On 14 January 2014 the provisional relief judge of the district court of The Hague gave his verdict in summary proceedings against the European Patent Organization (‘EPO’), which had been initiated by the central Staff Union of the European Patent Organization (‘SUEPO’) and the local branch in The Hague (‘VEOB The Hague’). On the one hand, the object of the proceedings was the realization of the internationally recognized right of the unions to enter into collective bargaining with the EPO. Until then, the unions had been denied that right. On the other hand, the unions demanded the suspension of the new rules on strikes that had been introduced by the EPO as of 1 July 2013. Those rules significantly limited the internationally recognized right to strike. The EPO took the position that the provisional relief judge had no jurisdiction to consider the case because the organization enjoyed immunity from jurisdiction. However, the provisional relief judge rejected that defense.

The unions are represented by lawyers Liesbeth Zegveld, Christiaan Oberman (external) and Brechtje Vossenberg.

Read the press release here.

Annex (in Dutch)

  • Judgment of 14 January 2014 by the provisional relief judge
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Prakken d'Oliveira, formerly known as Böhler, is a law firm with expertise and experience in asylum and immigration law, European law, administrative law, international criminal law and human rights. Our lawyers provide advice and conduct procedures before the Dutch Immigration and Naturalization Service (IND), the Dutch Review Committee on the Intelligence and Security Services (CTIVD), the District- and Appeals courts, the Administrative Law Division of the Dutch Council of State, the Supreme Court of the Netherlands, the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), the Court of Justice of the European Union (ECJ), the Human Rights Treaty Bodies of the United Nations (UN), the International Criminal Court (ICC), and other international tribunals.