallel with the Spanish Parliament but at the European level. The European Parliament possesses jurisdiction over regulatory functions, legislative power, control over the Commission, as well as budgetary and consultative powers.

Tribunal of Justice of the European Union

The Tribunal of Justice comprises judges and lawyers appointed by common accord of the governments of EU member states. These individuals are chosen from among jurists of prestige and popularity. Their role is to monitor infringements of Community law to ensure compliance according to EU standards. The Tribunal can also determine the liability of the EU itself and resolve disputes between member states.

European Council

The European Council convenes during international summits, bringing together the heads of member states, attended by the ministers for foreign affairs and a representative from the Commission. Its mission is to provide political direction and impetus to the European Union.

Court of Auditors

The Court of Auditors oversees all European funds, ensuring their proper management and allocation.

European Central Bank

The European Central Bank regulates all matters concerning the European Union’s economy, including monetary policy and financial stability.

Rules of Community Law

The EU has its own legal system, albeit an incomplete one that does not encompass areas like criminal or labor law. Community law holds supremacy over national law due to the principle of primacy. Under the principle of specialty, the EU regulates matters explicitly granted to it by treaty, or those poorly regulated at the national level that are better addressed at the EU level. The principle of subsidiarity dictates that the EU should only act when it can govern more effectively than individual member states.

Sources of Community Law

Original Sources

These are the founding treaties of the EU, such as the Treaty of Paris, Treaty of Rome, the Brussels Treaty, Single European Act, Maastricht Treaty, and the Lisbon Treaty, along with their annexed protocols. They outline the EU’s objectives and the measures to achieve them.

Derived Sources

These originate from the EU’s institutions and are established to implement the guidelines set by Community law. They primarily take the form of legal norms.

Diversity of Community Standards


Regulations are acts of the Parliament or Commission that are directly applicable in their entirety in all EU member states. They are published in all EU languages in the Official Journal of the EU.


Directives instruct member states to achieve specific results, leaving the methods for doing so up to each state. They aim to harmonize laws across the EU and are often published in the Official Journal. Member states are given a deadline to transpose directives into national law and may face penalties for non-compliance.


Decisions are binding in their entirety upon their recipients, which are typically specific entities rather than all member states. They may or may not be published.

Opinions and Recommendations

: an opinion is an opinion on a particular question. The recommendations suggest a path to follow. Not legally binding but moralmente.En the hierarchy of the sources of Community law is above everything except the first title of the Constitution. Spanish judges have to apply Community law and not a judge decrees gobierno.Si think a community standard is contrary to Community law itself must carry a reference to the Court of Justice UE.Los general principles of Community law are preferred and are of judicial creation. The Court of Justice of the EU if it is a source of law.

International treaty 5.Tratados Community:
International treaties are agreements between states soberanos.Están recognized in the constitution (art.94 / 96) In 94 tells us that the courts have to intervene in a previous or later, may be bilateral or multilateral.
Treaties must be approved by the courts in matters of art.94. All other matters should be communicated to the courts.
The treaty may not be published in the Official Gazette so do not force citizens. When publishing becomes a ordinaria.La Law enforcement is suspended until it is published, is provided dependencia.Los international treaties may be repealed by the rules set by the treaty to repeal it, if it is not satisfied and the parties not agree, you must go to private international law.
In order to establish a political union in the future there are communities Europeas.La 1 st is the European Coal. In 1957 Rome establishing the European Economic Community (EEC) which is integrated into Germany Italy France Netherlands Belgium and Luxembourg more later.