Transposition (law)

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In European Union law, transposition is a process by which the European Union's member states give force to a directive by passing appropriate implementation measures.[1] Transposition is typically done by either primary legislation or secondary legislation.

The European Commission closely monitors that transposition is timely, correctly done and implemented, so as to attain the results intended.[2] Incorrect transposition may be the result of non acting (leaving aside certain provisions), diverging (other scope, definition or requirement), "gold-plating" (exceeding the requirements of the directive), "double-banking" (overlapping between existing national laws and the transposed directive), or "regulatory creep" (overzealous enforcement or a state of uncertainty in the status of the regulation).[3]

The European Commission may bring a case in the European Court of Justice against states which have not transposed directives adequately.[4] Additionally, any individual or business in a Member State may lodge a complaint with the Commission about the incorrect or delayed transposition of an EU directive or "for any measure (law, regulation or administrative action) or practice attributable to a Member State which they consider incompatible with a provision or a principle of EU law".[5]

The Commission publishes an annual report summarising how EU law has been transposed, with statistics on the numbers and types of infringements, per country and sector.[6]


  1. ^ "Better Regulation Glossary". European Commission. Retrieved 2008-09-04. [dead link]
  2. ^
  3. ^ Renda, Andrea (2009). Policy-Making in the EU: Achievements, Challenges and Proposals for Reform. CEPS. p. 76. ISBN 9290798858. 
  4. ^ "Infringements of EU law". European Commission. Retrieved 29 September 2013. 
  5. ^ "Exercise your rights". European Commission. Retrieved 29 September 2013. 
  6. ^ "Annual reports on national implementation of EU law". European Commission. Retrieved 27 September 2013.