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On this page you can find definitions to all the rights which are listed in the tool. The rights are grouped by different areas which you can access using the links below or use the search box to search for a specific term.

General rights areas
Term Description
Asylum and immigration rights

This is for when you are prevented from seeking asylum or if you are being removed, expelled or extradited to a country where there is a serious risk that you could be subjected to the death penalty, torture or other inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

Consumer rights

This is for when you face unfair treatment buying a product or service (including shopping online), or when what you bought was substandard. It also covers issues such as unfair terms in contracts or if you were misled by advertising or if your holiday package operator went bankrupt.

Environmental rights

This is for when the environment where you live is not being properly preserved or protected. It also covers you if you suffer from pollution, such as poor air quality or toxic chemicals.

Non-discrimination rights

This is for when you are treated differently on the basis of your gender, race or ethnic origin, age, disability, sexual orientation (for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual or intersexual people), religion and belief, or other grounds in areas such as education, employment, social security, healthcare, access to goods and services or housing. This also applies if you are a victim of hate crime - an offence motivated by racism, xenophobia, religious intolerance, or by your actual or perceived disability, sexual orientation or gender identity.

Property rights

This is for when you are prevented from enjoying your property including land, flats, cars etc. This also applies if you, as an author or inventor, wish to protect your own creation and profit from it. This can relate to works covered by copyright as well as patents, trademarks, and original business methods and industrial processes. 

Right to access courts and other bodies in order to obtain redress, such as a binding decision or a financial compensation

This is for when you are unable to seek justice, when your hearing is unfair or wrongly conducted in private, the court is not independent, the length of proceedings is unreasonable or if you do not receive legal aid or legal representation. It also applies if you are treated as guilty before guilt was proven by a court, if you are held guilty of an act which is not a criminal offence, the penalty is too severe or you are being punished twice in criminal proceedings for the same act.

Rights in the area of social security and assistance, education, housing and health-care

This is for when you are prevented from accessing social security entitlements and social assistance, primarily during maternity, illness, accident, loss of employment or age. It covers your rights to access basic medical care and treatment, and to social and housing assistance including financial support. It also covers problems with access to compulsory education as well as to higher and further education, including university and vocational training or lack of respect by educational facilities for parents' religious, philosophical and pedagogical convictions. It also applies to problems with access to general services such as postal services, telecommunications or transport.

Rights of specific vulnerable groups: persons with disabilities, children and the elderly

This is for when you are prevented from accessing social benefits (such as disability pension) or when your participation in social, cultural and political life is endangered because you are a child, an elderly person or you are not protected specifically as any of the following groups: a child, an elderly person or a person with a disability.

Rights related to good public administration

This is for when you wish to raise an issue about maladministration, such as when your affairs are not handled impartially, fairly or within a reasonable time by a government office, local authority or any other public institution.

Rights related to the freedom of thought, expression and religion

This is for when your freedom to have an opinion, and to receive and transmit information and ideas, including online, is restricted. This also covers activities such as freely creating, performing, distributing or exhibiting works of art.

Rights related to the freedom to move within the EU

This is for when you are prevented from freely moving or residing within the European Union, to, work, study, start up a business, or accompany a family member, for example.

Rights related to the protection of personal data

This is about the collection of, the access to, and use of your personal data (everything that identifies you, such as your name, telephone numbers, date of birth or photographs) by others (other individuals, companies, public authorities, government, agency or any other body), including online. This also covers unwanted direct marketing calls or mails.

Rights related to the protection of private and family life

This is for when your private life or family is interfered with. This includes your personal identity (e.g. choice of name, mode of dress, sexual identity), medical treatment (negligent or without consent), stalking (including cyberstalking), unjustified body searches or fingerprinting by the police, relationships between parents and children, relationship between you and your partner (including same-sex partnership), adoption, etc. This also includes situations where you are dismissed for a reason connected with maternity and the right to paid maternity and parental leave.

Rights related to the protection of the physical and mental integrity of a person

This is for when you are mistreated, detained unfairly, tortured, or are a victim of inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, slavery or forced labour, or human trafficking. It can also apply to cases where a relative, for example, has been killed.

Social and political participation rights

This is for when you are prevented from assembling peacefully, from forming a political party or from joining trade unions or any other association. This also applies if your right to vote or stand as a candidate in an election is being restricted. If diplomatic or consular protection is denied to you by your national authorities, then this too is covered.

Workers' rights and rights related to the protection of self-employment and business activities

This is for when you are prevented from freely choosing a job, from working, or from freely setting up and conducting a business. It also covers your rights as a worker to information and consultation at work, the right to collective bargaining and action, protection against unjustified dismissal as well as fair and just working conditions. It also covers lack of protection of young people at work and child labour. 

Non-discrimination rights
Term Description
Discrimination/unfair treatment in the area of education

You should not be treated unfairly or differently in education because of your race, age, sexual orientation, etc.

Discrimination/unfair treatment in the area of employment

You should not be treated unfairly or differently at work because of your race, age, sexual orientation, etc.

Discrimination/unfair treatment in the area of goods and services

You should not be treated unfairly or differently when trying to access goods and services because of your race, age, sexual orientation, etc.

Discrimination/unfair treatment in the area of housing

You should not be treated unfairly or differently when trying to find somewhere to live or being at home because of your race, age, sexual orientation, etc.

Discrimination/unfair treatment in the area of social protection

You should not be treated unfairly or differently when receiving social benefits because of your race, age, sexual orientation, etc.

Multiple discrimination - discrimination on more than one grounds

You should not be treated unfairly or differently because of a combination of different factors such as your race, age, sexual orientation, etc.

Respect for cultural, religious and linguistic diversity

This right safeguards cultural, linguistic and religious diversity and enables you to participate in and contribute to this diversity.

Social and political participation rights
Term Description
Freedom of assembly and of association

You have the freedom to gather publicly or privately and associate with others for any purpose, as long as the purpose is lawful.

Right to diplomatic and consular protection

You have the right to receive protection from your embassy or consulate.

Right to vote and to stand as a candidate at elections

You have the right to participate in any election you are entitled to and stand as a candidate.

Rights in the area of social security and assistance, education, housing and health-care
Term Description
Access to services of global economic interest

You have the right to access general services such as energy, transportation or water services.

Health care

You have the right to access healthcare systems. 

Right to education

You have the right to access educational systems.

Social security and social assistance

You have the right to access to social security systems (including pension, work-related accident protection and different unemployment benefits) as well as other social assistance programmes.

Right to access courts and other bodies in order to obtain redress, such as a binding decision or a financial compensation
Term Description
Presumption of innocence and right of defence

You have the right to be treated as innocent until guilt has been proven; you also have the right to be defended when being accused of a crime. 

Principles of legality and proportionality of criminal offences and penalties

You have the right to be protected from being punished for a crime that is not prescribed by law. Penalties should also be proportional to the crime committed.

Right not to be tried or punished twice in criminal proceedings for the same criminal offence

You have the right to be protected from being brought before a court and punished for the same crime more than once for a single criminal act.

Right to an effective remedy and to a fair trial

You have the right to access courts or use other ways of claiming your rights. The fact that a court exists is not enough; it has to be used to deliver decisions that make a difference on the situation which is the object of the proceedings. Courts also have to be fair - treating you and others equally, and act according to set rules.

Asylum and immigration rights
Term Description
Protection in the event of removal, expulsion or extradition

You have the right to be protected from unlawful removal, expulsion or extradition from the country in which you are residing.

Right to asylum

You have the right to claim asylum in any European Union country.

Rights of specific vulnerable groups: persons with disabilities, children and the elderly
Term Description
Children rights

As a child you have the right to protection and care as is necessary for your wellbeing. You also have the right to have your opinions listened to and be taken into consideration. 

Person with disabilities

You have the right to be protected from having your mental or physical condition affect the full enjoyment of your other rights.

Rights of the elderly

As an elderly person you have the right to lead a life of dignity and independence, and to participate in social and cultural life.

Discrimination grounds
Term Description
Age

This protects you from being treated differently because of your age.

Disability

This protects you from being treated differently because of any type of disability.

Gender

This protects you from being treated differently because of your gender, for example if you are not promoted because you are a woman or a man.

Other grounds

This protects you from being treated differently on the basis of other grounds than those listed above, such as political affiliation, physical appearance, etc.

Race and ethnic origin

This protects you from being treated differently because of your ethnic or racial background.

Religion and belief

This protects you from being treated differently because of your religious, atheist or agnostic beliefs.

Sexual Orientation

This protects you from being treated differently because you are, for example, attracted to the same sex or gender or both sexes.

Discrimination areas
Term Description
Education

This protects you from being treated differently when, for example, accessing education.

Employment

This protects you from being treated differently when, for example, accessing employment or in relation to conditions of employment.

Goods and services

This protects you from being treated differently when buying products or using different services.

Housing

This protects you from being treated differently when, for example, trying to rent or buy accommodation.

Other areas

This protects you from being treated differently in relation to other matters than those listed above, such as in relation to healthcare, media, sports, science, political parties, civil society organisations, etc.

Social Protection

This protects you from being treated differently when, for example, trying to access different social protection schemes in case of sickness, invalidity, old age, unemployment, etc.