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Au service de la profession d’huissier de justice dans le monde depuis 1952
At the Service of the Profession of Judicial Officer in the World since 1952
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HomeSéparateurFocusSéparateurUIHJSéparateurPresidents meetingsSéparateurMeeting of the presidents of Europe
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Meeting of the presidents of Europe

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On 3 March 2005 the now traditional meeting of the presidents of Europe was held in Paris, at the French national chamber of judicial officers

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UIHJ membership cards for all the judicial officers in the world

Seventeen delegations were present or represented, amongst which Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Holland, Hungary, Lithuania, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia and Sweden.
The president Isnard made a presentation of the operation AD 300. The executive board of UIHJ has decided to open UIHJ to the direct membership of judicial officers. From now on, they will be able to get a Membership card and benefit from advantages such as a free subscription to UIHJ Magazine or special rates for UIHJ events opened to judicial officers. A list of members will be published on the UIHJ website (www.uihj.com).

Jacques Isnard also mentioned that the members of UIHJ are still associations, orders or chambers of judicial officers and that only those organisations can participate and vote.

Modestly, the board had set the number of members to 300 for the operation to be a success. Today, there are none less than 700 members and more are joining in. This shows the interest of UIHJ throughout the world. The record of memberships is held by Hungary: the total of the 200 Hungarian judicial officers have decided to become personal members of UIHJ. “We cannot forget ten years of help of UIHJ” stated Zoltan Levante, president of the National chamber of Hungary, under a thunder of applause ! Our warmest congratulations to our Hungarian colleagues who are an example to all.

Reforms and contacts

Hans Eckhard Gallo, president of the German Gerichtsvollzieher reminded that Germany is working hard for the creation of an independent body of judicial officers in his country. Besides, some Lander are well advanced and want to establish a plan for the setting up of such an independent profession.

Preketes Efthimios, president of the Greek Chamber, said that a Greek delegation went to Cyprus on 8 February 2005. It was there decided to start working on the reform of the profession to adopt a status based on the Greek and French models.
Zoltan Levante told us that contact was made with Ukraine at a meeting that was held in Hungary in February 2005 and that was attended by the vice-minister of Justice of Ukraine.

The difficult application of the 1348/2000 EC Regulation

The workshops succeeded with the usual fast pace of such a dense event. The first workshop dealt with a report and perspectives of the EC Regulation 1348/2000 on the transmission and service of documents. It was presented by Leo Netten (the Netherlands), Roland De Meerleer (Belgium), Roger Dujardin (Belgium), Francis Guépin (France), Zoltan Levante (Hungary) and Preketes Efthimios (Greece).

A full report was thus given of the public hearing that took place at the European Commission on 4 February 2005 on the application of the EC Regulation 1348/2000 and the gaps in the text relating to its application for the practising judicial officers, notably on delays relating to the return of documents with countries like England or Greece. Concerning the new EU Member States, it is a pity that judicial officer in these countries are at present excluded from its application whereas all judicial officers in EU countries should be transmitting and receiving agencies.

The mechanism of service of documents through registered letters was - as always - strongly criticized. The discussion paper that was prepared by the Commission stated, without any justification, that the postal notification gives enough evidence that the document is received by the addressee. The reality is rather different when you know:
- that it is impossible in 50% of the cases to know exactly who signed the acknowledgement of receipt
- that it is impossible, in a vast majority of cases, to identity the writing, the stamps, the indications, and
- that the acknowledgement of receipt are filled with stripes, inscriptions, etc.

Obviously, this discussion paper is in contradiction with all the reports, notes and evidences from practitioners and it cannot be seriously supported that one day the service by post could be the general rule as a uniform procedure throughout the EU.

The future order for payment procedure

The second workshop concerned the future order for payment procedure and was presented by Hans Eckhard Gallo (Germany), Antonio Da Cuneo (Portugal), Lorenzo Chritian Ruiz Martinez (Spain), and Jos Uitdehaag (the Netherlands, member of the Committee of UIHJ). In particular, Hans Eckhard Gallo made a presentation of the current system in Germany which is comparable to the one that was proposed by the European Commission.

Francis Guépin said that the Commission wishes not only for the possibility to extend the order for payment procedure in the internal Law but also for it to replace the existing internal Law. An arm-wrestling match opposes the Council and the Commission as well as the legal Commission of the European Parliament. He reminded that the European Council in Tempera only gave a mandate for trans-border cases.

For Leo Netten, the political vision of EU is different from the one of its Member States. He estimates that, at terms, the order for payment procedure will be at the same time applicable in the internal Law and in the trans-border Law. “If we know for certain that the defendant as been reached by the documents, there should be no problem. But as long as we do not have that security, we will oppose to it with all our strength. The postal service is not reliable. And no one mentions the Mainstrat report anymore” he justly claimed.

The European enforceable title

During the third workshop, Mathieu Chardon (France, member of the Committee of UIHJ), made a critical analysis of the EC Regulation 805/2004 creating a European Enforcement Order for uncontested claims. “The text of this regulation is excessively complex, and even obscure”, he mentioned. “Practitioners might not use it if it cannot be understood and assimilated”.
Lithuania, through Roger Dujardin, made a full and remarkable intervention on the subject.

UIHJ resolution

Athe term of the meeting, the president Isnard presented to the vote of the delegations the following resolution, which was adopted.

In the light of the current situation relating to the profession on an European level, the presidents of the national chambers or associations of enforcement agents in Europe have decided that it was necessary to initiate an international conference. This conference took place in Paris on 3 March 2005 in the presence of 17 representatives of European delegations. At the term of this conference, the following resolution was adopted.

The presidents hereby present give mandate to the board of UIHJ to closely follow the evolution of the legislation on a European level, to make the relevant observations in the strict defence of the interests of the profession and, whenever necessary, to keep them informed, notably by ways of extraordinary meetings. Paris, 3rd March 2005
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