PROTECTION OF HUMAN RIGHTS
Equitum’s team of qualified lawyers provides comprehensive assistance in protecting the rights guaranteed by European
Union (EU), as well as human rights, which are indivisible, inalienable, and universal with regard to the equality and
dignity of each individual.
Our focus is on examining the application of supranational law in which the state knowingly and voluntarily limits its sovereignty by transferring it by delegation to a
supranational authority or union.Normative acts of supranational authorities or unions generally have greater legal force than acts of national law. The most typical example of a supranational law is that of the
In this regard, we provide legal representation in court and in particular – judicial body of the European Union – the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) in Luxembourg,as well as the European Court of Human Rights, located in
THE LAW OF THE EUROPEAN UNION
We provide legal representation in damages cases for breaches of EU law, and we provide assistance in exercising the right
of petition to the European Parliament. The EU is a unique legal system, with EU law being an integral part of the legal systems of the Member States. It includes:
– primary law, which is enshrined in the Treaties as well as in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union;
– secondary law, such as regulations, directives and decisions; as well as non-binding legal acts, such as opinions
The implementation and enforcement of EU legislation take place mainly at the national level. Art. 4, para. 3 of the Treaty on European Union (TEU) requires Member States to take
appropriate measures to ensure compliance with the obligations arising from EU law. Thus, the courts are the main guarantors of EU law, but in order to ensure its consistent application, they may ask the Court of Justice to give a preliminary ruling on questions of interpretation. This creates a dialogue between national courts and the Court of Justice. This reference for a preliminary ruling is a mechanism for interaction between the national courts of the Member States and the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU). The aim is concentrated on the uniform application of Union law. The regulation of this
mechanism at the supranational level is contained in Art. 267 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) and at the national level in Art. 628 et seq. of the Code of Civil Procedure (CPC, applicable in civil and administrative cases).
The EU Court is the guardian of the unique legal order of the EU, which includes clear obligations regarding fundamental
rights. In this regard, any person who considers that his rights have been violated could bring an action for annulment in order to review the legality of EU law including issues relating to
fundamental rights. Individuals generally need to show that they are "directly and personally affected". According to the
Court of Justice, this system of judicial review of acts issued by EU institutions is complete.
RIGHT OF ACCESS TO JUSTICE
Under EU law, the right of access to a court means that courts should be accessible. Accessibility can involve the availability of courts with relevant jurisdiction, availability of interpretation, access to information and the
accessibility of court judgments.
Under EU law, Article 47 of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights states: “Everyone is entitled to a fair and public hearing within a reasonable time by an independent and impartial tribunal previously established by law. Everyone shall have the possibility of being advised, defended, and represented”. Article 47 applies to all rights and freedoms arising from EU law; the Explanations to the Charter confirm
that it corresponds to the rights in Article 6 (1) of the ECHR, without Article 6’s limitation on civil rights and
obligations. Article 47, therefore, secures, as a minimum, the protection offered by Article 6 of the ECHR, in respect to all
rights and freedoms arising from EU law. This explicit connection means that the cases mentioned under CoE law will be relevant in EU law unless otherwise stated.
The EU Charter of Fundamental Rights applies domestically only when Member States are implementing (or derogating from) EU
law. Article 47 of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights embodies the EU legal principle that Member States must ensure
effective judicial protection of an individual’s rights arising from Union law (including Charter rights). This means that the right of access to a court applies whenever rights and freedoms guaranteed by EU law are involved.
THE RIGHT TO PETITION
Since the entry into force of the Treaty of Maastricht, every EU citizen and all natural or legal residents of the Member States have had the right to submit a petition to the European
Parliament, in the form of a complaint or a request on an issue that falls within the European Union’s fields of activity. Petitions are examined by Parliament’s Committee on
Petitions, which takes a decision on their admissibility and is responsible for dealing with them. The legal basis is related to Articles 20, 24, and 227 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) and Article 44 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union.
The right to petition aims to provide EU citizens and residents with a simple means of contacting the EU institutions with complaints or requests for action. Petitions
submitted to Parliament become public documents. Summaries of petitions are published in all official EU languages on Parliament’s Petitions Web Portal after a decision on admissibility has been taken by the Committee on Petitions, together with other relevant documents. The petitioners are informed in writing of all Committee decisions concerning their petition and of the reasons for these decisions, and provided with relevant information and documentation where appropriate once the decisions become available.
According to the Treaties, Parliament is the addressee of petitions, and therefore has the responsibility of ensuring
that the concerns expressed in those petitions are taken into full account in the EU. To do so in the best possible way, it
has given a dedicated committee, the Committee on Petitions, the task of dealing with petitions and coordinating the
institution’s follow-up activities. As highlighted in its annual reports on the deliberations of the Committee in the
preceding year, Parliament has always considered petitions as a key element of participatory democracy. It has also underlined their importance in revealing instances of
incorrect transposition and implementation of EU law by Member States. In fact, a number of petitions have led to legislative or political action, EU pilot cases, preliminary rulings, or infringement proceedings.
The Committee on Petitions is particularly active in the fields of fundamental rights (including children’s rights, discrimination, the rights of minorities, justice, free
movement, voting rights, Brexit), the environment and animal welfare, the internal market, social rights, migration, trade agreements and public health. The Committee notably plays a
special role in the protection of the rights of persons with disabilities within the EU Framework for the implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities,
and it also organises an annual workshop on disabilities – related issues.
THE CITIZENS OF THE UNION AND THEIR RIGHTS
Individual citizens’ rights and European citizenship are enshrined in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (EUCFR), the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) and Article 9 of the Treaty on
European Union (TEU). They are essential factors in the formation of a European identity. In the event of a serious breach of basic values of the Union, a Member State can be sanctioned.
For all EU citizens, citizenship implies:
– The right to move and reside freely within the territory
of the Member States (Article 21 of the TFEU) (4.1.3);
– The right to vote and to stand as a candidate in
elections to the European Parliament and in municipal
elections (Article 22(1) of the TFEU) in the Member State
in which they reside, under the same conditions as
nationals of that State (for the rules on participation
in municipal elections see Directive 94/80/EC of
19 December 1994, and for the rules governing election to
the European Parliament, see Directive 93/109/EC of
6 December 1993) (1.3.4);
– The right to diplomatic protection in the territory of a
third country (non-EU state) by the diplomatic or
consular authorities of another Member State, if their
own country does not have diplomatic representation
there, to the same extent as that provided for nationals
of that Member State;
– The right to petition the European Parliament and the
right to apply to the Ombudsman (both Article 24 of the
TFEU) appointed by the European Parliament concerning
instances of maladministration in the activities of the
EU institutions or bodies. These procedures are governed
respectively by Articles 227 and 228 of the TFEU
– The right to write to any EU institution or body in one
of the languages of the Member States and to receive a
response in the same language (Article 24(4) of the
– The right to access European Parliament, Council, and
Commission documents, subject to certain conditions
(Article 15(3) of the TFEU).
The EQUITUM team, made up of qualified professionals, can advise you on any breach of EU law and possible action.
THE EUROPEAN CONVENTION ON HUMAN RIGHTS (ECHR)
The European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) is an international treaty that can only be signed by the member states of the Council of Europe. The Convention was ratified by a law passed by the National Assembly on 31 July 1992 and
has been in force for the Republic of Bulgaria since 7 September 1992. It contains a list of rights and guarantees that countries, including Bulgaria, are obliged to respect. Respect for the fundamental rights guaranteed by the
Convention is subject to review by a judicial body – the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), located in Strasbourg.
It is a supranational court established by the European Convention on Human Rights, which ensures compliance by Member States of the rights and guarantees enshrined in the
Convention. This is done by the Court dealing with complaints lodged by individuals or legal entities or, in some cases,
When it finds that a state has violated one or more of these rights and guarantees, the Court delivers a judgment. Court judgments are binding and the parties concerned are obliged to
comply with them.
RIGHTS PROTECTED BY THE CONVENTION
The Convention and its Protocols protect:
– the right to life;
– the right to a fair trial in civil or criminal matters;
– the right to respect for private and family life;
– freedom of expression;
– freedom of thought, conscience and religion;
– the right to an effective remedy;
– the right to peaceful enjoyment of possessions;
– the right to free elections.
The Convention and its Protocols prohibit:
– torture and inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment;
– arbitrary and unlawful detention;
– discrimination in the exercise of the rights and freedoms
set forth in the Convention;
– the expulsion of citizens from their own country or their
exclusion from the territory of the country;
– the death penalty;
– the collective expulsion of foreigners.
If you consider that one or more of the countries that have ratified the Convention have violated (by an act or omission that directly affected you) the European Convention on Human Rights, you can appeal to the European Court of Human Rights.
The team of EQUITUM, composed of qualified specialists,can advise you on the possible violation of the Convention and the conditions that must be met to file a complaint to the Court.
Ул. „Капитан Райчо“ 56
ТЦ ГРАНД, ет.4, офис 14
гр. Пловдив 4000, България
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