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Study JAI/A3/2002/02
on making more efficient the enforcement of judicial decisions within the European Union

    • Transparency of a Debtor’s Assets
    • Attachment of Bank Accounts
    • Provisional Enforcement and Protective Measures

The complete documentation of the study that was elaborated by Prof. Dr. Burkhard Hess for the European Commission is available on this website.

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English / German


Description of the Study

The general objective of the study is to provide a comparative analysis of the enforcement proceedings in civil matters in the Member States of the EU, preparing a Green Paper of the European Commission. To achieve this aim, four extensive questionnaires were compiled in three languages (English, French and German) on the subjects of transparency of debtors' assets, garnishment of bank accounts, provisional enforcement and protective measures. These questionnaires were answered by national reporters of the 15 member states (an additional report relates to Scotland). The study does not intend to harmonise the internal enforcement system of the Member States, but addresses the “interfaces” between the Regulation Brussels I and the national enforcement laws. The general objective is to improve the cross-border enforcement of pecuniary claims in the European Judicial Area.
On the basis of the national reports, the study analyses the different national enforcement systems by way of functional comparison. The main structures of the national legal systems are fixed in synopses. The general report describes the different legal orders and analyses their respective strengths and weaknesses. The insights thereby gathered allow for the making of policy recommendations regarding possible or necessary measures of harmonisation on a European level.
The results of the study were discussed with experts of the Member States in February, 2004. A consensus was ascertained that the project should be continued with the objective of setting up a Green Paper of the Commission in the next future.
In July 2003, the national reporters of the study JAI/A3/02/2002 set up a HEIDELBERG NETWORK ON EUROPEAN PROCEDURAL LAW which is organised as a discussion forum. The network shall support on-going legislative project of the European enforcement law. Additional legislative projects within the European Judicial Area shall equally be discussed.

The study is also available on the website of the European Commission:

The study is the exclusive property of the European Commission.

Updated on: 10/18/04