European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg: Examples of Swiss requests
About the Court
The European Court of Human Rights is an international court based in Strasbourg. It consists of a number of judges equal to the number of member States of the Council of Europe that have ratified the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms – currently forty-six (May 2006) . The Court’s judges sit in their individual capacity and do not represent any State. In dealing with applications, the Court is assisted by a Registry consisting mainly of lawyers from all the member States (who are also known as legal secretaries). They are entirely independent of their country of origin and do not represent either applicants or States.
All alleged violations of human rights are referred directly to the Court. In the majority of cases the Court sits in Chambers of seven judges. It decides on the admissibility and merits of applications and if necessary undertakes an investigation. The Court will also place itself at the disposal of the parties with a view to securing a friendly settlement of the matter on the basis of respect for human rights as defined in the Convention and the protocols thereto. Hearings are public unless the Court in exceptional circumstances decides otherwise.
Within a period of three months from the date of the judgment of the Chamber, any party to the case may, in exceptional cases (serious questions affecting the interpretation or application of the Convention or the protocols thereto, or serious issues of general importance), request that the case be referred to the Grand Chamber. If the request is accepted, the resulting judgment of the Grand Chamber will be final. Judgments of Chambers will become final when the parties declare that they will not request that the case be referred to the Grand Chamber, or have made no request for reference three months after the date of the judgment, or, if such a request is made, when the panel of the Grand Chamber rejects the request to refer.
To find decision referring to Swiss requests
Please consult directly the European Court of Human Rights Portal (since 1991)
(name of requester v. Switzerland)