UCL FACULTY OF LAWS

LLM Programme

The taught modules offered on the LLM programme vary from year to year. Please check the full list of taught modules list for details of modules running in specific academic years. We make every effort to ensure that every module will be offered, but modules are subject to change and cancellation. You are therefore advised to check this site regularly for further updates throughout the year preceding entry to the LLM programme.


COMPETITION LAW ENFORCEMENT IN EUROPE (LAWSG045)
Credit value: 15 credits (6 ECTS)
Module Convenor:
Dr Florian Wagner-von Papp
Other Teachers:
Dr Ioannis Lianos
Assimakis Komninos
Content

Summary:

This module will deal with the practical side of enforcement of European Competition Law.
The first set of questions concerns the investigation stage. What are your options when your client rings you early in the morning and tells you that the competition authority wants to search the company (or private) premises? Does your client have to answer questions in a request for information even if the answers would incriminate your client?

The second set of questions concerns the remedy stage. What level of fines will your client have to expect? Are there criminal sanctions for competition law infringements? Can your client avoid fines and/or criminal sanctions by applying for leniency or settling the case? Will your client be liable for damages? What does the new European Damages Directive mean for the future of private actions?

While the questions above have been framed from the perspective of infringers and their legal adviser, the issues dealt with are equally relevant for enforcers: What is the optimal mix of remedies? Should there be more private actions? Should there be more criminal enforcement? How should leniency programmes be designed?

All these questions will be analyzed not only with regard to the European legislation (in particular Regulation 1/2003), but also from a comparative perspective.
Please note that this module deals with the enforcement of competition law and does not (directly) deal with issues of substantive competition law. Basic knowledge of substantive competition law is strongly recommended – either acquired previous to the LLM or by taking one of the two substantive competition courses (EU Competition Law (LAWSG015) or US Antitrust and EU Competition Law – A Comparative Perspective (LAWSG098)).

Syllabus:

  1. Introduction to EU Public Enforcement: Regulation 1/2003 and the question of future procedural harmonisation
  2. Investigations and Procedural Rights
  3. Fines and Settlement Procedure
  4. Leniency programmes in the EU and Member States
  5. Private enforcement I: Right to damages, direct/indirect purchasers and pass on
  6. Private enforcement II: Quantification of Damages
  7. Competition Law Enforcement and Corporate Governance
  8. Remedies and due process in the enforcement of competition law
  9. Criminal enforcement
  10. Optimal Enforcement - What is the best mix of public and private enforcement?

Background Reading (optional):

For those who want to prepare the module in advance, go to the SSRN author page of the current Hearing Officer of the European Commission Wouter Wils (http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/cf_dev/AbsByAuth.cfm?per_id=456087) and start reading the articles you find interesting; all of them deal with issues highly pertinent to the course (and most of them will be required or highly recommended reading anyway). A good starting point would be:

  • Wils, Wouter P. J., Ten Years of Regulation 1/2003 - A Retrospective (June 4, 2013). Journal of European Competition Law and Practice (2013 Forthcoming); presentation at the conference '10 Years of Regulation 1/2003' (Mannheim Centre for Competition and Innovation, 7 June 2013). Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2274013
  • Wils, Wouter P. J., Powers of Investigation and Procedural Rights and Guarantees in EU Antitrust Enforcement: The Interplay between European and National Legislation and Case-Law (November 3, 2005). World Competition: Law and Economics Review, Vol. 29, No. 1, 2006. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1319243

For those who want to do some relatively light summer reading related to the module, there are two “true antitrust crime” novels/documentaries related to the module content:

  • Christopher Mason, The Art of the Steal - Inside the Sotheby’s-Christie’s Auction House Scandal - Penguin Group USA (2005) - Paperback - 416 pages - ISBN 0425202410 (please note: the film “The Art of the Steal” is unrelated to this book)
  • Kurt Eichenwald, The Informant - Broadway Books (2001) - Paperback - 656 pages - ISBN 0767903277

Both these books are well researched and easy reading. The second book has been adapted into a comedy film by Steven Sonderbergh (featuring Matt Damon). The focus of the film is not quite as much on the antitrust aspects that are relevant to the module, but is good entertainment and mildly informative as well.

Module reading lists and other module materials will be provided via online module pages, once students have made their module selections upon enrolment in September.

Delivery and enrolment
Lectures/Seminars: 10 x 2-hour seminars
Tutorials: None
Previous module enrolments: Small – less than 15 students
Who may enrol:
Prerequisities: None
Barred module combinations: None
Core Module for LLM specialism: Competition Law, Law and Economics, Comparative Law, European Union Law
Assessment
Final Assessment: 2-hour unseen written examination
Practice Assessment: Practice question (marked)
Other Information
Prizes: TBC

This page was last updated on 28 July, 2014

APPLICATION NOTICES

The application process for the 2014-15 academic session, for entry in September 2014, is now closed.

Information regarding applications for September 2015 will be updated on the website in September 2014.

IMPORTANT NOTICE : Updated 28 May 2014

The Home Office issued an update about the acceptance of ETS tests (including TOEFL). They have now confirmed that Higher Education students applying for a Tier 4 visa may use a TOEFL test taken after 17 April, if a Higher Education Institution is willing to use its academic discretion. For those students entering in September 2014, UCL will continue to accept the TOEFL even if it was taken after 17 April. However, if an applicant still needs to book a test then we recommend that they take an alternative test to TOEFL. Those who have already arranged to take a different test following the previous advice from the Home Office, we encourage you to go ahead with taking the alternative test.

The TOEFL test will continue to be accepted for 2014 entrants who have been asked to take an English language qualification as part of their offer condition, and do not need to apply for a visa to study in the UK.