The basic tool for determining whether there is a grant of state aid is Art. 107 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union. One of the ways a member state may be found to violate state aid rules is through its tax laws.
Classification of an income tax exemption as state aid entails a number of consequences extending far beyond tax issues.
The Energy Law is to permit industrial users to obtain certificates of origin and present them for redemption for only a portion of the electricity they purchase. But the future of this support mechanism has been called into question.
In the SARC case, the Court of Justice of the European Union has held that an advantageous licence from a public university does not necessarily constitute impermissible state aid. The case also provides important guidelines on when an undertaking may seek to annul a decision by the European Commission finding that a competitor has not received impermissible state aid under TFEU Art. 263.
Failure to comply with the rules for award and use of state aid may result in the recipient being required to pay back the money. But the law provides beneficiaries of aid opportunities to defend their position on several fronts.
LOT Polish Airlines is not the only carrier seeking public aid. Airlines in other countries have also been forced to seek state support. Whether the effort succeeds depends primarily on how the aid is assessed by the European Commission.