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Cases dealt with by CJEU up despite COVID
Judges sit in judgment in the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Justice, Luxembourg

02 Mar 2022 / cjeu Print

Cases dealt with by CJEU up despite COVID

Figures released by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) show that the number of cases brought before its two courts increased last year, having fallen in 2020.

The EU’s top court said that it had maintained its judicial activity “at a very high level”, despite the persistence of COVID-19 restrictions.

The number of cases brought before the Court of Justice and the General Court rose by 8.6% to 1,720 last year, while the number of cases completed was up 12% to 1,723.

As a result, the number of cases pending remained stable, at just over 2,500.

More appeals lodged

In the General Court, the increase in the number of cases completed was bigger than the rise in the number of cases brought. This led to a lower number of cases pending.

The increase in activity in the General Court had a knock-on effect on the higher court, which saw a marked increase in the number of appeals lodged.

National courts of EU member states made 567 requests for preliminary rulings from the Court of Justice last year – up from 556 in 2020.

‘Constant vigilance’

The highest number of requests (106) came from Germany, while there were 11 such requests from the Irish courts.

The CJEU said that the decisions handed down during the year reflected “contemporary concerns and challenges” – including the rule of law, the environment, the protection of personal data, and the fight against violence against women.

“At a time when it is possible to observe a widespread tendency to challenge the authority of judicial decisions – and even in certain member states a more fundamental calling into question of the project of European integration, and the founding values and principles of that project – the legitimacy of the decisions handed down by the institution lies above all in a constant vigilance as regards the quality and persuasiveness of those decisions,” stated Koen Lenaerts (President of the Court of Justice).

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