United States Mission to the European Union
Foreign Agricultural Service
United States Department Of Agriculture
Last modified: December 7, 2014

Difference between a Regulation, Directive and Decision


Regulations have binding legal force throughout every Member State and enter into force on a set date in all the Member States.


Directives lay down certain results that must be achieved but each Member State is free to decide how to transpose directives into national laws.


Decisions are EU laws relating to specific cases and directed to individual or several Member States, companies or private individuals.  They are binding upon those to whom they are directed.