Rule of Law Dashboard

The dashboard provides information about rule of law-related judgements and pending cases at the Court of Justice of the European Union and the European Court of Human Rights.

Currently, cases on Hungary, Malta, Poland, and Romania are included in the dashboard, given the pending Art. 7-procedures and the urgent problems of the rule of law in those States. The selection of  further Member States to be included will be based on the Annual Rule of Law Reports of the European Commission, reports by the Council of Europe and reports by NGOs such as Freedom House and Varieties of Democracy.

The selection of cases is based on the definition of the ‘rule of law’ in Art. 2 of Regulation 2020/2092. Cases that concern (one of the elements of) the definition as described in the foregoing provision, are selected from Curia (CJEU case law) and HUDOC (ECtHR case law). Press releases by the registrars of the two courts and secondary sources are used to identify relevant cases.

For the text of the judgments and more information click on the links under ‘Case number’ and ‘ECLI:EU:C:’ for CJEU decisions, and under ‘Case number’ and ‘Name’ for ECtHR decisions. Click on the underlined text in the outer right column to get a short summary of the case. When an ‘ECLI number’ but no ‘date of judgment’ is given, this is likely to indicate that an AG opinion has been rendered.

The dashboard is work in progress, so if you have any suggestions or additions, you are welcome to contact the Meijers Committee via j.vanberckelsmit@commissie-meijers.nl. The dashboard will be updated regularly.

[last updated in June 2024]

Dashboard Rule of Law Cases – Hungary – CJEU

Case NumberNameDate of JudgementECLI:EU:C:Summary
C‑286/12Commission v Hungary06/11/20122012:687
retirement age of judges

lowering the retirement age of judges creates difference in treatment on grounds of age which is not proportionate; Directive 2000/78/EC

C-556/17Torubarov29/07/20192019:626
asylum procedure, effective judicial remedy

guarantee of effective judicial remedy for applicant of international protection, national court/tribunal required to vary a decision of the first-instance determining body that does not comply with its previous judgment; Directive 2013/32/EU, Art. 47 CFR

C-718/17Commission v Hungary2019:917
relocation of applicants for international protection

Joined Cases C-715/17 (Poland), C-718/17 (Hungary), C-719/17 (Czech Republic); failure to assist Italy and Greece by relocating applicants for international protection to their respective territories

C-66/18Commission v Hungary06/10/20202020:792
academic freedom

violation of academic freedom concerning amendments in Hungary’s 2011 Higher Education Act that limit the operations of foreign academic institutions in Hungary; Art 14 CFR

C-78/18Commission v Hungary18/06/20202020:476
Hungarian NGO Transparancy Law

restrictions imposed by Hungary on the financing of foreign civil society organisations through excessive transparency requirements; Art. 63 TFEU

C-406/18PG v Bevándorlási és Menekültügyi Hivatal19/03/20202020:216
asylum procedure, effective judicial remedy

the right to an effective remedy in asylum procedures; Directive 2013/32/EU, Art. 47 CFR

C-564/18LH v Bevándorlási és Menekültügyi Hivatal19/03/20202020:218
asylum procedure, effective judicial remedy

grounds for issuing an inadmissibility decision of an application for international protection (IP) and the time-limit imposed to make such a decision; Art. 47 CFR, Art. 33 Directive 2013/32/EU

C-650/18Hungary v Parliament03/06/20212021:426
legality of the adoption of the Art. 7 TEU resolution

Hungary challenged the vote on Art. 7 procedure for determining the existence of a clear risk of a serious breach by Hungary of the EU’s fundamental values, Hungary argued that the vote result did not take into account the abstentions

C-808/18Commission v Hungary17/12/20202020:1029
international protection and return of unlawfully staying TCN’s

Hungary failed to fulfil its obligations under EU law in the area of procedures for granting international protection and returning illegally staying third-country nationals; Procedures Directive (Directive 2013/32), Reception Directive (Directive 2013/33) & Qualification Directive (Directive 2008/115)

C-40/19EYcase withdrawn due to decision in C-406/18
asylum procedure, effective judicial remedy

effective judicial protection even if courts cannot amend asylum procedure decisions but may only annul them and order a new procedure; Art. 47 CFR, Art. 31 of Directive 2013/32/EU

C-67/19KD v Bevándorlási és Menekültügyi Hivatalcase withdrawn due to decision in C-406/18
asylum procedure, effective judicial remedy

effective judicial protection even if courts cannot amend asylum procedure decisions but may only annul them and order a new procedure; Art. 47 CFR, Art. 31 of Directive 2013/32/EU

C-210/19TNcase withdrawn due to decision in C-406/18
asylum procedure, effective judicial remedy

effective judicial protection even if courts cannot amend asylum procedure decisions but may only annul them and order a new procedure; Art. 47 CFR, Art. 31 of Directive 2013/32/EU

C-564/19IS23/11/20212021:949
Limitations to refer preliminary questions

Under Hungarian law it was unlawful to refer irrelevant/unnecessary preliminary questions, and disciplinary measures could be taken if the national judge nonetheless decided to ask preliminary questions. This is in violation with EU law.

C-821/19Commission v Hungary16/11/20212021:930
inadmissibality for international protection applications

introduction of a ground of inadmissibility for applications for international protection in addition to those listed in the Procedures Directive 2013/32/EU and the Hungarian Criminal Code that criminalises any ‘organising activity’ enabling asylum proceedings to be brought by a person who is not entitled to international protection under national law

C‑924/19 PPU and C‑925/19 PPU FMS and Others14/05/20202020:367
international protection, effectiv judicial remedy

change of destination country in return decision by an administrative authority should be regarded as a new return decision requiring an effective remedy, transit zone as detention within meaning of Reception Conditions and Returns Directive; Art. 47 CFR

C-156/21Hungary v Parliament and Council16/02/20222022:97
Conditionality Regulation

Hungary challenges the legality of Regulation 2020/2092 on a general regime of conditionality for the protection of the Union budget as it lacks a valid legal basis

C-823/21

Commission v Hungary (Déclaration d’intention préalable à une demande d’asile) 22/06/23 2023:504
Failure to fulfil EU asylum obligations

By deciding in line with the Commission, the Court of Justice recognises that by making the possibility of making an application for international protection subject to the prior submission of a declaration of intent to an embassy located in a third country, Hungary has failed to fulfil its obligations under EU asylum law.

C-225/24 European Parliament v. European Commission
 
 Unfreezing EU Funds  


In this case, the EP brings an action for annulment against Implementing Decision C(2023)90141 of 13 December 2023. The three pleas by the EP: i. alleging infringement of Articles 9(1) and 15 and Annex III of the Common Provisions Regulation 2021/1060 and manifest errors of assessment; ii. alleging infringement of the duty to state reasons; iii. alleging misuse of powers.

 


Dashboard Rule Of Law Cases – Hungary – ECtHR

Case NumberNameDate of JudgementSummary
20261/12Baka v. Hungary23/06/2016
judicial independence

Art. 6 ECHR; judicial independence, several constitutional and legislative reforms led to the early termination of Mr. Baka’s mandate, expelling the critical judge from the highest office in the Hungarian judiciary, without providing any possibility for judicial review

45434/12, 45438/12 and 375/13J.B. and Others v. Hungary27/11/2018
retirement age of judges

Art. 6 and 8 ECHR; retirement age of judges, complaints of judges and prosecutors who faced early retirement as a result of Hungary’s recent judicial reforms, found inadmissible as they failed to establish the severity of the impact this legislative measure had on their private lives

45438/12 (decision in J.B. and others v. Hungary)
Belegi and others v. Hungary27/11/2018see J.B. and others v. Hungary
375/13 (decision in J.B. and others v. Hungary)
Horváth and Kulcsár v. Hungary27/11/2018see J.B. and others v. Hungary
57774/13Miracle Europe Kft v. Hungary12/04/2016
tribunal/court established by law

Article 6 ECHR; volation of the applicant company’s right to a fair trial on account of its case not being heard by a “tribunal established by law” due to the discretionary reassignment from the initially competent court to another court

22254/14Erményi v. Hungary22/02/2017
premature termination of judge’s mandate

premature termination of the applicant’s mandate as Vice-President of the Hungarian Supreme Court in parallel with the dismissal of the President of that court, examined in the Baka case, due to a change in the Hungarian legislation

201/17Magyar Kétfarkú Kutya Párt v. Hungary21/01/2020
Law penalizing political party for mobile app lacked sufficient precision

The Court found a violation of Art 10 (freedom of expression) in a case where a provision of Hungarian election law had penalised the applicant party for providing an app which allowed voters to photograph, anonymously upload and comment on invalid votes cast during a referendum on immigration in 2016 – which had been an exercise of its freedom of expression.

42461/13, 44357/13Karácsony and Others v. Hungary17/05/2016
MPs fined for their conduct in Parliament

The Court found a violation of Article 10 (freedom of expression) in a case concerning fines imposed on Hungarian MPs from two opposition parties who had disrupted parliamentary proceedings by protesting two bills being debated in Parliament.

63164/16Mándli and Others v. Hungary26/05/2020
Journalists refused access to Parliament building

The Court found a violation of Article 10 (freedom of expression) in a case concerning the suspension of the applicants’ Parliament accreditation as journalists, without a mechanism to appeal against the suspension of their accreditation.

26005/08, 26160/08Tatár and Fáber v. Hungary12/06/2012
Hanging dirty laundry around Parliament qualified as political expression

The Court found a violation of Article 10 (freedom of expression) in a case concerning a complaint by applicants, prosecuted and fined for illegal assembly for hanging dirty laundry on the fence around Parliament in Budapest, in protest at what they considered the country’s general political crisis.

15428/16Szurovecz v. Hungary8/10/2019
Refusal of journalist to access a reception centre for asylum-seekers

The Court found a violation of Article 10 (freedom of expression) in a case concerning the refused media access to reception facilities for asylum-seekers, thus preventing him from reporting on the living conditions there.

50012/17

Ikotity and Others v. Hungary

05/10/2023
Right to freedom of expression

Opposition members of parliament were sanctioned for using posters without permission during an interpellation speech by a colleague. The Court determined that the reasons behind the decisions were relevant to the legitimate aim pursued and were sufficient to demonstrate that the interference was deemed “necessary” in a democratic society. Therefore, the Court concluded that there was no violation of the right to freedom of expression (Art. 10 ECHR).

Dashboard Rule of Law Cases – Malta – CJEU

Case NumberNameDate of JudgementECLI:EU:C:Summary
C-896/19Repubblika v Il-Prim Ministru20/04/20212021:311
independence of judiciary

Art. 19 and TEU, Art. 47 CFR; complaint concerning the conformity with EU law of rules in the Maltese Constitution governing the procedure for the appointment of members of the judiciary due to political interference in the judiciary

Dashboard Rule Of Law Cases – Malta – ECtHR

Case NumberNameDate of JudgementSummary

12427/22

A.D. v. Malta

17/10/2023
Unlawful and arbitrary detention of migrants and lack of timely and effective legal remedies

The applicant, a vulnerable individual due to his alleged minority and health situation, was held in various detention centres for different purposes over several months. The Court found a portion of his detention period to be arbitrary and in violation of Art. 5(1) ECHR, basing its findings on the fact that the Maltese courts did not issue any judicial order allowing for the detention as they are empowered to do under the national law. Furthermore, a violation of Art. 13 ECHR was established, highlighting deficiencies in Malta’s asylum system to address the applicant’s grievances, and basing such claim on, inter alia, its previous caselaw against Malta.

Dashboard Rule of Law Cases – Poland – CJEU

Case NumberNameDate of JudgementECLI:EU:C:Summary
C-192/18Commission v Poland05/11/20192019:924
independence of ordinary courts

retirement age of judges & public prosecutors; Art. 157 TFEU, Art. 5(a) & 9(1)(f) of Directive 2006/54/EC, Art. 19 TEU, Art. 47 CFR

C-216/18 PPUMinister for Justice and Equality v LM (Celmer-ruling)25/07/20182018:586
execution of European Arrest Warrant

execution of European Arrest Warrant by Polish court in Ireland, the meaning of the independence of the judiciary to be assessed in judicial test (general and invdividual; reiterating the Aranyosi and Căldăraru test; Art. 47 CFR, Council Framework Decision 2002/584/JHA)

C-522/18DŚ v Zakład Ubezpieczeń Społecznych Oddział w Jaśle29/01/20202020:42
retroactive lowering of Supreme Court retirement age

Art. 2, 4(3) and 19 TEU, Art. 47 CFR

C-537/18YV v Krajowa Rada Sądownictwa03/02/20202020:136
retirement age of judges, Disciplinary Chamber

lack of independence of Supreme Court’s Disciplinary Chamber, case closed on 3/2/2020 due to ruling in C-585/18; Art. 47 CFR, Art 9(1) Directive 2000/78/EC

C-563/18 & C-558/18Miasto Łowicz and Prokurator Generalny26/03/20202020:234
disciplinary regime for judges

preliminary reference questioning the new Polish legislation relating to the disciplinary regime for judges, request for a preliminary reference inadmissible but inadmissible requests cannot lead to disciplinary sanctions for judges; Art. 19 TEU

C-585/18, C-624/18 & C-625/18A. K. and Others v Sąd Najwyższy19/11/20192019:982
independence of Disciplinary Chamber

appointment procedure of judges of the Supreme Court involving the NCJ, referring court must assess whether the new Disciplinary Chamber is independent; Art. 47 CFR, Art. 9(1) Directive 2000/78

C-619/18Commission v Poland24/06/20192019:531
legislation concerning retirement age of Supreme Court judges

legislation concerning the lowering of retirement age of Supreme Court judges is incompatible with principles of irremovability of judges and judicial independence; Art. 19 TEU, Art. 47 CFR

C-619/18 RCommission v Poland17/12/20182019:575
lowering of retirement age of Supreme Court judges

Poland ordered to suspend the application of national legislation concerning the lowering of the retirement age for Supreme Court judges

C-623/18Prokuratura Rejonowa w Słubicach v BQ06/10/20202020:800
new disciplinary regime for judges

new disciplinary regime for judges; Art. 19 TEU, Art. 47 CFR

C-668/18BP v UNIPARTS sàrl03/12/20192019:1093
retroactive lowering of Supreme Court retirement age

same key issue as in C-522/18, reference withdrawn by Polish Supreme Court on 23/10/2019

C-824/18A.B. and Others02/03/20212021:153
National Council of the Judiciary (KRS)

reference for preliminary ruling by the Polish Supreme Administrative Court in the context of legal proceedings against the appointment procedure of the National Council of the Judiciary (KRS), effective remedy aginst KRS decisions; Art. 15 and 20 TFEU, Art. 47 CFR

C-487/19W.Ż.06/10/20212021:798
status of Supreme Court chambers

composition of the “Chamber of Extraordinary Control and Public Affairs” which includes individuals appointed on basis of prima facie unlawful procedure; Art. 2, 6 and 19 TEU, Art. 47 CFR

C-508/19Prokurator Generalny22/03/20222022:201
judicial independence of Supreme Court

Request for preliminary ruling inadmissible. Lack of jurisdiction of the referring court to review the validity of the appointment of a Supreme Court judge and inadmissibility of such an action under national law.

C-748/19 to C-754/19Prokuratura Rejonowa w Mińsku Mazowieckim and Others16/11/20212021:931
composition and appointment process of criminal court

composition of criminal court and appointment process (involvement of the Polish Council for the Judiciary in the appointment of judges to the Polish Supreme Court); Art. 19 TEU, Art. 47 CFR

C-763/19 to C-765/19D.S. and Others07/05/20202020:414
composition and appointment process of court

composition of court and appointment process, withdrawn on 20/2/2020; Art. 19 TEU, Art. 47 CFR

C-791/19Commission v Poland15/07/20212021:596
impartiality and independence of Disciplinary Chamber

lack of independence and impartiality of the Disciplinary Chamber of the Supreme Court; Art. 19 TEU

C-791/19 RCommission v Poland08/04/20202020:277
order to suspend the activities of the Disciplinary Chamber

CJEU ordered the immediate suspension of the activities of the Disciplinary Chamber regarding disciplinary cases concerning judges, the Polish government disregarded the ruling and allowed the Disciplinary Chamber to make further decisions, such as lifting the immunity of judges with a view to prosecuting them if necessary

C-55/20Ministerstwo Sprawiedliwości13/01/20222022:6
Disciplinary Court of the Bar

understanding of the notion of a court under EU law regarding the Disciplinary Court of the Bar; Directive 2006/123; notion of court under Art. 267 TFEU

C-354/20 PPU & C-412/20 PPUL and P/Openbaar Ministerie17/12/20202020:1033
European Arrest Warrant and independence of Polish judiciary

surrender to Poland on the basis of a European arrest warrant (EAW) questioned in view of existing evidence of systemic or generalised deficiencies concerning the independence of the judiciary; Framework Decision 2002/584/JHA, Art. 47 CFR

Sąd Najwyższy and Others22/12/20222022:1046
 
 No need for interpretation EU law  


No need for interpretation of EU law to enable the referring court to give judgment, hence manifest inadmissibility.

 


C-819/21

Staatsanwaltschaft Aachen9/11/232023:841
Systemic or generalised rule of law deficiencies as an obstacle to mutual recognition

The CJEU addressed the concerns of a German Regional Court regarding the enforcement of a custodial sentence imposed by a Polish District Court, given that the Polish judicial system itself is no longer in conformity with the principle of the rule of law enshrined in Article 2 TEU. The Court ruled that a Member State may refuse to recognise and enforce a judgment imposing a criminal sentence delivered by a court of another Member State where it has evidence of systemic or generalised deficiencies in that Member State regarding the right to a fair trial, in particular so far as concerns the independence of the courts (in abstracto test), and where there are substantial grounds for believing that those deficiencies may have had a tangible influence on the criminal proceedings brought against the person concerned (in concreto test).

YP and Others13/07/20232023:562
Disciplinary Chamber

Interpretation of 2nd subparagraph of Art 19(1) TEU: Disciplinary Chamber of the Supreme Court of Poland lacks independence and impartiality. It could hence not lift a judge’s immunity from prosecution and his or her suspension from duties.

M.M.
Disciplinary Chamber

Disciplinary Chamber of the Supreme Court, can the President of a court change the composition of that court because the originally designated judge has been suspended by a body that does not satisfy the requirements of effective judicial protection; Art. 2 and 19(1) TEU. On 28 June 2022, a hearing took place before the Grand Chamber. The AG’s opinion will be delivered on 15 December 2022.

C-157/21Poland v Parliament and Council16/02/20222022:98
Conditionality Regulation

Poland challenged the legality of Regulation 2020/2092 on a general regime of conditionality for the protection of the Union budget as it lacks a valid legal basis

G.09/01/20242022:990
  Disciplinary Chamber  

The referring court’s questions pertain to the judicial panel tasked with handling the case, including a judge appointed in violation of procedures requiring judicial self-governing bodies’ involvement. They inquire if panels with such judges qualify as independent “judicial bodies” under Union law (Articles 2 and 19(1) TEU and Article 47 of the EU Charter). Moreover, the referring courts inquire whether, due to lack of Polish legal remedies against irregular judicial appointments, they should, to ensure effectiveness of Union law, apply national rules on automatic disqualification of judges appointed unlawfully from handling cases. The Court declared both requests inadmissible for being hypothetical (C-181/21) and irrelevant to the pending case (C-269/21).

Commission v Poland05/06/20232023:442 (judgment); 2021:878 (interim relief); 2022:991
Disciplinary Chamber

Commission’s action against Poland regarding the “Muzzle Law” and the (suspended) Disciplinary Chamber. On 28 June 2022, a hearing took place before the Grand Chamber. The AG’s opinion will be delivered on 15 December 2022. The Court ordered a periodic penalty payment as interim relief on 27 October 2021.

C‑562/21Openbaar Ministerie (Tribunal établi par la loi dans l’État membre d’émission)22/02/2022
European arrest warrant and independence of the judiciary

right to a fair trial before an independent and impartial tribunal previously established by law art 47 CFR

C-657/21Parliament v Commission
EP action against the EC for failure to apply the Conditionality Regulation

Infringement of the treaties by the Commission for failing to give full and immediate application to Regulation (EU, Euratom) 2020/2092

C-269/21BC. & DC.
Disciplinary Chamber

The referring court is concerned that the panel (of judges which is to hear the case on the merits) would include a person appointed to a judicial post in breach of the rules which require the participation of judicial self-government bodies in the appointment process. Central in this case is the concept of a tribunal established by law pursuant to Article 2, Article 19(1) and Article 6(1) to (3) TEU, read in conjunction with Article 47 of the CFREU. On 29 June 2022, a hearing took place before the Grand Chamber. The AG’s opinion will be delivered on 15 December 2022.

C‑132/20Getin Noble Bank29/03/20222022:235
  Appointment of judges and their independence  

Article 2 and 19(1) TEU; Article 47 CFR

 
C-603/22 M.S. e.a.
 
 Separation of Powers  


Judge in present case was removed from her office by order of the Minister of Justice. The referring court doubts whether an executing authority such as the Minister of Justice may, at the pre-trial phase and during the judicial proceedings, intervene in the process of direct application of EU law by linking powers of supervision of the courts with the powers arising from the exercise of the office of Attorney General.

 

C-711/22 Advance Pharma
 
 Effective Judicial Protection  


The ECtHR found a violation of Article 6(1) ECHR, stating that the judicial formation involved in the case is not a “court established by law”. Subsequently, the applicant requested the reopening of the national procedure. The preliminary question is about whether the refusal to reopen as a result of the ECtHR judgment led to the deprivation of the guarantee of effective judicial protection.

 

C-658/22 Sąd Najwyższy
 
 Regularity of Composition of Judiciary  


Given doubts by the majority of judges of the Civil Chamber about the regularity of the appointments of judges in the Sąd Najwyższy (Supreme Court), the latter asked a preliminary question about the regularity of the composition of the judicial formation.

 

C-114/23Sapira
 
 Independence and impartiality  


The question is, among other things, whether EU law precludes national regulations that prevent a court from entering into proceedings for the enforcement of an irrevocable criminal conviction to investigate whether the judgment to be enforced was passed by a court that satisfies the requirements of an institution under law, independence and impartiality.

 

C-448/23Commission v Poland
C-442/23 Poland v Parliament and Council
C-444/23 Poland v Parliament and Council
C-451/23Poland v Parliament and Council
C-459/23 E.
C-390/23Rzecznik Finansowy 27/06/2023
Independence of the judiciary and the right to an effective judicial protection

The referring court questions the compatibility with EU law of a national mechanism for reviewing final judgments performed by a court composed by members (i) who are not professional judges (or even lawyers), (ii) whose method of appointment differs from that of judges, and (iii) who do not benefit from all the guarantees of independence provided for in respect of judges.

C-748/23Gekus
 
 Execution of Polish judgment in Ireland  


The defendant contests a judgment to be enforced in Ireland, alleging a violation of their right to access to court due to involvement of a judge delegated by the Polish Minister of Justice. They question the impartiality of Judge ‘JG’ at the highest Polish court. The referring judge seeks clarity on the standards of judicial impartiality and independence, particularly regarding JG’s appointment process. Prejudicial questions inquire if appointment circumstances can impact judicial impartiality and if judges implicated in such appointments can participate in assessing judicial independence.

C-273/24Naski
Independence Chamber Extraordinary Control

This case involves the Supreme Court of Poland questioning whether judges appointed under disputed circumstances, particularly those in the Chamber of Extraordinary Control and Public Affairs, should be excluded from hearing a specific case (I NO 47/18). The core issue pertains to ensuring that judicial panels adhere to EU law requirements of independence and impartiality, especially considering the legality of their appointments under Polish national law. The Supreme Court seeks guidance on whether EU law precludes these judges from participating in decisions or holding executive positions within the court if their appointments were flawed.

C-718/21Krajowa Rada Sądownictwa21/12/2023ECLI:EU:C:2023:1015
 
 Independence Chamber Extraordinary Control  


The main question is whether the referring court, the “Chamber of Extraordinary Control and Public Affairs” of the Supreme Court in Poland (the Sąd Najwyższy), can be classified as a “court” within the meaning of Article 267 TFEU. Contrary to the A-G, the Court answers that question in the negative. Although the Court had previously ruled (in Getin Noble Bank, C-132/20) that the Sąd Najwyższy, as such, meets the requirements of independence, that presumption may be rebutted if a final judicial decision of a national or international court would lead to the conclusion that the referring court is not an independent, impartial tribunal established by law ex Art 19(1) TEU, Art 47 Charter. With extensive reference to and analogous application of ECHR case-law (Dolinska-Ficek and Ozimek v. Poland), the Court concludes that in this case the presumption is deemed to be rebutted. The Court therefore declares the preliminary question inadmissible.

 


Dashboard Rule Of Law Cases – Poland – ECtHR

Case NumberNameDate of JudgementSummary
35778/07 (discontinued)Żemek and others v. Poland
impartiality of judge

Article 6 § 1 ECHR; complaint that assigned judge in breach of the relevant provisions of the Code of Criminal Procedure and that thejudge had not been impartial, alleged links of the judge with the Law and Justice party and close ties to the (current) Justice Minister Ziobro which later appointed the judge Secretary of State

65313/13Maciszewski and Others v. Poland23/06/2020
definition of a court/tribunal

Art. 6 ECHR; complaint under Article 6 § 1 that the Poznań District Court was not a “tribunal established by law” on account of the alleged irregularities concerning the secondment of the Regional Court’s Judge

62765/14, 62769/14, 62772/14 and 11708/18Sobczyńska and Others v. Poland
refusal to appoint judges to vacant posts

Art. 6 and 8 ECHR; refusals by Polish presidents Kaczynski and Duda to appoint the judges in 2008 and 2016 respectively to vacant posts in various courts without any reasoning and despite positive recommendations of the National Council of the Judiciary

26691/18Broda v. Poland29/06/2021
premature termination of judge’s mandate

Art. 6 ECHR; premature termination of terms of judges without any reasoning who had been appointed as court vice-presidents and absence of any possibility to seek judicial review

27367/18Bojara v. Poland29/06/2021
premature termination of judge’s mandate

Art. 6 ECHR; same issues as in Broda v. Poland – removal of judges from their positions as court vice-presidents during their terms of office without providing reasons

39650/18Żurek v. Poland16/06/2022
premature termination of judge’s mandate

Art. 6 ECHR violated, as very essence of right of access to court impaired; Art 10 ECHR also violated, since measures, as part of intimidation strategy, had chilling effect on judges’ participation in public debate on legislative reforms affecting the judiciary and on its independence; interference not “necessary in a democratic society”.

43572/18Grzęda v. Poland15/03/2022
premature termination of judge’s mandate

Violation of Art. 6 ECHR; interruption of the mandate of a supreme administrative court judge elected to the National Council of Judiciary before the end of its four-year term. In partucular lack of judicial review

4907/18Xero Flor v. Poland07/05/2021
unlawful appointmentof Constitutional Court judge

Art. 6 ECHR, unlawful appointment of one individual to the captured and unlawfully composed Constitutional Court; partly concurring, partly dissenting opinion of judge Wojtyczek

21181/19, 51751/20Tuleya v. Poland06/07/2023
Disciplinary proceedings against Polish judge Tuleya

Polish judge Tuleya, critic of judiciary reform, was suspended by the Disciplinary Chamber of the Polish Supreme Court and his immunity was lifted. The Court found a violation of arts. 6, 8 and 10 ECHR: (i) the Disciplinary Chamber cannot be regarded as an independent and impartial tribunal established by law; (ii) the measures are a deliberate strategy to intimidate and silence the complainant and other judges.

25226/18, 25805/18, 38378/19Pająk and others v Poland
retirement age of judges

Art. 6 ECHR; retirement age of judges, contrary to the irremovability of judges, alleged violation of Art. 6 ECHR as there was no remedy available to applicant for the refusal of the NJC to grant her permission to continue to work

50849/21

Wałęsa v. Poland23/11/2023
Systemic violations of the Polish judicial reform

The Court found a breach of the rights of the Polish former president Lech Wałęsa, namely the right to an independent and impartial tribunal established by law, the principle of legality and the right to respect for private and family life, because of the Polish reform of the judiciary. Most importantly, the Court seized the opportunity to apply the pilot-judgment procedure in this case, calling on Poland to implement measures to address “systematic violations” caused by the latest judicial reforms.

43447/19, 49868/19 and 57511/19Reczkowicz and two Others v. Poland22/07/2021
chambers of Supreme Court

Art. 6 ECHR; complaints brought by barrister and two judges in relation to the two new chambers of the Supreme Court (Disciplinary Chamber and thee Chamber of Extraordinary Control and Public Affairs), which they claim were constituted in breach of the law following changes to the judiciary introduced in 2017

49868/19 and 57511/19Dolińska – Ficek and Ozimek v. Poland
08/11/2021
lack of independence of NCJ

Art. 6 ECHR; the case concerned complaints brought by two judges that the Chamber of Extraordinary Review and Public Affairs (one of the two new chambers of the Supreme Court), which had decided on cases concerning them, had not been a “tribunal established by law” and had lacked impartiality and independence, the ECtHR ruled that Poland must take rapid action to resolve the lack of independence of the National Council of the Judiciary

1469/20Advance Pharma Sp. z o.o v. Poland03/02/2022
National Council of the Judiciary

Art. 6 ECHR; complaint brought by a pharmaceutical company that the Civil Chamber of the Supreme Court, which decided on a case concerning it, was constituted on the recommendations of the National Council of the Judiciary and thus in breach of the law following changes to the judiciary introduced in 2017

13278/20Biliński v. Poland
National Council of the Judiciary

Art. 6 ECHR; the applicant was judge at a District court and ruled on many freedom-of-expression cases. Some of these cases were perceived as unfavourable by the government and therefore criticized by politicians of the ruling party. The applicant claims that his transfer to another court was handled in breach of Article 6 ECHR and that the National Council of Judiciary lacked impartiality.

26004/20Pionka v. Poland
disciplinary proceedings against judges

Art. 6 and 8 ECHR; the case concerns proceedings before the domestic courts following the applicant’s declaration of means lodged in accordance with his role as a prosecutor. He was prosecuted for alleged incorrect declaration of means, which eventually came before the Disciplinary Chamber of the Supreme Court. That body overturned the previous decision of the Disciplinary Court at the General Prosecutor and allowed the prosecution to go forward and suspended the applicant from his official duties

28122/20 and 48599/20Brodowiak and Dżus v. Poland
judicial independence

Art. 6 ECHR; the applicants complain that their cases were not heard by an “independent and impartial tribunal established by law”

35599/20Juszczyszyn v. Poland06/10/2022
Disciplinary Chamber of the Supreme Court, judicial independence

Violation of Art 6 ECHR, given grave irregularities in appointment of judges. Essence of  right to “tribunal established by law” undermined and independence and impartiality of Disciplinary Chamber compromised; Violation of Art 8 ECHR, as unlawful suspension of judge; Violation of Art 18 ECHR (in conjunction with Art 8 ECHR), as restriction for unauthorised purposes.

43949/19Jezierska v. Poland
retirement age of judge

Art. 6, 8 and 14 ECHR; complaint by judge that was forced to retire based on legislation that has been deemed unlawful by CJEU (C-192/18), concerns issues such as judicial independence, discrimination by age/gender, access to court

1819/21KB and others v. Poland
unlawful composition of Constitutional Court, abortion ruling by Constitutional Court

Art. 3, 6, and 8 ECHR; unlawful composition of Constitutional Court, impartiality of judges, violation of Art. 3/8 by abortion ruling of Polish Constitutional Court

18380/22Maciej Rutkiewcz v Poland
suspension of a judge by the Disciplinary Chamber of the Supreme Court

Art. 3, 8, and 18 ECHR; impartiality of judges

3639/21K.C. and Others v. Poland
unlawful composition of Constitutional Court, abortion ruling by Constitutional Court

Art. 3, 6, and 8 ECHR; unlawful composition of Constitutional Court, impartiality of judges, violation of Art. 3/8 by abortion ruling of Polish Constitutional Court

3801/21 (discontinued)A.L. – B. and Others v. Poland
unlawful composition of Constitutional Court, abortion ruling by Constitutional Court

Art. 3, 6, and 8 ECHR; unlawful composition of Constitutional Court, impartiality of judges, violation of Art. 3/8 by abortion ruling of Polish Constitutional Court

40119/21M.L. v. Poland14/12/23
composition of Constitutional Court, restrictive abortion laws

The ECtHR ruled that the Poland’s ban on abortion in cases of foetal abnormality, following a 2020 Constitutional Court judgment, violated the applicant’s right to respect for private life under Article 8 ECHR. The ECtHR emphasized the importance of the rule of law, stating that any interference with Article 8 rights must come from a “lawful” body. However, it found that the Constitutional Court’s composition involved judges appointed through a procedure previously deemed in breach of the Convention, undermining the legitimacy of the ruling.

32589/22, 35548/22 and 42267/22

Frankowski and Others v. Poland

14/12/2023
fair trial rights

The ECtHR found Poland in violation of Articles 6(1) and 13 ECHR due to excessive length of criminal proceedings and lack of effective remedies in domestic law.

Dashboard Rule of Law Cases – Romania – CJEU

Case NumberNameDate of JudgementECLI:EU:C:Summary
Joined Cases C‑83/19, C‑127/19; C‑195/19, Case C-291/19 & Case C-355/19Asociaţia Forumul Judecătorilor Din România08/05/20212021:393
judicial reform, Cooperation and Verification Mechanism (CVM)

Romanian reforms in the areas of judicial organisation, the disciplinary regime applicable to judges, financial State liability and the personal liability of judges as a result of judicial error, Interim appointment of Romanian Chief Judicial Inspector and establishment of specific prosecution section for members of the judiciary, the cases concern the legal effect of decisions and reports based on the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism (MCV) established by Commission Decision 2006/928 which assesses the progress of Bulgaria and Romania with regard to the rule of law situation

C-357/19Euro Box Promotion and Others21/12/20212021:1034
Mechanism for Cooperation and Verification (CVM)

Mechanism for Cooperation and Verification (CVM), Art. 19 TEU, Art. 47 CFR

C-379/19DNA- Serviciul Teritorial Oradea 2021:174
Cooperation and Verification Mechanism (CVM)

Art. 2 and 19 TEU, Art. 47 CFR, Commission Decision 2006/928/EC (Cooperation and Verification Mechanism); the intervention of the Constitutional Court (a political/judicial body which is not part of the judiciary or the legislature) might restrict the constitutional jurisdiction of the courts – which prevents national courts from exercising its jurisdictional role, the referring court asks the CJEU if this is a breach of the obligations of Romania following its accessioin to the EU as regulated in the CVM

C-397/19Statul Român – Ministerul Finanţelor Publice08/05/20212021:393see judgement in Asociaţia Forumul
Judecătorilor Din România
C-547/19Asociaţia “Forumul Judecătorilor din România”
Constitutional Court, judicial independence

Art. 2 & 29 TEU, Art. 47 CFR; intervention of a constitutional court (a body which is not, under national law, a judicial institution), concerns about interpretation and application of infra-constitutional legislation in the activity of establishing panels hearing cases by constitutional court as it might compromise judicial independence and the rule of law

C-811/19FQ and Others 2021:175
Constitutional Court, judicial independence

Art. 19 TEU, Art. 47 CFR; similar to Joined Cases C‑357/19 and C‑547/19, Euro Box Promotion and Others and aspects of Asociaţia Forumul Judecătorilor din România and Others, position and competences of Constitutional Court of Romania, should Art. 47 CFR interpreted as encompassing the requirement of the specialisation of judicial panels.

C-840/19NC
Constitutional Court, judicial independence

Art. 2 and 19 TEU, Art. 47 CFR; similar to other cases concerning position and competences of Constitutional Court as it is a body outside of the judiciary but rules on composition of judge panels seized of the case of a chamber of the supreme court

Joined Cases C-859/19, C-926/19, C-929/19FX and Others2022:878
 
 Constitutional Court, Judicial independence  


Not precluded is national law that prescribes that the decisions of the national constitutional court are binding on ordinary courts, provided the independence of that constitutional court is guaranteed by national law. Yet, precluded is national law that can trigger disciplinary liability of national judges of ordinary courts when they fail to comply with the decisions of the national constitutional court.

 

C-926/19BR and Others
Constitutional Court, judicial independence

Art. 2 TEU, Art. 47 CFR, primacy of EU law; competences of Constitutional Court of Romania (body outside judicial system)

C-929/19CD
Constitutional Court, judicial independence

Art. 19 TEU, ARt. 47 CFR, Directive 2017/1371 and Directive 2015/849; requirements arising from EU law in respect of the organisational and procedural arrangements within national judiciaries and their relations with national constitutional courts when it comes to the examination of corruption cases

C-216/21Asociaţia “Forumul Judecătorilor din România”2023:116
Cooperation and Verification Mechanism (CVM)

Art. 2 and 19 TEU, Art. 47 CFR, Commission Decision 2006/928/EC; can the CVM be considered an act by an EU institution and thus subject of interpretation by CJEU; can the principle of judicial independence be interpreted as also applying to procedures for the promotion of judges in office, requirement for infringement of judicial independence concerning promotion to a higher court by a body that carries out both assessments of judges for promotion purposes and the judicial review of judgments delivered by those judges;promotion of judges to executive positions, contrary to CVM recommendations

C-430/21RS22/02/20222022:99
Constitutional Court, judicial independence

Art. 2 and 19 TEU, Art. 47 CFR; disciplinary procedure and disciplinary penalty of the judge for failing to comply with a decision of the Constitutional Court, primacy of the EU law

C-83/19Asociaţia “Forumul Judecătorilor din România”18/5/20212021:393
Coordination and verification mechanism

coordination and verification mechanism

C-40/21Agenția Națională de Integritate04/05/20232022:873
Proportionality principle

The Court ruled that the principle of proportionality must be understood to mean that it does not preclude national legislation that establishes a measure prohibiting the holding of any elective public office for a predetermined period of three years against a person who has been discovered to have a conflict in holding such an office provided that, in light of all relevant circumstances, the application of that legislation results in the imposition of a penalty.

C-709/21 (discontinued)MK2022:338
Constitutional Court

Article 2 and 19(1) TEU; Article 47 CFR

C-718/21Krajowa Rada Sądownictwa2023:150
Retirement age of judges

Article 2 and 19(1) TEU; Article 47 CFR.

C-817/21

RI11/05/20232023:55
 
 Judicial independence and impartiality  


Preliminary reference procedure on independence and impartiality of courts under EU law. According to AG Collins, EU law precludes national legislation making the Deputy Chief Inspector responsible for overseeing the investigation of complaints against the Chief Inspector.

 

C-107/23PPU (Lin)24/07/232023:606
Primacy of EU law

Primacy of EU law precludes ordinary national courts from being bound by case law of higher national courts which is contrary to EU law. It also precludes discplinary liability of the judges concerned when they don’t follow the precedents.

 

C-216/21Asociaţia “Forumul Judecătorilor din România”07/09/20232023:628
Procedure for the promotion of judges

EU law does not preclude the promotion of judges to a higher court being based on an assessment, by a board composed of (i) the president and (ii) members of that higher court, of their work and conduct. However, the relevant substantive conditions and procedural rules must be such that they cannot give rise to reasonable doubts as to the independence and the impartiality of the judges concerned, once promoted.

C-53/23Asociaţia Forumul Judecătorilor din România08-05-20242024:104
 
 Locus standi associations  


Question raised was whether associations of judges and prosecutors, established to promote an independent, impartial and effective judiciary, can rely on arts 2 and 19(1)TEU, read in the light of arts 12 and 47 Charter, to show that they have locus standi to bring actions before a national court in furtherance of those objectives? Court: above mentioned arts do not preclude national legislation which makes the admissibility of an action for annulment of the appointment of prosecutors responsible for criminal prosecutions against magistrates conditional on the existence of a legitimate private interest, thereby precluding in practice the possibility of a professional association of magistrates bringing such an action appeal in defense of the principle of judicial independence.

 


Dashboard Rule Of Law Cases – Romania – ECtHR

Case NumberNameDate of JudgementSummary
30745/18Cotora v. Romania07/01/2023
disciplinary proceedings against judge

The term “court” within the meaning of Article 6(1) of the ECHR covers not only courts but also bodies with the competence and task to resolve matters and disputes based on law. The Court concludes that there is no violation of Article 6(1) ECHR.

36889/18 Camelia Bogdan v. Romania20/10/2020
disciplinary proceedings against judge

Violation of Art. 6 ECHR, given impossibility of challenging the automatic suspension of a judge’s duties and salary while her appeal against exclusion from the judiciary is being examined

3594/19Kövesi v. Romania05/05/2020
premature termination chief prosecutor Kövesi

premature termination of mandate as chief prosecutor of the National Anticorruption Directorate, violation of Art. 6 (right to a fair trial) and Art. 10 (right to freedom of expression) ECHR

16915/21Danilet v. Romania
freedom of expression of judges

Art. 10 ECHR; concerns a disciplinary sanction imposed on the applicant who was accused of having damaged the reputation of the office of magistrate in his publications

34088/17Onofraş v. Romania
Impartiality of judges

Art. 6 ECHR meaning of ‘impartial tribunal’

45229/18Majeczki v. Romania
Impartiality of judges

Art. 6 ECHR, former prosecutor accused of bribe

46/15, 744/15Nastase v. Romania06/09/2022
  Impartial judiciary and fair trial  

Applicants’ complaints about the lack of impartiality of the bench were declared inadmissible by the Court.