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The role of constitutional courts, a comparative law perspective - Canada: The Supreme Court

23-07-2019

This study is part of a wider project investigating, from a comparative law perspective, the role of constitutional courts of different states. Following a brief historical introduction to the jurisdiction of the state in question, the various reports examine the composition, internal organization, functioning, jurisdiction of the various highest courts, as well as the right of access to its courtroom, its procedural rules, and the effects and the execution of its judgments. The present study examines ...

This study is part of a wider project investigating, from a comparative law perspective, the role of constitutional courts of different states. Following a brief historical introduction to the jurisdiction of the state in question, the various reports examine the composition, internal organization, functioning, jurisdiction of the various highest courts, as well as the right of access to its courtroom, its procedural rules, and the effects and the execution of its judgments. The present study examines Canada’s highest court, the Supreme Court. While all judicial courts may rule on constitutional matters, the Supreme Court of Canada enjoys a privileged status in the Canadian legal landscape. As the ultimate arbiter of the Constitution, it has the final word with respect to constitutional interpretation, notably in constitutional matters. It thus plays a central role in Canada’s federal democracy.

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EPRS, Comparative Law

Access to legal remedies for victims of corporate human rights abuses in third countries

01-02-2019

European-based multinational corporations can cause or be complicit in human rights abuses in third countries. Victims of corporate human rights abuses frequently face many hurdles when attempting to hold corporations to account in their own country. Against this backdrop, judicial mechanisms have increasingly been relied on to bring legal proceedings in the home States of the corporations. This study attempts to map out all relevant cases (35 in total) filed in Member States of the European Union ...

European-based multinational corporations can cause or be complicit in human rights abuses in third countries. Victims of corporate human rights abuses frequently face many hurdles when attempting to hold corporations to account in their own country. Against this backdrop, judicial mechanisms have increasingly been relied on to bring legal proceedings in the home States of the corporations. This study attempts to map out all relevant cases (35 in total) filed in Member States of the European Union on the basis of alleged corporate human rights abuses in third countries. It also provides an in-depth analysis of 12 cases and identifies various obstacles (legal, procedural and practical) faced by claimants in accessing legal remedy. On the basis of these findings, it makes a number of recommendations to the EU institutions in order to improve access to legal remedies in the EU for victims of human rights abuses by European based companies in third countries.

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Dr. Axel Marx, Dr. Claire Bright, Prof. Dr. Jan Wouters, Ms. Nina Pineau, Mr. Brecht Lein, Mr. Torbjörn Schiebe, Ms. Johanna Wagner, Ms. Evelien Wauter

A Ten-Year-Long “EU Mediation Paradox”- When an EU Directive Needs To Be More …Directive

21-11-2018

Ten years since its adoption, the EU Mediation Directive remains very far from reaching its stated goals. This briefing summarises the main achievements and failures in the implementation at national level. In addition, it assesses the conclusions of previous research and of the European Parliament's resolution on the implmentation of the Mediation Directive.

Ten years since its adoption, the EU Mediation Directive remains very far from reaching its stated goals. This briefing summarises the main achievements and failures in the implementation at national level. In addition, it assesses the conclusions of previous research and of the European Parliament's resolution on the implmentation of the Mediation Directive.

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Giuseppe De Palo, Professor of Alternative Dispute Resolution Law and Practice at Mitchell Hamline School of Law, St Paul, U.S.A

Modernising judicial cooperation in civil and commercial matters: Implementation Appraisal

15-05-2018

The regulation on the service of documents and the regulation on taking of evidence are key instruments in the facilitation of cross-border cooperation between national civil courts. They have contributed to the effectiveness of cross-border litigation before civil and commercial courts by making civil proceedings in cross-border cases simpler, faster and cheaper. However, digitalisation and the use of electronic means of communication could boost their efficiency. This is why the European Commission ...

The regulation on the service of documents and the regulation on taking of evidence are key instruments in the facilitation of cross-border cooperation between national civil courts. They have contributed to the effectiveness of cross-border litigation before civil and commercial courts by making civil proceedings in cross-border cases simpler, faster and cheaper. However, digitalisation and the use of electronic means of communication could boost their efficiency. This is why the European Commission is aiming to align the two instruments with the e-government objectives of the digital single market strategy. The Commission's review process has also brought to light some other shortcomings in the application of the two regulations, such as uncertainties regarding their scope and issues relating to the protection of the rights of the defence. Current disparities in the procedural laws of the Member States lead to legal uncertainties in the application of the regulations. The Commission is seeking ways to modernise judicial cooperation in civil and commercial matters, and in particular Regulations 1393/2007/EC and 1206/2001/EC. To that end, it is currently undertaking a combined evaluation and impact assessment for both regulations at once.

THE HAGUE CONFERENCE ON PRIVATE INTERNATIONAL LAW “JUDGMENTS CONVENTION”

16-04-2018

This study, commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the JURI Committee, provides an assessment of the ongoing work of the Hague Conference on the Judgments Convention. The analysis focuses on the November 2017 Draft Convention, its interplay with international and Union instruments in the field, as well as its potential future impact on the regulation of civil and commercial cross-border disputes.

This study, commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the JURI Committee, provides an assessment of the ongoing work of the Hague Conference on the Judgments Convention. The analysis focuses on the November 2017 Draft Convention, its interplay with international and Union instruments in the field, as well as its potential future impact on the regulation of civil and commercial cross-border disputes.

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Pedro A. DE MIGUEL ASENSIO (coord.), Professor, Complutense University of Madrid, Spain Gilles CUNIBERTI, Professor, University of Luxembourg Pietro FRANZINA, Professor, University of Ferrara, Italy Christian HEINZE, Professor, Leibniz University of Hannover, Germany Marta REQUEJO ISIDRO, Senior Research Fellow, Max Planck Institute Luxembourg

The Victims' Rights Directive 2012/29/EU

14-12-2017

Directive 2012/29/EU establishing minimum standards for the rights, support and protection of victims of crime is an instrument of harmonisation that sets basic standards to be applied across the EU. It makes important procedural provisions regarding, for instance, the right to be heard, to understand and be understood, and the right to receive information, make a complaint and access support services. This study assesses the implementation of the directive and various aspects of its application: ...

Directive 2012/29/EU establishing minimum standards for the rights, support and protection of victims of crime is an instrument of harmonisation that sets basic standards to be applied across the EU. It makes important procedural provisions regarding, for instance, the right to be heard, to understand and be understood, and the right to receive information, make a complaint and access support services. This study assesses the implementation of the directive and various aspects of its application: legal transposition measures at Member State level, the practical implementation of the directive on the ground, and the benefits it has provided for victims, as well as the challenges encountered.

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The opening analysis of the study (Part I) has been prepared by Amandine Scherrer and Ivana Kiendl Krišto (EPRS, EVAL Unit) . Part II of the study was prepared by the Centre for Strategy & Evaluation Services LLP (CSES).

Effective access to justice

15-11-2017

This study, commissioned by the European Parliament Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs upon request by PETI Committee, aims to identify and understand the issues affecting effective access to justice raised by the EU citizens and residents in some Member States with the main aim to frame the analysis and obtain a fair representation of recurring issues pertaining to access to justice across the EU. It seeks to understand why citizens have turned to the EU institutions ...

This study, commissioned by the European Parliament Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs upon request by PETI Committee, aims to identify and understand the issues affecting effective access to justice raised by the EU citizens and residents in some Member States with the main aim to frame the analysis and obtain a fair representation of recurring issues pertaining to access to justice across the EU. It seeks to understand why citizens have turned to the EU institutions to seek access to justice, and looks at a large range of factors, including legal and procedural issues as well as practical, social, historical and political factors that underpin the issues raised in these petitions. More broadly, the study intends to assess the relevance of the petitions system to address access to justice issues experienced by citizens at national level.

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Ms Nathy Rass-Masson, Ms Virginie Rouas (Milieu)

Judicial remedies for individuals before the highest jurisdictions, a comparative law perspective - The United Kingdom

09-10-2017

The study presented below forms part of a larger project whose aim is to provide a comparative analysis of the rights of individuals in law proceedings before the highest courts of different States and before certain international courts. The objective is to describe the various remedies developed under domestic law that are available through the UK courts including the Supreme Court which, though not a constitutional court in the classic Kelsenian model, does sits at the apex of the appellate court ...

The study presented below forms part of a larger project whose aim is to provide a comparative analysis of the rights of individuals in law proceedings before the highest courts of different States and before certain international courts. The objective is to describe the various remedies developed under domestic law that are available through the UK courts including the Supreme Court which, though not a constitutional court in the classic Kelsenian model, does sits at the apex of the appellate court structure in the UK. The study commences with an historical introduction which stresses the absence in domestic law of a clearly delineated sense of what counts as ‘constitutional’ .In traditional accounts of the UK Constitution there is no hierarchy of higher order ‘constitutional’ and ‘ordinary’ Acts of Parliament. Neither has a separate court structure developed to handle exclusively constitutional claims, although specialised ad hoc tribunals do exist in public law contexts. The underpinning principles remain (i) the doctrine of parliamentary sovereignty and (ii) the rule of law. After this introduction, a review is provided of the main remedies and procedures used for the redress of grievances against public bodies. In a subsequent section of materials, a table of the main sources of individual rights against the state is provided. The domestic status of constitutional conventions and international law are dealt with in this part. Then, an account of the substantive norms informing the standards of effective protection for the individual is given, including some critical commentary on the operation of key provisions. The concluding section compares the benefits and drawbacks of specialised tribunal adjudication, the ‘politicised’ nature of certain judicial review proceedings against a background of increasing privately-owned provision of services to the public and the continuing relevance of private law tort claims where compensation for mistreatment at the hands of the state is sought.

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EPRS, Comparative Law

Judicial remedies for individuals before the highest jurisdictions, a comparative law perspective - United States of America

06-10-2017

This study is part of a larger project whose aim is to provide a comparative analysis of the rights of individuals in law proceedings before the highest courts of different States and before certain international courts. The objective is to describe the various remedies developed under domestic law that are available to individuals in American law, and in particular before this country’s highest courts. To that end, after a general introduction setting out the historical background, we will consider ...

This study is part of a larger project whose aim is to provide a comparative analysis of the rights of individuals in law proceedings before the highest courts of different States and before certain international courts. The objective is to describe the various remedies developed under domestic law that are available to individuals in American law, and in particular before this country’s highest courts. To that end, after a general introduction setting out the historical background, we will consider the various remedies available to individuals at both administrative and judicial level. The next step will be to look at the rules used as reference standards for the protection of individuals, and the case law of the highest courts regarding effective legal protection. Finally, we will draw some conclusions on the situation as a whole, with some suggestions for improvements. The immediate study describes the American model of judicial review, a decentralized model in which all courts have the authority to adjudicate constitutional matters alongside other types of litigation. Judicial review has been a part of major controversies throughout American history. The study describes how federal courts may hear constitutional claims of plaintiffs meeting the jurisdictional requirement for a concrete "case or controversy." It further describes the need for a plaintiff to demonstrate a cause of action in order to enforce his or her constitutional right. Remedies for constitutional violations include injunctive relief, declaratory judgments, damages, suppression of evidence, and post-conviction relief. The study also describes the absence in American law of a right to an effective remedy.

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EPRS, Comparative Law

Legal Proceedings available to Individuals before the Highest Courts: A Comparative Law Perspective - Canada

06-10-2017

This study is part of a wider project seeking to investigate, from a comparative law perspective, judicial proceedings available to individuals before the highest courts of different states, and before certain international courts. The aim of this study is to examine the various judicial proceedings available to individuals in Canadian law, and in particular before the Supreme Court of Canada. To this end, the text is divided into five parts. The introduction provides an overview of Canadian constitutional ...

This study is part of a wider project seeking to investigate, from a comparative law perspective, judicial proceedings available to individuals before the highest courts of different states, and before certain international courts. The aim of this study is to examine the various judicial proceedings available to individuals in Canadian law, and in particular before the Supreme Court of Canada. To this end, the text is divided into five parts. The introduction provides an overview of Canadian constitutional history, which explains the coexistence of rights derived from several legal traditions. It then introduces the federal system, the origins of constitutional review, as well as the court structure (I). As Canada practises a ‘diffuse’ (or ‘decentralized’) constitutional review process, the second part deals with the different types of proceedings available to individuals in matters of constitutional justice before both administrative and judicial courts, while highlighting proceedings available before the Supreme Court of Canada (II). This is followed by an examination of the constitutional and legal sources of individual — and in some cases collective — rights (III), as well as the means developed by the judiciary, the legislative, and the executive branches to ensure the effective judicial protection of rights (IV). The conclusion assesses the effectiveness of proceedings available to individuals in matters of ‘constitutional justice’. Essentially, while Canadian citizens benefit from a wide range of rights and proceedings, access to the country’s Supreme Court is restricted due to the limited number of cases the Court chooses to hear every year. More generally, access to justice continues to pose real challenges in Canada. This is not due to judicial failings or a lack of sources of rights per se, but rather to lengthy judicial delays and the often enormous costs of proceedings.

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EPRS, Comparative Law

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