Brussels II

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European Union European Union regulation:
Regulation (EC) No 2201/2003
Council Regulation concerning jurisdiction and the recognition and enforcement of judgments in matrimonial matters and the matters of parental responsibility, repealing Regulation (EC) No 1347/2000
Applicability all EU Member States, except Denmark
Made by Council
Made under Article 61(c) and Article 67(1) TEC
Journal reference L 338 , 23 December 2003 pp1-29
Made 27 November 2003
Came into force 1 August 2004
Implementation date 1 March 2005
Preparative texts
Other legislation
Replaces 1347/2000
Status: Current legislation

Brussels II Regulation (EC) No 2201/2003,[1] also called Brussels IIA or II bis is a European Union Regulation on conflict of law issues in family law between member states; in particular those related to divorce, child custody and international child abduction. It replaces Convention Council Regulation (EC) No 1347/2000 of 29 May 2000 on the jurisdiction, recognition and enforcement of judgments in matrimonial matters and in matters of parental responsibility for joint children. The regulation does not apply to Denmark.


The original Brussels II regulation was Regulation (EC) No 1347/2000. It was replaced with Council Regulation (EC) No 2201/2003 concerning jurisdiction and the recognition and enforcement of judgments which came into force on 1 August 2004 and applies from 1 March 2005 in matrimonial matters and the matters of parental responsibility. The revised Brussels II legislation is variously referred to as Brussels II bis or B, or Brussels IIA, or the new Brussels II and repeals the older regulation.[2][3]

25 of the 27 member states of the European Union have also become party to the Convention on Jurisdiction, Applicable Law, Recognition, Enforcement and Co-operation in Respect of Parental Responsibility and Measures for the Protection of Children, which largely overlaps with this regulation. For cases within the European Union, the regulation takes precedence over the convention. The European Union authorized the signature and ratification of the convention with council decisions 2003/93 and 2008/431 respectively. The authorization was necessary as the European Union and the member states had a shared competence over all matters of the convention and as the convention did not provide for the signature of "Regional Economic Integration Organizations".[4] For more recent conventions (starting with the 2005 Choice of Court Convention), the EU may sign if it has competence over matters of a Hague Convention.


The regulation concerns the jurisdiction responsible for parental responsibility, including the access to the child of the other parent. Jurisdiction is generally conferred to the courts connected to the childs habitual residence. The regulation also specifies procedures regarding International child abduction, but does not take precedence over the Hague Child Abduction convention (to which all EU member states are parties). The jurisdiction and enforcement of maintenance obligations(alimony, child maintenance etc.) fall outside the scope and is governed by the Maintenance directive.

Between 15 April and 18 July 2014 the EU commission had a "Consultation on the functioning of the Brussels IIa Regulation (EC 2201/2003)". The results, where all people who gave their address, were able to join should be published in a few months.

On 26th of February 2015 there is a workshop of the CIVIL LAW AND JUSTICE FORUM at the European Parliament in Brussels. "The focus for this edition will be on private international law: 'Cross-border activities in the EU - Making life easier for citizens'." Workshop Programm. There is also a webstreaming (live and afterwards).

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