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Pilot Judgments at the ECtHR - Altered Prospects for Individual Justice?

Björfeldt, David LU (2013) JURM02 20131
Department of Law
Abstract
Primarily due to a massively overburdened docket, the European Court
of Human Rights has been experiencing major challenges in the last decade.
The crisis has prompted it to modify its procedures and one recent innovation at the Court is the pilot judgment procedure, which is a tool for dealing with systemic deficiencies in the Member States.
This thesis assesses what the effects of the pilot judgment procedure are
on the Court’s function as a provider of individual justice. An attempt is
made to define the procedure and it is concluded that it is still in a
development phase. The thesis also evaluates risks inherent in the procedure from the perspective of individuals who have been subjected to a systemic deficiency but whose cases... (More)
Primarily due to a massively overburdened docket, the European Court
of Human Rights has been experiencing major challenges in the last decade.
The crisis has prompted it to modify its procedures and one recent innovation at the Court is the pilot judgment procedure, which is a tool for dealing with systemic deficiencies in the Member States.
This thesis assesses what the effects of the pilot judgment procedure are
on the Court’s function as a provider of individual justice. An attempt is
made to define the procedure and it is concluded that it is still in a
development phase. The thesis also evaluates risks inherent in the procedure from the perspective of individuals who have been subjected to a systemic deficiency but whose cases the Court will not examine.
The thesis starts with an overview of the ECtHR in the respect of how
it functions and what purpose it serves. It is concluded that the Court has a dual role: It is on one hand a last resort for victims of violations who have failed to attain recognition on the national level; it has on the other hand a constitutional function, to set standards and establish general principles for the protection of human rights under the ECHR. Thereafter, the norms pertaining to the pilot judgment procedure is
scrutinized and three constitutive elements of the pilot case are identified. Finally, a thorough examination of case law reveals that the procedure is still under development and has not yet matured into a formally defined concept.
Subsequently, the notion of individual justice is analyzed and it is
concluded that for victims of human rights violations it is of essence that some form of redress is provided. For this purpose it is argued that the Court should take a more active role in relation to remedies. A comparison with the Inter-American Court of Human Rights substantiates this argument. In the last chapter of the thesis some general principles are suggested for when the pilot judgment procedure should be applied. It is argued that the Court must be meticulous in the assessments of when to apply the procedure. The concern is that effectiveness gained for the institutional functioning of the Court, might result in harm for the very subjects that the Court is supposed to protect. It is argued that the Court, to the furthest extent possible, must strive to avoid such an outcome. (Less)
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author
Björfeldt, David LU
supervisor
organization
course
JURM02 20131
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
Reform of the Court, European Court of Human Rights, Procedural Human Rights Law, Pilot Judgment Procedure
language
English
id
3802117
date added to LUP
2013-06-19 08:22:08
date last changed
2013-06-19 08:22:08
@misc{3802117,
  abstract     = {Primarily due to a massively overburdened docket, the European Court
of Human Rights has been experiencing major challenges in the last decade.
The crisis has prompted it to modify its procedures and one recent innovation at the Court is the pilot judgment procedure, which is a tool for dealing with systemic deficiencies in the Member States.
This thesis assesses what the effects of the pilot judgment procedure are
on the Court’s function as a provider of individual justice. An attempt is
made to define the procedure and it is concluded that it is still in a
development phase. The thesis also evaluates risks inherent in the procedure from the perspective of individuals who have been subjected to a systemic deficiency but whose cases the Court will not examine.
The thesis starts with an overview of the ECtHR in the respect of how
it functions and what purpose it serves. It is concluded that the Court has a dual role: It is on one hand a last resort for victims of violations who have failed to attain recognition on the national level; it has on the other hand a constitutional function, to set standards and establish general principles for the protection of human rights under the ECHR. Thereafter, the norms pertaining to the pilot judgment procedure is
scrutinized and three constitutive elements of the pilot case are identified. Finally, a thorough examination of case law reveals that the procedure is still under development and has not yet matured into a formally defined concept.
Subsequently, the notion of individual justice is analyzed and it is
concluded that for victims of human rights violations it is of essence that some form of redress is provided. For this purpose it is argued that the Court should take a more active role in relation to remedies. A comparison with the Inter-American Court of Human Rights substantiates this argument. In the last chapter of the thesis some general principles are suggested for when the pilot judgment procedure should be applied. It is argued that the Court must be meticulous in the assessments of when to apply the procedure. The concern is that effectiveness gained for the institutional functioning of the Court, might result in harm for the very subjects that the Court is supposed to protect. It is argued that the Court, to the furthest extent possible, must strive to avoid such an outcome.},
  author       = {Björfeldt, David},
  keyword      = {Reform of the Court,European Court of Human Rights,Procedural Human Rights Law,Pilot Judgment Procedure},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Pilot Judgments at the ECtHR - Altered Prospects for Individual Justice?},
  year         = {2013},
}