Netherlands / Council of State, Administrative Jurisdiction Division / 201406767/1/A1 Authority on Road Traffic v defendant

Key facts of the case: 

The defendant had a car that was registered in his name. On 8 November 2012 the Authority on Road Traffic erased the registration at the request of the defendant, so that he would no longer be liable for any damage caused by his car or fines incurred from that moment onward. The defendant did not object to the date of this erasure. On 2 October 2013 the defendant asked the Authority on Road Traffic to erase the registration in his name retroactively as early as 7 October 2011, because he also did not want to be liable from 7 October 2011 until 8 November 2012. The defendant had received fines in connection with the car in this period, although the car was burnt and destroyed on 7 October 2011 (reason unknown, but there is a police record about this). The Road Traffic Authority refused to erase the registration on 7 October 2011, because of its prior decision to erase the registration on 8 November 2012. The District Court agrees without going into the matter, on the basis of Article 4.6 of the General Act on Administrative Law, which states that following a decision such as the oe in question, a party should raise new facts or circumstances if he or she wants the court to judge the case all over again. The defendant claims that there are new facts or circumstances, as he has received fines in connection with the car. He feels that the reliance by the District Court on Article 4.6 of the General Act on Admininistrative Law is, among other things , contrary to Article 47 of the Charter, because he does not get a right to an effective remedy and to a fair trial. The Court rejected the appeal without giving reasons, as there are no new facts or circumstances, according to the Court.

Outcome of the case:

The Court relied on the principle that it is not necessary to give a judgement in full in an appellate case such as the case in question when no new facts or circumstances have been raised, or, when the case is not of a very special nature. The Court further affirmed that this provision, laid down in the General Act on Administrative Law, is not in conflict with the Charter or European law in general.

Paragraphs referring to EU Charter: 

 

In sofar as [the appellant] argues that the Privacy Directive, Article 47 of the Charter and Articles 6 and 13 ECHR are in conflict with the application of Article 4:6 of the General Act on Administrative Law, this argument fails. As the Council of State has considered earlier on (judgement of 15 April 2015 in case no. 201406770/1/A1) the Privacy Directive and the standards imposed by the Court on the applicability of national rules of procedure in cases with a dimension related to the Union, are no in conflict with the application of Article 4:6 of the General Act on Administrative Law. These standards express the general duty of Member States to safeguard the rights relied on by the justitiables on the law of the Union in Legal proceedings, as also laid down in Article 47 of the Charter. According to the Explanatory Memorandum to the Charter (Official Journal 2007. C 303/02), which, according to Article 6, first subsection, third paragraph TEU and pursuant to Article 52, seventh subsection of the Charter , must be taken into account for its interpretation, Article 47 of the Charter has at least the same contents and scope as Articles 6 and 13 ECHR. Therefore these Articles are not in conflict with the application of Article 4:6 of the General Act on Administrative Law either. [The appellant], furthermore, has not convinced the State Council that there are special circumstances such as in the ECJ case of 13 January 2004, no. C-453/00, Kühne & Heitz N.V. on the basis of which the Road Traffic Authority would have the obligation to decide again on a decision against which there is no appeal, such as the decision of 8 November 2012, on the basis of substantive rights derived from Union Law. Therefore, there is no reason for a judgement implying that the District Court has used the above mentioned frame of reference without justification. 

Deciding body (original language): 
Afdeling Bestuursrechtspraak van de Raad van State
Language: 
Dutch