Monitoring cease and desist orders

Monitoring cease and desist orders

Monitoring cease and desist orders (Art. 7(1) Reg .1/2003)

Most prohibition decisions include a so-called “cease and desist order”, i.e. an injunction to stop or not to repeat the same or a similar illegal conduct 1 . Unless specified otherwise, this injunction applies immediately. If, for objective reasons, it is not possible to end immediately the infringement, transitory deadlines may be granted to the companies.

More about Monitoring cease and desist orders

The monitoring of such cease and desist orders may be based on tools provided for in the decision itself, such as a reporting obligation. For example, a dominant company having abused its position through an illegal pricing policy may have to regularly report its prices to the Commission during a number of years.

More about the Subject

The violation of a cease and desist order may lead to the adoption of a periodic penalty payment decision (see Module on periodic penalty payment).

Other Considerations

The follow-up actions (such as a decision on periodic penalty payment) do not require the adoption of a decision to open proceedings neither do they require a decision to close proceedings once monitoring is no longer deemed necessary. The Commissioner for Competition can however issue a public statement to take note that the addressees of the prohibition decision have adjusted their behaviour to the cease and desist orders.


Instead of pursuing an undertaking for violation of a cease and desist order the Commission may equally decide to open a new investigation (with a decision to open proceedings) in the case of infringements that were continued or repeated despite a prohibition decision including a cease and desist order. The starting date of such a new infringement would be the date of the previous Commission decision or a subsequent date from which the recommencing of the infringement can be proven. In such a case the legal entities within the undertaking that continued or repeated the same infringement may also be liable for the aggravating circumstance of recidivism 2 .


See Also


  • Information about Monitoring cease and desist orders in the Antitrust Manual of Procedures for the application of Articles 101 and 102 TFEU (Internal DG Competition)


[Note 1]
It is generally worded as follows: “The undertaking(s) shall immediately bring to an end the infringement [described in Article 1 of the decision] insofar as it (they) have not already done so. It (they) shall refrain from any act or conduct described in Article 1 and from any act or conduct having the same or a similar object or effect.”
[Note 2]
See point 28 of the 2006 – Guidelines on the method of setting fines imposed pursuant to Article 23(2)(a) of Regulation No 1/2003. Official Journal C 210, 1.09.2006, p. 2-5.

Further Reading

  • Information about Monitoring cease and desist orders in “An Introduction to EU Competition Law”, Moritz Lorenz (Cambridge University Press)

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