Article 267 TFEU provides for a method of constitutional dialogue between Member States and the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU): the preliminary reference procedure. According to Bosch , further integration required a procedure in which difficult problems could be solved. Therefore, under Art 267 TFEU, Member States may ask the CJEU for help in clarifying and interpreting EU law in the interest of effective judicial protection. During a case in a court of a Member State, when faced with a difficult question concerning EU law, that court may make a preliminary reference to the CJEU, who will usually answer the court’s questions. Following the CJEU’s answer (judgment), the national court may then deliver its ruling.
Decision to refer
The CJEU is flexible as to responding to preliminary references. In Irish Creamery Association v Government of Ireland , the CJEU said that a national court may refer a question at any time as to prevent interference with national processes. However, there are a few restrictions. The CJEU may refuse to respond to questions if they are referred from bogus litigation, as occurred in Foglia v Novello I  or if the questions referred are not related to the law of the national dispute: in Bacardi-Martini v Newcastle United Football Club , the CJEU refused to give a ruling on the compatibility of French law with EU law in an English dispute...
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