The Umbrella Principle


Counsel Opinion is that fees imposed pursuant to the Minimum Fees Regulations cannot be enforced since they are null and void under Article 101(2) TFEU

The CBA and/or any of its members could face civil actions in the Cypriot courts or the courts of other Member States for damage caused by the violation of Article 101 TFEU

Further to the above Counsel opinion is that even clients who were not subject to the system of minimum fees – because they concluded agreements to the contrary – may be able to claim damages for a violation of Article 101 TFEU, on the basis that the system of minimum fees had an “umbrella” effect of inflating the fees also charged outside the system of minimum fees.  The EU Court of Justice has held that this is a valid claim under Article 101 TFEU and that any rules of national law preventing such a claim would themselves be contrary to Article 101 TFEU