How to apply to the European Court of Human Rights

How to make a valid application

If you decide to apply to the Court, please ensure that your application complies with Rule 47 of the Rules of Court, which sets out the information and documents that must be provided.

Failure to provide any of the information or documents required by Rule 47 §§ 1 and 2 will result in the complaints not being examined by the Court. It is imperative that all fields in the application form are filled in.

Rule 47 – Contents of an individual application

Institution of Proceedings – (Practice Directions – Rules of the European Court of Human Rights)

A valid application will be examined by the Court; this does not mean that the application will be declared admissible.

How to lodge an application

The application form should be downloaded, completed, printed out and sent by post to the Court with the necessary documents. No other form must be used.

Application Form Download

The form will work correctly only with Adobe Reader 9 upwards and is only supported under the Windows and Mac OS X operating systems. Please ensure you have Adobe Reader installed on your computer (download available from www.adobe.com).

1. Save a copy of the form

  • Right-click on the link or icon above
  • According to your browser, choose one of available options “Save target as”, “Save Link As” or “Download Linked File As…”
  • Save the form on your computer in a chosen location.

2. Fill in the form

  • Open the saved copy of the form in Adobe Reader from the chosen location
  • Fill in the form and save it.
  • Once you have completed the form, you should print it, sign it and post it to the Court.

How to complete the application form

If your application is incomplete the Court will not examine it, so it is essential that you meticulously fill in every part of the application form.

Notes for filling in the application form

Common Mistakes in Filling in the Application Form and How to Avoid Them

Sending applications

Applications to the Court must be sent by post to the following address:

The Registrar
European Court of Human Rights
Council of Europe
F-67075 Strasbourg cedex

Please note that sending an application by fax does not interrupt the six-month time-limit.

Grouped applications

Where there are more than 5 applicants, the representative should provide, in addition to theapplication forms and documents, a table setting out the required identifying details for each applicant.

Addendum for multiple applicants

Authority form

When to use the authority form

This authority form should only be used if the applicant did not have a representative at the time of filling in the application form or if the applicant wishes to change the representative named in an application form already submitted to the Court.

How to download the authority form

Authority Form

The form will work correctly only with Adobe Reader 9 upwards and are only supported under the Windows and Mac OS X operating systems. Please ensure you have Adobe Reader installed on your computer (download available from www.adobe.com).

1. Save a copy of the form

  • Right-click on the link or icon above
  • According to your browser, choose one of available options “Save target as”, “Save Link As” or “Download Linked File As…”
  • Save the form on your computer in a chosen location.

2. Fill in the form

  • Open the saved copy of the form in Adobe Reader from the chosen location
  • Fill in the form and save it.
  • Once you have completed the form, you should print it, sign it and post it to the Court.

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