The EEEI and its partners have just completed the Find an Expert project (end 2019). As a reminder, this project initiated at the request of e-justice (Council of the European Union), co-financed by the European Commission and the EEEI wil make it possible to put on-line on the e-justice website:
– the expertise procedures of the 27 EU Member States,
– to set up links to the national lists of experts of the countries, where they exist.
E-justice and the EEEI have decided to continue this work and this is the purpose and one of the objectives of the ERE project.
- The first objective is to make possible, thanks to the e-justice portal, to enable European judges, lawyers, experts and litigants to select a judicial expert and/or to get information by simply querying a search engine.
- The second objective is to have a single European reference system for experts which will enable them to access the dematerialized exchanges between European judicial systems.
- The third is directly induced by the first two, i.e. the implementation of a single nomenclature of the professions and skills of judicial experts in the European Union.
To set up this nomenclature, the idea is to work together, to create a reference group composed of about ten people, magistrates, experts and lawyers (if they wish), in charge of creating an initial nomenclature and making it evolve regularly.
To make a success of this project, each Member State will have to draw up a national list or a consolidation of regional lists, and/or lists by profession, if they are representative … Operators will also have to manage these lists.
The task is difficult because the management of lists of experts is very heterogeneous in the EU.
- Belgium: A national register of experts has been set up and is managed by the Ministry of Justice, but it is currently only accessible to magistrates.
- France: Lists of judicial experts are managed at the level of the Courts of Appeal, a national list of all the Courts is available (in pdf format) on the website of the Cour de Cassation.
- Italy: The lists of judicial experts are the responsibility of the Courts. At present there is no single national list of all these lists. Moreover, are these lists homogeneous?
- Netherlands: several associations manage an online register with qualified judicial experts which registers are frequently used by courts, lawyers and parties. For criminal cases the use of registered experts in court is mandatory.
- Baltic countries: for experts working in criminal matters, bodies dependent on the Ministries of Justice manage lists of experts. This project was co-financed by the EC.
- Romania: the judicial experts working in the criminal field are mainly civil servants.
Obviously the computer systems that manage these lists are very different.
The project will have to:
- define what needs to be done and the trajectory to get there;
- implement what has been decided.
In order to maintain this project, it will be necessary to define an “European reference” to manage this digital directory. The problem of financing arises. These two subjects must be addressed during the project, if possible fairly quickly.
For this project, the EEEI has decided:
- to join forces with EuroExpert, an association which is intended to represent all the experts at European level,
- to choose pilot countries, and therefore to find partners in these countries.
The EEEI and EuroExpert are betting here on success with a project involving a limited number of member countries, and then to extend the directory thus created to the other member states.
At the initiative of e-justice, it was decided to seek the possibility of mutualizing, at European level, IT tools with lawyers, notaries and/or bailiffs. It would also be possible to involve mediators.
This project is planned to last 2 years. It is currently being defined in order to be proposed to e-justice and the European Commission at the end of April 2020, but the current pandemic may modify this timetable.