The EU Enforcement Atlas Project: information on enforcement procedures in the EU member states is now easily accessible

 

Together with the Centre of European Constitutional Law (Athens, Greece), the UIHJ initiated the project Enforcement Atlas, funded by the European Commission.

During the past decennia, the EU has focused on the mutual recognition of judicial decisions and judgments. Enforcement of such judicial decisions is an important aspect of judicial cooperation in civil matters. A number of Regulations set the framework for this cooperation. Meanwhile, judgments issued in one member state can be easily enforced in another EU member state.  For such legal cooperation and interaction, it is important that information is available.

When it comes to the actual enforcement of judicial and extrajudicial documents within the European Union, enforcement procedures are carried out on a national level respecting the independence of the national judicial systems and national features. Yet, there is a lack of open, reliable, and updated information on enforcement agents and enforcement procedures, and their costs. To this moment, the available information on enforcement methods, the application of the enforcement procedures, and the connected enforcement costs per Member State is hardly available outside such Member State.

The project addresses this problem. The project aims to cover the information gap with regard to enforcement procedures, requirements, costs, and timing in the EU-27 and the United Kingdom and make this information widely available to all interested parties.

As a first step the project conducted, through 29 experts,  in-depth data collection at the level of member states, inventories of enforcement procedures, organization of enforcement, and costs of enforcement in the EU member states and the United Kingdom (with three separate enforcement systems in England and Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland).

Based on this information, 29 narrative reports are issued, as well as a summary of each enforcement system. During the coming weeks, this information will be available on the websites of the International Union of Judicial Officers (www.uihj.com), the European Union of Judicial Officers (www.uehj.eu), and the project website (www.enforcementatlas.eu).