Wednesday, October 18, 2006

EU law and divorce

One of my lesser delights is sitting on subcommittee E of the European Union committee in the Lords - European law. The Commission is proposing to harmonise the law on divorce - at least in so far as choice of court and law is concerned - which could mean, for instance, that UK courts find themselves applying fault-based rules, or refusing a divorce under any circumstances, depending on the law they have to apply.

Civil servants gave evidence - very civil-servantish it was too. They agreed that the Commission had produced no evidence whatsoever that there was a wrong that needed righting. They agreed that the whole area was probably beyond EU competence. They agreed that there was no benefit to us. But they made the case for going along with the proposal on the grounds that (a) subsidiarity is meaningless, because the European Court only requires that the Commission take it into account and pay no attention to whether there is any substance to the case for subsidiarity, and (b) we must not upset others by standing out from the crowd.

Sometimes I feel as if I am watching a slow-growing cancer that no-one will treat, because we're still alive and the medicine might be nasty.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Perhaps you should consider supporting the cross-party Better Off Out of the EU campaign:

12:44 am  

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