Normative Guidance Inter-Court Trust in the European Union Judicial System

This paper discusses institutional and substantive dimensions of inter-court trust in the European Union (EU) judicial system. It employs the notion of normative guidance to scrutinize the degree of trust between the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) and the national courts. It will first introduce the role of normative guidance and how it applies to the obligations of national courts within the scope of EU law. I will then discuss how normative guidance affects division of competences and inter-court trust in the interaction between national and supranational courts in the EU legal order. To this end, I will draw on the case law relating to the manner in which the CJEU and the national courts contribute each in distinct ways to the meaning and development of EU law. Finally, I will discuss how a different conception of normative guidance may contribute to a higher degree of inter-court trust and a pluralistic rather than hierarchical architecture of the EU judicial system.