Sun. Aug 14th, 2022

15 July 2022

The advisory panel on judicial appointments provided for in Article 255 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union published today its seventh activity report.

The panel’s task is to give an opinion on candidates’ suitability to perform the duties of judge and advocate-general of the Court of Justice and the General Court. Its opinions are intended to inform member states’ governments before they decide on the appointments.

The activity report of the panel provides a summary of the panel’s work from October 2019 until February 2022. It also includes detailed information on the procedures it has established for assessing the candidates and how it interprets the requirements set out in the Treaty.

During the period covered by the report, the panel delivered opinions on 53 candidates for the offices of judge or advocate-general at the EU courts. 29 opinions were related to first terms of office, which entailed extensive examination and hearings by the panel. In total, seven of the opinions were unfavourable. The panel’s opinions were followed by member states’ governments in all cases.

Background

The Article 255 panel is composed of seven persons chosen from among former members of the Court of Justice and the General Court, members of national supreme courts and lawyers of recognised competence. The panel in office since 1 March 2022 has the following members:

  • Mr Allan Rosas, former Judge of the Court of Justice of the European Union (President of the panel)
  • Mr Frank Clarke, former Chief Justice of Ireland and former President of the Supreme Court
  • Ms Julia Laffranque, Judge of the Supreme Court of Estonia and former Judge of the European Court of Human Rights
  • Ms Maria Eugénia Martins de Nazaré Ribeiro, former judge of the General Court of the European Union
  • Ms Barbara Pořízková, Judge and Vice-President of the Czech Supreme Administrative Court
  • Ms Silvana Sciarra, Judge of the Italian Constitutional Court
  • Mr Vassilios Skouris, former Judge and President of the Court of Justice of the European Union

Candidates are assessed against six sets of criteria: their legal capabilities, professional experience, their ability to perform the duties of a judge, their language skills, their ability to work as part of a team in an international environment in which several legal systems are represented, and guarantees of their independence, impartiality, probity and integrity. The panel stresses, however, that its assessment of candidates is an overall assessment.

The panel’s assessment of individual candidates is not disclosed to the general public. In order to inform the general public, however, the panel’s activity reports provide detailed information on its working methods and approach to assessment.

The panel’s secretariat is provided by the General Secretariat of the Council.

Source – EU Council