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Private enforcement

Third parties can enforce the DMA at the Member State level in the form of private damages actions. In this context, national courts may interpret and apply the DMA rules to find that their violation has caused harm to the third party bringing the claim.

Types of claims


  • Third parties will be able to bring standalone claims (where the Commission has not held that the gatekeeper has infringed the relevant DMA rules).


  • Third parties will be able to bring follow-on claims (where third parties would rely on a Commission finding of an infringement under the DMA before the national court to establish the claim).

Relationship between private enforcement and public enforcement

Information sharing

  • To facilitate private enforcement, the DMA also contains a framework for cooperation between national courts and the Commission. National courts are entitled to request information in the Commission’s possession and the Commission’s opinion on the DMA. The Commission also has the right to submit written observations to the Court on its own initiative to preserve the coherency of the DMA’s application.

Duty to stay proceedings

  • To avoid practical conflict between the Commission’s public enforcement and any parallel private enforcement, the DMA also imposes a de facto duty on national courts to stay any parallel proceedings as national courts must avoid judgments that would conflict with a decision contemplated by the Commission.

Relationship between national courts and the EU Courts

Referral process

  • National courts have the right to refer questions concerning the interpretation of the DMA to the Court of Justice of the EU for a preliminary ruling. 

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Digital Markets Act Hub

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Scope: Designation of a gatekeeper

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Duties: Obligations under DMA

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Enforcement: The European Commission

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