e-News 2018/2



Photograph: Michael Moser

Europe is growing closer together. This short sentence describes not only the progress of European integration, especially since current disruptions such as “Brexit” or re-nationalisation trends in some Member States might suggest otherwise. It describes the growing mutual interest of individuals, peoples and countries throughout Europe. Thus, the motto “United in Diversity”, which the European Union has adopted, also applies beyond it.

The same is true for national legal systems and cultures. This is reflected in the daily work of national supreme courts where, in examining individual cases, the focus goes beyond domestic law and even beyond EU law. Regarding concrete problems, more and more research is done to determine how those are approached and regulated in the national legal systems of other European partner countries and which are the similarities and differences as well as the reasons for these. It is, therefore, also within the framework of their judicial activity that national legal cultures are engaged in a dialogue.

ACA-Europe has fostered this dialogue from the very beginning through comparative law studies, seminars and conferences as well as through the exchange of judges between member courts. The German presidency has set itself the goal of contributing to the promotion and enhancement of mutual knowledge. Accordingly, two seminars will be held for the member courts to discuss how and under what conditions they function. Two further seminars will focus on examining and comparing the basic structures of the domestic administrative law of each country. Finally, with regard to the ACA-Europe database “JuriFast”, a repository of decisions of the member courts concerning matters of EU law, the aim is to modernise it and improve its usability with regard to similar databases.

The next ACA-Europe seminar will be held in Cologne and will focus on comparative administrative law. On the basis of the project of the Research Network on EU Administrative Law (ReNEUAL), which, following an initiative of the European Parliament, was first developed in academia, the seminar will allow for a comparative study of how the different national legal systems in Europe deal with the fundamental problems that arise throughout the administrative procedure, from the submission of the application to the adoption of the administrative decision, including the participation of third parties and other authorities. The seminar is prepared using a detailed questionnaire that also includes a case study. The results of this questionnaire will help define the main themes of the seminar.

The seminar will be held at the Administrative Court of Cologne – one of the largest of the 51 lower administrative courts in Germany. It is by design that we selected this location. Thus, the participants will be able to explore not only the historic cathedral city on the Rhine but also a major hub of administrative justice in Germany. The representatives of the Councils of State and supreme administrative jurisdictions of the European Union are therefore invited to participate in the seminar which will take place in Cologne from 2 to 4 December 2018.

Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Klaus Rennert
President of ACA-Europe,
President of the Federal Administrative Court of Germany


On Monday 14 May 2018, the biennial ACA colloquium was held in The Hague. ACA members discussed developments on the theme of technology and law. The summary report, that provides an overview of the main topics that were discussed, has been published on the ACA-Europe website.



From 18 to 19 October 2018, the ACA seminar on due process was held in Tallinn. ACA-Europe has received 30 national reports: 29 reports from ACA members and a report from the Court of Justice of the European Union. All national reports, as well as the general report, have been published on the ACA-Europe website. Read more....


These decisions have been selected for you:


The case concerns a professional football player agent who receives commissions from the football clubs that host the players he offers them. The question of the taxation of this service arose in the Court, which referred a preliminary question to the Court of Justice.

Czech Republic

In this judgment, the Czech Supreme Administrative Court considered that it was up to the administration to assess the systemic flaws of the asylum procedure in the responsible Member State and to assess the individual risks of transfer to that Member State.


This case concerns the protection of personal data. The erasure of data on the internet relating to health and the right to be forgotten were solicited by a person convicted of murder. A balance of interests has been struck between the protection of privacy and freedom of expression.


Here is an interesting summary of the "saga", started in 2016, relating to the public call for tenders for the allocation of Greek television licenses. The text provides an update on the legal and political framework of the issue and the various decisions taken in this case.

Remember, the Jurifast RSS feed can be obtained at the following address: (possibility to subscribe to an RSS feed).


The forum of ACA-Europe presently has 202 members from 34 institutions.

Since the last e-news, 4 new collective questions have been asked and 11 countries actively participated by providing 26 responses: Austria, Belgium, Estonia, France, Germany, Latvia, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal and Slovenia.

The following subjects have been discussed:

  • Return decision and asylum residence permit (5 responses)
  • Compatibility of direct deposit clauses with Dir 2014/17/UE (8 responses)
  • Family reunification: parents of adult refugees (5 responses)
  • GDPR - RGPD - article 36.4 - interpretation (8 responses)

Access to the forum is reserved for the members of ACA-Europe, who can register for it at the following address:

Tour of Europe

The Tour of Europe provides an analysis, in 76 points, on how the administrative justice system is organised in the different Member States of the European Union and Turkey.

In 2018, so far, updates have been provided for Belgium and Latvia. These texts can be found on the association’s website, both in French and English. Also, an update of the English version has been provided for Cyprus.

In order to obtain the objectives, defined in the specific agreement between ACA-Europe and the European Commission, within the scope of the subvention granted by the European Union, members which have not updated the available information since 2009 are warmly invited to do so by contacting the ACA-Europe team at the following email address:

Subsequent changes to the updated versions are also welcome.

Judge Exchange

In 2018, ACA-Europe had the opportunity to allow 18 judges from its member institutions to complete a 12-day working visit with one of them. These internships end with a report written in French or in English that will be posted on the website of the association.

As of 2019, a new project manager will be responsible for the judge exchange programme. More information will follow soon.

Contact address:

Members' News

The Netherlands – Council of State – November 2018

Thomas C. de Graaf

© Hans Kouwenhoven

Mr. Thomas C. de Graaf has been appointed vice-president of the Council of State by the Dutch Cabinet. De Graaf will succeed Piet Hein Donner on 1 November 2018, who will retire on the same day.

Since 2011, Mr. De Graaf was a senator for the fraction of D66 in the Dutch Senate. From June 2015 until June 2018, he was leader of the fraction. Previously, he has been minister and group leader in the Lower House, and has also been mayor in Nijmegen.

As a minister, he was occupied with, among other things, political reform and quality of the Government Service.

As of 1 November 2018, Mr. de Graaf will also act as vice-President of ACA-Europe.

Greece – Council of State – October 2018

Aikaterini Sakellaropoulou

On 16 October 2018, the Council of Ministers of Greece appointed Vice-President Aikaterini Sakellaropoulou as the new President of the Council of State.

Ms. Sakellaropoulou, who is the first woman to hold the post, was born in Thessaloniki and studied law at the Faculty of Law at the University of Athens. She was appointed auditor, after competition, in 1982. She was promoted to Master of Petitions in 1988, State Counselor in 2000 and Vice-President in 2015. During her study leave (1989-1990), she attended public law courses in Paris II University. She taught environmental law for several years at the National School of Magistracy.

According to art. 90 of the Greek Constitution, her term as President will be four years.

Czech Republic – Supreme Administrative Court – October 2018

Michal Mazanec

The mandate of Mr. Josef Baxa as President of the Supreme Administrative Court of the Czech Republic has ended. As from 1 October 2018, the office of President of the Supreme Administrative Court is taken up by Mr. Michal Mazanec.

Michal Mazanec completed a law degree at the Faculty of Law, Charles University, Prague. Before being appointed as a judge, he had served as a prosecutor at the non-criminal section of general and civil-court supervision. In 1990, he became head of the legal and legislative division of the Ministry of Culture of the Czech Republic. In 1992, he was appointed as judge of the Supreme Court in administrative matters, from 1993 he was as a judge of the High Court in Prague. In that year he also set up the then sole Czech Court Reports in administrative justice matters (otherwise known as the “Red Reports”). In the years 1990- 1998, he was a member of the Commission for Administrative Law of the Government Legislative Council, and he was a member of the Government Legislative Council until 2002. In co-operation with Justice Marie Žišková and other judges of the Supreme Administrative Court he prepared institutional, jurisdictional and procedural provisions within the reform of administrative justice, including the draft Code of Administrative Justice and legislation relating thereto in the years 2000-2001. He was appointed as Vice-President of the Supreme Administrative Court in 2003 and, subsequently, as President of this Court in October 2018.

Finland – Supreme Administrative Court – September 2018

Kari Kuusiniemi

Since 1 September 2018, Mr. Kari Kuusiniemi is the President of the Supreme Administrative Court of Finland. He succeeded President Pekka Vihervuori, who retired on the same day.

Mr. Kuusiniemi was born in 1960 and became a Doctor of Law at Helsinki University in 1992. He published some 20 books – partly joint publications – and more than 100 articles, several reports, case comments etc. in the field of Environmental and Administrative Law, mainly in Finnish.

He has been a justice in the Supreme Administrative Court since 2003. Up until his election, he was President of Chamber and Vice-President of the Court. Next to his office at the Supreme Administrative Court, Mr. Kuusiniemi is also lecturer at four Finnish universities and a member of, inter alia, the Board of the Finnish Association of European Law and the Academy of Science and Letters.

Read more

Italy – Council of State – September 2018

Patroni Griffi

Vice-president of ACA-Europe Filippo Patroni Griffi was appointed president of the Italian Council of State on 14 September 2018.

Mr. Patroni Griffi was born in Naples. He achieved a law degree magna cum laude in 1977 with a final dissertation in administrative law on State shareholding in enterprises. In 1986, he obtained the first position in the national examination for Judge at the Italian Council of State, where he has served both in the jurisdictional and advisory section.

Since 2009, Mr. Patroni Griffi had been President of Section of the Council of State of Italy and since 2016, Deputy President.

ACA News

Grant 2019

The budget for 2019 has been submitted by the General Secretariat. We are now waiting for approval by the European Commission.

ACA-Europe’s website updated with “Courts’ reports” section

The ACA-Europe website has been updated! The “annual reports” section has been renewed and renamed into “Courts’ reports”. This renewed section now offers links to the web pages where our members, observers or guest courts publish their annual reports, activity reports or any other similar document as the occasion arises.

We warmly invite you to visit this new web page!

Should you have any remarks, questions or suggestions concerning the new web page, please contact our content manager:

In this issue






Tour of Europe

Judge Exchange


Members' News

ACA News


2-4 December 2018


Seminar in Cologne, Germany – ReNEUAL I

25-26 March 2019


Seminar in Dublin, Ireland – Decision making

12-14 May 2019


General Assembly and seminar in Berlin, Germany

9 September 2019


Seminar in Brno, Czech Republic – Limits of judicial guarantee

For a complete overview of the calendar, see our website.

Analysis 2018-2019

On 24 October, an invitation was sent to the members to participate in the yearly transversal study. For 2018, the Board of the Association has opted to contribute to the “EU Justice Scoreboard” (“administrative justice” component), on the subject of “The quality of judgments”.

The study aims to explore what the supreme administrative courts consider to be the key determinants of a quality judgment, and how such determinants are followed/streamlined into the lower courts through the jurisprudence of the supreme courts.

The study is based on a questionnaire consisting of 114 questions about “form and style of the decision”, “reasoning of judgements”, “clarity of judgments”, “concise judgments”, “assessment of individual and global quality of judgments” and about “implementation in the lower courts”.

Deadline for participation is 30 November 2018. In the following months the results will be analysed by a working group and a report will be written. This report will be presented during the seminar in Berlin on 14 May 2019. At the same time, the study will be published on the website of ACA-Europe.

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