ELI Adopts a New Project on Digitalisation of Civil Justice Systems in Europe


Developed in the context of ELI High Level Expert Group meetings on Digitalisation of Justice Systems, which took place on 13 and 29 April 2022 and were chaired by ELI First Vice-President, Lord John Thomas, this project was adopted by the ELI Council at its February 2023 meeting.

The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the use of digital communication. The need for digitalisation of justice is self-evident in an increasingly digitalised society. Advantages for justice include easier access to legal proceedings and relevant legal information for citizens and more efficient work processes for judges and lawyers. In the past decade governments have invested in digitalising justice, but the level of digitalisation differs from country to country and within the EU. There is significant room for improvement, but matching technology to legal needs, including protection of fundamental rights, is complex.

The primary purpose of this new ELI project is to provide an overarching framework to improve the use of digital technology in the judiciary. It will bundle dispersed knowledge and research, and facilitate digitalising civil justice systems while securing fundamental values of civil procedure.

The Project Team will develop set of principles, deriving fundamental rights from Article 6(1) ECHR and Article 47 of the EU Charter on Fundamental Rights, and largely based on the ELI-UNIDROIT Model European Rules of Civil Procedure and on existing studies of digitalisation of justice systems.

All interested ELI Members are invited to join its Members Consultative Committee by sending an email to the ELI Secretariat.