Cuatrecasas represents Uber before the European Court of Justice

November 30, 2016

Cuatrecasas represents Uber before the European Court of Justice
Cuatrecasas represents Uber before the European Court of Justice

The firm defends the Silicon Valley company’s provision of digital services in Europe

Cuatrecasas advises Uber on the proceedings before the European Court of Justice. The court, in this case a panel of 15 judges in the Great Chamber, will have to consider whether Uber offers a transport service or a digital service accessible by a mobile app, for the information society.

The proceedings started in April 2015 when the Elite Taxi Professional Association (Asociación Profesional Élite Taxi) filed an unfair competition claim with a commercial court of Barcelona. Later, the matter went on to the European Court.

A joint team from Cuatrecasas and the French firm Gide, led by EU law partner Cani Fernández, contends that the nature of Uber’s activity is protected by the EU directive on information society services, so its activity is in line with EU law.

In this Tuesday’s hearing before the court’s Great Chamber, Cani Fernández argued that “Uber’s activities cannot be reduced to a mere transport service, and it is a clear example of the use of digital platforms to develop innovative services, such as collaborative economy, to connect users seeking a common interest.”

The advocate general appointed for this case will make his findings public next April, and the final ruling is expected three to six months later. The EU court’s decision will have a great impact as it will establish a legal precedent for all companies that foster the collaborative economy and development of the digital economy.

Based in San Francisco, Uber operates in over 72 countries and 450 cities throughout the world. In Spain, the service is available in Madrid.

2.Operation

The Court establishes its Rules of Procedure, which require the approval of the Council, acting by a qualified majority. The Court may sit as a full Court with 28 judges, in a Grand Chamber of 15 judges or in chambers of three or five judges.

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