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European Union of Judicial Officers
Union européenne des huissiers de justice

 
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Union européenne des huissiers de justice
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UIHJ Attends ELI General Assembly

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On 3 and 4 September in Vienna the General assembly and Annual Conference of the European Law Institute were held in the premises of the Austrian Academy of Sciences. UIHJ is one of the founding members of ELI.

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UIHJ was represented by its President, Francoise Andrieux, its former President Leo Netten, and Jos Uitdehaag, Secretary of the board.  During the General Assembly also ELI's second Council elections were held. Francoise Andrieux was elected as a Council member. The first duty of the Council was to elect the new Executive Committee of ELI. President Diana Wallis was re-elected as President of ELI.

Harriet Lansing, immediate past president of the U.S. Uniform Law Commission, did the opening ceremony keynote speech. The annual conference keynote was done by Vera Jourova, EU Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality.

ELI presented itself to the legal world through the annual conference, organised around the most important issues at stake within Europe and the ongoing ELI projects. Among the panels there was attention to the Common European Sales Law, the EU digital single market, insolvency law and migration and the Rule of Law.

Two panels were organised around issues in which UIHJ is actively involved.

The first is ELI's project “From transnational principles to European Rules of Civil Procedure” which is carried out in cooperation with Unidroit. The aim is to develop Transnational Principles to Rules of European Civil Procedure.  In order to do so, the Steering Committee has appointed three “initial” working groups (Access to Information and Evidence, Provisional and Protective Measures, and Service of Documents) between May-June 2014; and two working groups (Res Judicata, and Obligations of Parties, Lawyers and Judges) in November 2014. UIHJ is active as an observer to all these working groups. A first set of draft rules is expected to be published by 2017.

The second issue refers to the “Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets”. A panel was organised chaired by Harriet Lansing. Jos Uitdehaag acted as a panelist together with Sjef van Erp, Professor of Civil Law and European Private Law at University of Maastricht (The Netherlands) and Radim Polčák, Head of the Institute of Law and Technology at the Faculty of Law, Masaryk University (Czech Republic). The panel focused on the way the digital age has fundamentally changed the way in which we conceptualize, create, capture, and transfer value and define property. In July of 2014, the Uniform Law Commission in USA approved an act to assure that account holders could retain control of their digital property and plan for its ultimate disposition on death.

Meanwhile in several US states the Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act (UFADAA) has been introduced. This Act expands the fiduciary's traditional duties and powers. New rules were introduced to provide that the same trusted fiduciary appointed to inventory the estate, gather assets, and oversee their distribution to heirs will also have the authority to administer the deceased account holder's digital assets. The ELI and the ULC are presently conducting a feasibility study considering whether UFADAA is a successful blend of law, technology, and social practice, and if so, how such legislation may also be introduced in Europe.

Jos Uitdehaag paid attention to the impact the digital age may have on our profession. It is obvious that the digital age will also have its impact on the way the enforcement agents carry out their activities. Issues like online accounts (e.g. bit coins) will demand different legislation and demand a different approach, also from the enforcement agent, towards property rights. Also other legislation has to be taken into consideration, e.g. digital privacy aspects.
 
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Séparateur
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Prof. Dr. Christiane Wendehorst, President of ELI
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During the meeting
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Clemens Jabloner, Vice-Chancellor and Minister of Justice of Austria
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The outgoing Executive Committee of the ELI
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UEHJ

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