Training of Justice Professionals in 2021
On 22 December 2022, the Commission published the eleventh report on training on EU law for justice professionals (in particular, judges, prosecutors, lawyers, court/prosecutors’ offices staff, notaries and bailiffs, and more generally prison and probation staff). The figures of the report refer to the year 2021. It provides an overview of the participation of legal professionals in initial and continuing training in EU law, including information on the training of young justice professionals, the variety of training activities and the quality of judicial training. The report also serves to monitor the objectives of the European Judicial Training Strategy 2021-2024 adopted by the Commission in December 2020 (→ eucrim 4/2020, 264).
In 2021, more than 240,000 justice professionals received training in EU law or the law of another Member States. This is a considerable increase (approximately 30%) compared with the years before the pandemic (for the 2019 report → eucrim 4/2020, 263-264). Other main results of the report include the following:
- The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on judicial training: while there is an upward trend for lawyers, court/prosecutors’ offices staff and notaries, notably due to an increase in online training, other professions (in particular judges) have not reached the level of pre-pandemic years;
- No profession reached the new quantitative target for annual continuing training as set in the European Training Strategy 2021-2024;
- The EU (co-)funded training for more than 36,000 participants, i.e. 15% of all justice professionals who received training on EU law in 2021.
As found in past annual reports, considerable differences remain in the level of training participation across Member States and across the various justice professions. At the same time, the need for dedicated training increases, in particular due to new challenges for justice professionals and justice systems. According to the Commission, this confirms that more needs to be done and that ambitious, targeted training activities are needed for most legal professionals. The Commission stressed that the implementation of the 2021-2024 Training Strategy will remain the key priority in the next years. In this context, it will make further efforts in the digitalisation of justice systems, such as the further development of the European Training Platform (→ eucrim 4/2020, 272).