AbstractsLaw & Legal Studies

From Final Judgment to Final Resolution : Effectiveness of the Execution of Judgments of the European Court of Human Rights in Finland

by Satu Heikkilä

Institution: University of Helsinki
Year: 2016
Keywords: oikeustieteellinen
Posted: 02/05/2017
Record ID: 2063787
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/160449


This study focuses on the execution of the judgments of the European Court of Human Rights (Court) in Finland and especially on its effectiveness. The Court has so far delivered 138 judgments against Finland in which one or more violations of the Convention articles were found. The aim of this thesis is to study how these judgments have been executed by the Finnish authorities. The study showed that in Finland the national execution procedure was not very bureaucratic and that it seemed to work well. Most of the procedural shortcomings identified at the European level did not exist in Finland, and the majority of the proposed new ideas for increasing the procedural effectiveness seemed to already be in use. The research revealed that the overall effectiveness of execution in Finland was therefore at a very advanced level compared to some other countries. However, in absolute terms, there still seemed to be room for some improvement, especially in the co-operation between the Committee of Ministers and the Finnish government. When looking at the payment of just satisfaction and the taking of individual measures, the study showed that their execution was fairly effective in Finland, except in a few exceptional cases. In general the domestic authorities acted quickly and effectively when executing the Court s judgments as far as the payment of just satisfaction and the taking of individual measures were concerned. In these respects the execution could be qualified as effective both in the temporal and in the material sense. However, as far as reopening was concerned, it appeared that the Supreme Court s interpretations did not always demonstrate the most effective attitude towards the execution of judgments. It could thus be deduced that there was occasionally some reluctance on the part of the Supreme Court to actively give full effect to the Convention and the Court s case-law, especially in the context of reopening. The study also revealed that although the taking of general measures in Finland was mostly sometimes even extremely effective, both in a temporal and a material sense, in some situations there were certain visible signs of reluctance to take execution measures. This manifested itself as a certain wait and see mentality, which was visible in particular in situations in which more proactive attitudes would have been required. However, most of the general measures were taken effectively in Finland. One of the best examples of the effectiveness of the Finnish execution of general measures was the execution of the ne bis in idem cases, in which the execution was done long before the first judgments against Finland were even rendered. On the other hand, the taking of general measures in the length of proceedings cases represented a group of cases in which the temporal and material effectiveness of the execution was at its lowest. Tämä tutkimus keskittyy Euroopan ihmisoikeustuomioistuimen (EIT) tuomioiden täytäntöönpanoon Suomessa ja etenkin sen tehokkuuteen. EIT on tähän mennessä antanut Suomea…