Fundamental Rights and Contract Law

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Originally, contract law was considered to be immune from the effect of fundamental rights, the function of which was limited to being individual defences against the vigilant eye of the state. This traditional view, however, has recently been put under pressure as a result of fundamental rights increasingly becoming relevant for (European) contract law. The relationships between private parties under contract law have started losing their immunity from the effect of fundamental rights. It is argued in this essay that the major question at present is no longer whether fundamental rights may have an impact on contract law, but to what extent this will occur, and that the answer to this question will determine the future of (European) contract law.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)489-505
JournalEuropean Review of Contract Law
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • fundamental rights, contract law, European contract law, constitutionalisation of contract law

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