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Restrained Integration of European Case Reports in Danish Legal Information Systems and Culture

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Court decisions not only serve to end legal disputes between the parties to the case, but also serve as precedents. In that sense court decisions are a source of law. This is common ground as to both national and European court decisions. Noting the existence of a context in which Danish legal information systems only publish case reports very selectively, we argue that although decisions of the European courts, notably European Court of Justice and European Court of Human Rights, are available from the homepages of these courts (CURIA and HUDOC), the fact that these decisions are not part of an integrated dissemination of case reports in Denmark may diminish the regard for these decisions and lead to a relative neglect of European law to the detriment of legal certainty. The article proposes that one explanatory factor in this regard is that the main legal information system in Denmark is influenced by a legal culture which is still predominantly national in orientation. In order to promote awareness of European case law and to improve the quality of legal thinking and practice, we propose that significant parts of this case law should be published in a more suitable way by incorporating it into a comprehensive information system that integrates the promulgation of Danish and European case law.

Affiliations: 1: Professors, Faculty of Law, University of Copenhagen, Denmark


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