Language of document : ECLI:EU:F:2012:181


(First Chamber)

11 December 2012

Case F‑97/11

Philippe Vienne


European Parliament

(Civil service — Emoluments — Family allowances — Household allowance — Cessation of entitlement to the household allowance — Dissolution of the marriage)

Application: Action brought under Article 270 TFEU, applicable to the EAEC Treaty pursuant to Article 106a thereof, whereby Mr Vienne requests the Tribunal to annul the decision whereby the European Parliament fixed at 1 March 2011 the date on which payment of the household allowance paid to the applicant ended.

Held: The action is dismissed. The applicant is to bear his own costs and is ordered to pay the costs incurred by the Parliament.


Officials — Remuneration — Family allowances — Household allowance — Date of the cessation of entitlement to the household allowance — Appraisal in the light of national law — Date of dissolution of the marriage

(Staff Regulations, Annex VII, Art. 16(3))

The need for uniform application of EU law and the principle of equality require that where a provision of EU law contains no express reference to the laws of the Member States for the purpose of determining its meaning and scope, it must normally be given an autonomous and uniform interpretation throughout the European Union, which must be sought in the light of the context of the provision and the objective pursued by the rules in question. However, it is also accepted that, even in the absence of such and express reference, the application of EU law may, where appropriate, involve making a reference to the laws of the Member States, in particular where the Courts of the European Union cannot identify in EU law or in the general principles of EU law the elements which would allow them to define the content and scope of EU law by an autonomous interpretation.

According to the law of the Member States of the European Union, entry into marriage gives rise, as between the spouses, to a number of reciprocal obligations, in particular of a financial nature, such as the obligation to provide succour, and the dissolution of the marriage brings those obligations to an end. In so far as the household allowance is intended to compensate for the additional burdens entailed by marriage, the dissolution of the marriage entails the cessation of the right of a married official to receive the household allowance which he received on account of his marriage.

Consequently, Article 16(3) of Annex VII to the Staff Regulations must be interpreted as meaning that, where an official receives the household allowance on account of his marriage, the date on which the right to receive that allowance ceases corresponds to the date on which the marriage is dissolved.

(see paras 29-31)


18 January 1984, 327/82 Ekro, para. 11

18 December 1992, T‑43/90 Díaz García v Parliament, para. 36; 11 June 1996, T‑147/95 Pavan v Parliament, para. 42; 22 February 2006, T‑342/04 Adam v Commission, para. 32

1 July 2010, F‑45/07 Mandt v Parliament, para. 62