Record Number of Legal Practitioner Trainings in 2017
19 April 2019
2018-Max_Planck_Herr_Wahl_1355_black white_Zuschnitt.jpg Thomas Wahl

In 2017, over 180,000 legal practitioners (judges, prosecutors, court staff, lawyers, bailiffs, and notaries) took part in training activities on EU law or the law of another Member State. With this record number since reporting on European judicial training began in 2011, the EU already reached its goal of enabling half of all legal practitioners in the EU (approx. 800,000) to attend training by 2020: the target set in the 2011 European Judicial Training Strategy was achieved two years ahead of schedule.

This main result of the European Commission’s report on training for EU legal practitioners in 2017was published at the end of December 2018.

According to the report, the 2017 figures show an upward trend in the number of practitioners trained in EU law. The participation rate varies, however, across the different legal professions and Member States. Whereas the degree of training remains stable for judges and prosecutors, there is more fluctuation for court staff, lawyers, and notaries. The report contains detailed breakdowns on training participation by profession, length of training, training topics, and quality indicators.

The absolute number of professionals trained increased for all professions (except bailiffs). Judges and prosecutors received far more training on EU law or the national law of another Member State than members of the other professions.

In most Member States that delivered data, the total number of lawyers trained had increased. The report states, however, that the situation of lawyer trainings remains largely unsatisfactory.

It should be noted that the figures are meaningful to a limited extent only, since data are not or not fully provided by all Member States. Data on private providers of training for lawyers are also lacking.

The report concludes that there is still room for improvement. This year, the Commission plans to present a robust evaluation of the 2011 strategy and make recommendations for the future. For the debate on rehaul of the training strategy, see also eucrim 1/2018, pp. 4-5.

All reports on European judicial training can be accessed via the EU’s e-justice portal.