Annual overview of activities

AuthorCourt of Justice of the European Union
Annual manage ment report - 2018
The activ ity of the registries of t he Court of Justice and of the Gene ral Court is marked by their dual role,
which derive s from the tasks assigned to t hem:
XX an external role, in so far as the registries are the natu ral interlocutors of the parties th roughout the
court p roceedings, from the lodging of the document in stituting the proceedings at t he registry of
the court conce rned until service of th e decision which closes the proce edings;
XXan internal role, in so far as the registries assis t the Members of the courts in the daily administrati on
of justice.
n the light of the fac t that they share the same mission, the regis tries of the two courts face the same
risks that are likely to hinder their activitie s. They are nevertheless required to perform tasks specic to
them due, inter alia , to the dierent nature of the proce edings brought before them.
n their d ay-to-da y operations , the registr ies strive t o take the nece ssary ste ps to ensure tha t each stage
of t he j udic ial pro cess is o pti mise d, w hil e ens uri ng t hat t he f und ame nta l gua ran tee s of a fai r tr ial a re ne ver
undermined. W ithout being exhausti ve, the present contribut ion indicates some of the resul ts achieved
by th e regist ries co mpared w ith the object ives wh ich the y had set t hemsel ves for the nan cial yea r 2018.
(1) Results of operations in relation to the main obje ctives
yExternal aspec ts of the activities of the registries of the courts
As gateway of their court , the registries play an intermediary r ole between the part ies and the court in
the context of proc essing cases brought b efore it.  n tha t reg ard , the r egi st ri es en sur e t ha t p ro cee di ngs
run smooth ly and case -les are kept in good order. T hat mission requ ires them in particular to carry o ut
the follow ing tasks:
XXcommunication with the national courts, the parties and their representatives and correspondence
with the par ties and with third par ties in connection with p ending or closed cases;
XXkeeping a record of the procedural document s of each court and managing case- les in cases before
the court;
receipt, f orwarding and keep ing of all documen ts and noticat ions required under the Rules of
management and updating of the elec tronic procedural document storage system (either directly,
using the e-Curia applica tion, or by sc anning all other p rocedural documents) and updating the
procedural data bases of the registries;
XXmanagement of the translations of procedural document s into the language of deliberation and their
forwarding to M embers of the court;
ensuring t he presence of a session regist rar during oral hearings and the delivery of Opinions and
judgments, and preparing the minutes of the h earings;
XXmanaging the cour ts publications;
XXarchiving ca se les, and
XXproduction o f court statistic s.
To carry out those variou s tasks, the registries work together with t he Directorate for nformation
Technologies to improve common T applications in o rder to optimise and ensure the se curity of the
processing of cases, taking into account the speci c requirements resulting from the implementation of
the rules of proce dure of their courts and the na ture of the cases brought before them.
One of the most tangib le results of this cooperation ha s been the e- Curia application , which allows
secure lodging and ser vice of procedural documen ts by exclusively electronic means. The succes s of that
application , launched in November 2011, has remained un abated, given that th e procedural documents
being lodge d via this chan nel represented mo re than 75% of t he total documen ts lodged at t he Court
of Justi ce in 2018 and 85% of the total of documents lodged before the Ge neral Court duri ng the rst
11 months of that year.
Pursuing the process of digit alisation of court proceedings in order to avail of all of the intended ben ets
thereof, the Cour t of Justice and the General Cou rt carried out reforms to e nhance the use of e-Curia:
XXat the General Cour t, e-Curia has become the only me thod of lodging documents and of noti cation
of pleadings in the context of ac tions brought before t he court since 1 Decemb er 2018. ndeed, use
of this applicat ion has been made obligator y for all parties (applicant s, defendants and inter veners)
and for all ty pes of procedures. Cert ain exceptions have however bee n foreseen in accordance with
the principl e of access to the cour ts (in particul ar where the use of e -Curia is technicall y impossible
8Annual manage ment report - 2018
or where legal aid is re quested by an applicant who is not represented by a lawyer). The specic
objectiv e which the Regis try of the G eneral Court set itself in the context of the nancial year 2018
has thus been achie ved;
XXat the Court of Justice, all of the Member States already use e-Curia since 2016 in the context of direct
actions brou ght before the court. n ord er to widen the eld of users and, t herefore, strengthe n the
celerity and ecienc y of justice, work is in progress in order to also make e-Curia available to national
courts in th e context of requests for p reliminary rulings which t hey transfer to the Court .
The extensive (and, a fortiori, exclusi ve) use of the application thus allows the work involved in digitalising
documents lodged in paper format to be b rought to an end while drasticall y reducing the constraints
linked to th e management of a p lurality of forma ts  which leads , for example, in the case of lodg ing in
paper forma t preceded by lodgin g by fax, to a du plicate entry in the database and to the verication of
the conformit y of the document lodged in paper form at. Those developments have inter alia allowed the
General Court to simp lify the rules on the present ation of procedural documents, sin ce the obligation to
lodge certi ed copies of the original has been d iscontinued.
n line with the nstitutions reections over the past several years and following its observations on the
Special Repor t of the European Court of Audit ors adopted in September 2017 4, preparatory work for the
design of an i ntegrated T sys tem to support the m anagement of cases also b egan in the spring of 2018
and the re gistries of the Co urt of Justice and the General Cour t have already t aken a very act ive part in
this work.
Finally, th e registries re ceive numerous req uests for infor mation and access to documents, which they
process, either alone or together with t he Communication D irectorate. More ge nerally, the regist ries
reply to a wide range of questions, wheth er from representati ves of parties involve d in legal proceedings,
cabinet st a, department sta or t hird parties.
yInternal aspects of th e activities of the re gistries of the courts
The registrie s of the Court of Justice and of the General Cour t also have the role of providing active legal
assistance to Me mbers and their s ta in the managem ent of proceedings.
The degree of procedural management as sistance given varies according to the court s and according to
the t ype of proceedings invo lved. Assis tance granted to Member s and thei r sta takes the form, inter
alia, of mak ing information of a procedural nature a vailable, either on line or in other for mats, sustain ed
eorts being made by the reg istries to encourage uniform application of the Rules of Procedure by the
various chamb ers.
4| Special Repo rt No 19 (20 17) of the Eur opean Court of Auditor s: Examinat ion of per formance in the managemen t of cases at the
Court of Jus tice of the Europe an Union.
Annual manage ment report - 2018

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