UpJudCoop 

Update on EU judicial cooperation instruments 

Implementation

The project is being implemented by EIPA Luxembourg – European Centre for Judges and Lawyers (ECJL) in partnership with KSSIP – Krajowa Szkola Sadownictwa I Prokuratury in Poland, CGAE – Consejo General De La Abogacia Espanola in Spain, Law Society – The Law Society Of Ireland in Ireland, NCA – Tuomioistuilanlaitos in Finland, CEPS – Centre for European Policy Studies in Belgium, MoJ Slovenia –Ministrstvo za Pravosodje in Slovenia and IGO-IFJ – Instituut voor Gerechtelijke Opleiding- Institut de Formation Judiciaire in Belgium.

Introduction

During the last thirty years since EU Justice and Home Affairs and then the European Union’s Area of Freedom, Security and Justice (EU AFSJ) has been launched a great number of cross border judicial cooperation instruments have been put in place which give concrete realization to the governing principles of this area: mutual recognition and mutual trust. The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) from the very beginning was not only a protagonist of upholding and defending the mutual recognition and mutual trust principles but having the exclusive authority to interpret EU law had a substantial impact on how judicial cooperation instruments are understood and applied in practice.

Member States’ national courts honouring the principle of sincere cooperation are bound by the case law of the CJEU and must give effect to it in the daily administration of EU law. Some of the EU judicial cooperation instruments are long serving widely applied legal acts giving fertile ground for judicial interpretation and refinement – e.g., European arrest Warrant. Others are more recent and because of chartering new areas of cooperation provoke questions of interpretation and application – e.g., the European Investigation Order. Maintaining and preserving the mutual trust and mutual recognition principles, being the pillars of the EU AFSJ also entails a firm commitment to the case law of the CJEU and developing national judicial practices full in line with that. This is quintessential for the more complex judicial cooperation instruments – such as the Insolvency Regulation – but equally important for the more technical instruments – such as the Service Regulation. Today mere compliance with the judicial cooperation instruments is not a goal in itself any longer, it has become a prerequisite to preserve the integrity of the EU area of justice and defend it from any potential erosion caused by rule of law backsliding EU Member States. Unqualified observance of the CJEU’s case law is not only about following its case law but entails cooperating with CJEU on a daily basis, maintaining judicial dialogue through the preliminary reference procedure and unconditionally accepting the authority of the CJEU. This is ever more relevant today at this stage of European Integration to uphold the well-functioning of the EU area of justice.

The overall objective of the project is to contribute to the effective and coherent application of EU law, especially with regard to the implementation of mutual recognition instruments in the field of judicial cooperation by increasing the correct and consistent understanding of the case law of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU). The project seeks to achieve this objective through developing sustainable training practices addressing the needs of justice professionals across the EU by providing a hands-on on continuous training on the flagship instruments of EU judicial cooperation in both civil and criminal law.

The trainings will specifically explore, the recent case law of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) in relation to the above instruments and see what issues emerged in the course of the practical application of the above mentioned instruments in which national courts sought interpretative aid from the CJEU.

The specific objectives of the project are:

  • to make the expanding case law of the CJEU regarding the selected EU judicial cooperation instruments more relevant and understandable for legal practitioners. Provide a full update of the most recent judgments and give focus especially regarding those judicial cooperation instruments which are frequently referred to the CJEU;
  • the trainings will go beyond the mere study of the said instruments and will approach them from practice-oriented point of view identifying the regulatory issues of the instruments have raised questions of interpretation in the practice of the national courts, to highlight how the CJEU’s interpretation complements the given instrument;
  • to attain a better understanding of the given EU instrument through the analysis of the interpretation handed down by the CJEU in a given case. This exercise will also allow the participants to fully appreciate the nuanced aspects of how the CJEU deals with questions regarding the interpretation of EU law and see how the findings of the court can be reflected in the application of the given EU instrument in their own national law;
  • to reflect on the directions in which case law evolves and identify trends relevant for legal practitioners.

The target audience of the project will be legal practitioners having a legal background and working in the EU Member States’ justice system, either in the capacity of a judge, prosecutor or defence lawyer. Legal practitioners linked to any of the project partner institutions personally participating in the training activities will directly and concretely benefit from the projects’ expected results regarding increased and substantiated knowledge and improved mutual trust and cooperation.

In addition, legal professionals linked to any of the project partner institutions, but not participating in the training activities will be benefiting from the project through the digital training materials, which will be translated into the official languages of the participating partner institutions i.e., Polish, Spanish, Finnish, Slovenian and French and which will be made available via the EIPA’s learning management system.

The wider audience of legal professionals not linked to any of the project partner institutions will as well benefit from the project through the digital training materials, which will be made available to the public via the project’s webpage on EIPA’s website, linked to the partner institutions platforms (websites and/or intranet).

  • to present the flagship judicial cooperation instruments and corresponding procedural guarantees EU legislation relevant in the field of criminal law and to identify which regulatory aspects of the instruments have raised questions of interpretation in the practice of the national courts;
  • to attain a better understanding of the given EU instrument through the analysis of the interpretation handed down by the CJEU in each case. This exercise will also allow the participants to fully appreciate the nuanced aspects of how the CJEU deals with questions regarding the interpretation of EU law and see how the findings of the court can be reflected in the application of the given EU instrument in their own national law;
  • to provide a full update of the most recent judgments especially regarding those judicial cooperation instruments which are frequently referred to the CJEU seeking clarification of interpretation and to identify the directions in which case law evolves;
  • the training series will give a clear occasion for judges, prosecutors, and lawyers to improve the cooperation amongst each other by understanding the elements of EU law applicable to each of them, while at the same time learning about each other’s’ jurisdictions. on Human Rights as afforded by the European Court of Human Rights.

Training activities details

The project includes eight advanced continuous training programmes followed by a half day visit to CJEU training 1-8.

  • European Arrest Warrant: 24-25 May 2023

Full programme

  • European Investigation Order: 27-28 September 2023

Full programme

  • EU Procedural guarantees instruments: 13-14 December 2023

Full programme

  • EU substantive criminal law – PIF crimes: 6-7 March 2024

Full programme

  • EU Service of documents and taking of evidence: 12-13 June 2024
  • EU Brussels I bis Regulation: 25-26 September 2024
  • EU Insolvency Regulation: 28-29 January 2025
  • EU Succession Regulation: 21-22 May 2025

This project is co-funded
by the European Union

Contact

EIPA Luxembourg
European Centre for Judges and Lawyers

Blanka Opletalova
Tel: +352 426 230 305
Mail: b.opletalova@eipa.eu

Our trainings

Technical Assistance & Consultancy

References