Friendly Settlements Before the European Court of Human Rights: Theory and Practice

ISBN : 9780199600977

Helen Keller; Magdalena Forowicz; Lorenz Engi
352 ページ
165 x 241 mm

The friendly settlement procedure is an important tool for the reduction of the European Court of Human Rights' (ECtHR) case load. Recent practice demonstrates that this procedure is increasingly resorted to by applicants and Contracting States. This book evaluates this largely unexplored instrument from doctrinal as well as practical perspectives, making recommendations to render the negotiations before the ECtHR more efficient and professional. The book examines questions relating to the admissibility as well as to the practical manageability of friendly settlements. In contrast to ordinary civil proceedings, the friendly settlements procedure has a mixed legal character: while settlements are an inter-partes procedure, they are also binding under international law, as the ECtHR often hands them down in the form of a judgment. In this context, the question arises as to how far the proceedings can be 'privatised' and where the limits to the monetisation of human rights violation lie. This book evaluates possible abuses and identifies the precautions that need to be taken in the framework of friendly settlements. This issue is linked to the question of whether the legal framework which governs the conclusion of a friendly settlement should be formulated in a more concrete manner, given that the position of the parties is unequal and that the role of the Court is hardly defined in this context. Furthermore, the book empirically examines whether the friendly settlement procedure is as advantageous in comparison to ordinary proceedings as others have argued. It also questions whether the friendly settlements procedure can provide the applicant with 'more money faster'.


1. Introduction
2. Legal Framework and Practice
3. Beyond Doctrine - The Strasbourg Realities
4. Philosophical Background
5. Analysis of the Court's Practice in Selected Areas
6. The Future of Friendly Settlements


Helen Keller is Professor of Public, European and International Law at the University of Zurich. She has spent six months at the Court researching friendly settlements and interviewing the relevant actors. Since 2008, she has been a member of the United Nations Human Rights Committee. Her publications concerning International, European and Swiss law have appeared in many journals.; Dr. Magdalena Forowicz was educated Canada, United Kingdom and Switzerland. She has taught and conducted research at Universities in Switzerland and the United Kindgom. She has also worked in West Africa on child rights reform and on World War II compensation at an International Organisation in Geneva. Dr Forowicz has published articles in international humanitarian and criminal law and a book entitled The Reception of International Law in the European Court of Human Rights. ; Dr Lorenz Engi has a PhD in law (University of Zurich, 2007) and a PhD in philosophy (University of Munich, 2010). He was a research assistant at the University of St. Gallen from 2004 to 2006 and the University of Constance from 2006 to 2008. He is currently a Post-doc Researcher at the University of Zurich.