+86 21 658 939 33 support@translegal.com.cn

After lengthy negotiations and several referendums, the Treaty of Lisbon was finally ratified by all 27 Member States of the European Union in November 2009, and entered into force on 1 December 2009. The Treaty modifies the organisation of the court and adds to its jurisdictional scope.
The European Community has been replaced by the European Union, which now has legal personality, and the three-pillar structure of the Maastricht Treaty has been abolished. The court is now known as the Court of Justice of the European Union and it has three branches: the Court of Justice, the General Court and the Civil Service Tribunal.
The Civil Service Tribunal has taken over much of the jurisdiction of the former Court of First Instance and will consequently entertain cases regarding labor relations and social security between the EU and its civil servants, as well as disputes between certain EU bodies.
The General Court has jurisdiction to hear, inter alia, actions brought by natural or legal persons against acts or omissions of the institutions, bodies, offices or agencies of the EU, actions brought by the Member States against the Commission, actions seeking compensation for damage caused by EU institutions, actions relating to Community trade marks, and appeals from the decisions of the Civil Service Tribunal.
The Court of Justice will continue to make preliminary rulings and take appeals from the General Court. It also acquires broad new jurisdictional powers. It will give preliminary rulings in the area of freedom, security and justice as a result of the disappearance of the pillars. It will make binding decisions on police and judicial cooperation in criminal matters, and review acts of the European Council. The Court of Justice will also judge issues arising from the Charter of Fundamental Rights which sets out basic human rights for all Member States’ citizens. It will take five years for the increased jurisdictional scope to be fully implemented.
Judges will continue to be appointed by common accord of the governments of Member States but, from now on, the judicial candidates will be subject to a 7-person review panel made up of former members of the Court, members of national supreme courts, and lawyers of recognized competence. Additionally, the number of Advocates General (court advisors who issue public, non-binding legal opinions) will increase from 8 to 11, with Poland getting its own permanent advocate, in addition to Germany, France, the UK, Italy and Spain.
The changes are intended to make it easier for individuals to bring cases. Moreover, any court in a Member State may now seek a preliminary ruling, not just the highest court.