The European Court of Justice (ECJ) is to rule in a dispute between short-term rental platform Airbnb and the city of Paris on Thursday as the company faces pushback from some European capitals.
In 2018, Parisian city authorities took Airbnb to a regional court, alleging that they were failing to comply with local regulations on registering properties used for tourism.
The city argued at the time that no less than 20,000 residential properties had been lost to tourism and other purposes since 2013, something that increased pressure on the housing market for residents.
Airbnb argued that as an Ireland-based digital platform, its services connecting hosts with guests are covered by laws protecting the free movement of services in the EU.
The Parisian court turned to the EU top court for clarification of whether this was the case.
An advisor to the Luxembourg-based ECJ backed Airbnb in April, concluding that the platform “does not exercise control over the essential procedures of the provision” of the services offered by its users and therefore qualifies as an “information society service.”
The ECJ does not always follow the advice of its advocates-general, but often does so.
The case will then be returned to the Parisian court for a final ruling in light of the Luxembourg judges’ interpretation of EU law.