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Luxembourg

Author: Laurens Victor Steinmetz

I. Factsheet

Scope

There is no specific horizontal class action mechanism.

Sectoral mechanisms are available in consumer and competition law.

Traditional devices for multi-party proceedings are available (joinder), as well as one specific type of representative action: duly qualified organisations can request the judicial review of an administrative decision issued by a public body.

Problems/Incompatibilities with Recommendation principles

Collective redress mechanisms are limited to consumer and competition law, and are solely injunctive. The right to compensation and the right to access to justice remain theoretical for Luxembourg consumers.

Standing (Para. 4-7)

An individual, professional group or accredited consumer association can bring the claim. The only entity authorised so faris the ULC ('Union Luxembourgeoise des Consommateurs').

Admissibility (Para. 8-9)

The Luxembourg group action follows a summary proceeding to obtain an injunction. It is a one stage process, and the cessation of the infringement may be ordered even in the absence of evidence of actual loss or damage, or negligence on the part of the defendant.

Information on Collective Redress (Para. 10-12, 35-37)

The Court may order a publication of the decision: to be displayed outside the business facilities of the defendant, in newspapers, or by any other means. Costs to be borne by the defendant.

Problems/Incompatibilities with Recommendation principles

No National Registry.

Funding (Para. 14-16)

Currently, the only entity which has been allowed to file a group action is the ULC, which is financially assisted by the State.

Problems/Incompatibilities with Recommendation principles

Third-party funding is unknown in Luxembourg. However no legal or regulatory provisions prohibits a third party from funding a claim.

Cross Border Cases (Para. 17-18)

There are no specific rules or limitations as to the participation of foreign claimants.

Expedient procedures for injunctive orders (Para. 19)

The Court can order any protective or interim measures to prevent a damage or put an end to a violation.

Efficient enforcement of injunctive orders (Para. 20)

Any failure to comply with the injunctions or prohibitions imposed by a final decision shall be punishable by a fine (from 251 to 120 000 euros).

Opt In/Opt Out (Para. 21-24)

The organisation brings the claim in the general interest of the consumers, and does not represent a class of identified members. There is no mechanism of opting-in or out.

Collective ADR and Settlements (Para. 25-28)

The court can encourage the parties to settle, and the parties can chose to do so at any time.

Problems/Incompatibilities with Recommendation principles

No specific collective ADR mechanisms.

Costs (Para. 13)

The losing party usually does not bear the legal costs: each party bears its own. However, the successful party may recover a procedural indemnity from the losing party, the amount being determined by the judge.

Lawyers' Fees (Para. 29-30)

Contingency fees are prohibited. However, a lawyer and his client may enter into an agreement providing for a supplementary fee based on the result obtained.

Prohibition of punitive damages (Para. 31)

Luxembourg law does not allow damages to be punitive or exemplary.

Collective Follow-on actions (Para 33-34)

An injunction/sanction from the Luxembourg Competition Authority constitutes an irrefutable evidence of fault for the purpose of an individual action for compensation.

Problems/Incompatibilities with Recommendation principles

The follow-on compensatory action can only be individual.

Interplay between injunctions and compensation across all sectors

Problems/Incompatibilities with Recommendation principles

Group actions in Luxembourg cannot give rise to any compensation.

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