Regulatory competition between company laws in the European Union: The Überseering case

Abstract

The strengthening of choice of law in the field of company law by the recent decision of the European Court of Justice in the Überseering case may lead in the near future to the mutual recognition of national business forms by the EU Member States. This will mean an increase in regulatory competition between company laws. But will this competition necessarily lead to an improvement in the quality of company laws, or could the opposite be the case? What would be the appropriate features of a regulatory framework that would guide a competitive race of company laws to the top and not to the bottom?

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

References

  1. 1

    For a review of the Centros-decision see: H. Halbhuber: National Doctrinal Structures and European Corporate Law, in: Common Market Law Review, Vol. 38, 2001, pp. 1385–1420; K. Heine, W. Kerber: European Corporate Laws, Regulatory Competition and Path Dependence, in: European Journal of Law and Economics, Vol. 13, 2002, pp. 47–71.

  2. 2

    See, for example: R. M. Buxbaum: “Back to the Future?” From “Centros” to the Überlagerungstheorie, in: P.B. Berger et al. (eds.): Festschrift für Otto Sandrock, Heidelberg 2000, pp. 149–163; W.F. Ebke: Centros — Some Realities and some Mysteries, in: American Journal of Comparative Law, Vol. 48, 2000, pp. 623–660; D. Zimmer: Mysterium “Centros”, in: Zeitschrift für das gesamte Handelsrecht und Wirtschaftsrecht, Vol. 164, 2000, pp. 23–42.

  3. 4

    R.K. Winter: State Law, Shareholder Protection, and the Theory of the Corporation, in: Journal of Legal Studies, Vol. 6, 1977, pp. 251–292; F.H. Easterbrook, D.R. Fischel: The Economic Structure of Corporate Law, Cambridge (Mass.) 1996.

  4. 5

    R. Romano: Law as a Product: Some Pieces of the Incorporation Puzzle, in: Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Vol. 1, 1985, pp. 225–283.; W.J. Carney: The Production of Corporate Law, in: Southern California Law Review, Vol. 71, 1998, pp. 715–780.

  5. 6

    W.L. Cary: Federalism and Corporate Law: Reflections upon Delaware, in: Yale Law Journal, Vol. 83, pp. 663–705; L.A. Bebchuk: The Debate on Contractual Freedom in Corporate Law, in: Columbia Law Review, Vol. 89, 1989, pp. 1395–1415.

  6. 7

    M.J. Roe: Chaos and Evolution in Law and Economics, in: Harvard Law Review, Vol. 109, pp. 641–668; M. Klausner: Corporations. Corporate Law, and Networks of Contracts, in: Virginia Law Review. Vol. 81, 1995, pp. 757–852.

  7. 8

    For more details see: K. Heine, W. Kerber: European Corporate Laws, Regulatory Competition and Path Dependence, in: European Journal of Law and Economics, Vol. 13, 2002, pp. 47–71.

  8. 9

    O.A. Hathaway: Path Dependence in the Law: The Course and Pattern of Legal Change in a Common Law System, in: Iowa Law Review, Vol. 86, 2001, pp. 601–665.

  9. 10

    E.G. Furubotn: Codetermination and the Efficient Partitioning of Ownership Rights in the Firm, in: Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics, Vol. 137, 1981, pp. 702–709.

  10. 12

    M. Kahan, E. Kamar: Price Discrimination in the Market for Corporate Law, in: Cornell Law Review, Vol. 86, 2001, pp. 1206–1256.

  11. 13

    For an overview see: R. Romano: The Genius of American Corporate Law, Washington 1993.

  12. 14

    For the need for “legal substitution” in general see: R. La Porta, F. Lopez-de-Silanes, A. Shleifer, R.W. Vishny: Law and Finance, in: Journal of Political Economy, Vol. 106, 1998, pp. 1113–1155.

  13. 15

    R. Romano: The Genius of American Corporate Law, Washington 1993.

  14. 16

    An illustrative example for the case of Delaware is given by W.T. Allen: The Pride and the Hope of Delaware Corporate Law, in: Delaware Journal of Corporate Law, Vol. 25, 2000, pp. 70–78.

  15. 17

    For an overview of the freedom of movement in the EU for workers and the urgent need to develop a regulatory framework (meta-order) to guarantee this freedom, see: J. Pelkmans: European Integration, second ed., Harlow 2001, pp. 165.

  16. 18

    C. Teichmann: Die Einführung der Europäischen Aktiengesellschaft, in: Zeitschrift für Unternehmens- und Gesellschaftsrecht, Vol. 31, 2002, pp. 383–464.

Download references

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Heine, K. Regulatory competition between company laws in the European Union: The Überseering case. Intereconomics 38, 102–108 (2003). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF03031777

Download citation

Keywords

  • Business Form
  • Regulatory Competition
  • Legal Capital
  • Incorporation Theory
  • Legal Product