When can the European Ombudsman help me?


When can the European Ombudsman help me?

 
I have a doubt that an EU institution has violated my rights. How can I protect myself? Can I complain to the European Ombudsman? What is the procedure and how can I start it?
 
Firstly, who is the European Ombudsman?
The European Ombudsman is a person who runs an EU institution to monitor the rights of citizens by the EU authorities. It conducts its own investigations by signals or on its own initiative, exercising its functions with complete independence. This includes a ban on interference in its work by both the governments of the States and all other Union institutions. The European Ombudsman is elected by the European Parliament for a term of five years, and his mandate may be renewed but also terminated - in the event of a serious breach or default and if he does not fulfill the conditions necessary for the performance of his duties.
 
Who can complain to the European Ombudsman?
One of the additional rights I receive as a citizen of an EU country is the ability to complain to the European Ombudsman. In addition to all citizens of the Member States, all legal entities (companies, NGOs) based in the EU, as well as all people residing in the Union, can appeal to it.
 
Under what circumstances can I file such a complaint?
I have the right to refer to the European Ombudsman if I believe I am the victim of bad administrative practices by an institution, body, office or agency of the European Union, such as the European Central Bank and the European Commission. Examples of such violations include discrimination, lack or denial of information, unnecessary delay and misconduct by EU bodies.
 
Important! I have no right to turn to the European Ombudsman if I am dissatisfied with a decision of the Court of Justice of the European Union. The Ombudsman can not question judgments or participate as a member of the CEC.
 
What are his functions then?
The European Ombudsman considers my complaint and conducts an investigation. For this purpose, the Union institutions are required to provide the information requested. This includes, for example, giving explanations from the institution and its staff, sending verification documents, and drawing up various expertise.
 
Then, between the Ombudsman and the institution, cooperation begins in order to find a solution that simultaneously puts an end to the bad administration and satisfies me as a complainant. If such a solution is not reached, the Ombudsman prepares a report with recommendations to be forwarded to the institution concerned and to the European Parliament, and I am informed of the outcome of the investigation.
 
Important! If the European Ombudsman decides that the facts could give rise to criminal or disciplinary proceedings, he shall immediately notify the competent authorities.
 
The European Ombudsman also has the obligation to prepare and submit an annual report on the results of all investigations carried out during the year.
 
How can I file a complaint?
I can send a complaint to the European Ombudsman by post or online through the institution's website. It should clearly describe the problem, the available information and the identity, and I can ask for my complaint to remain confidential. It should be in one of the official languages ​​of the EU, including Bulgarian.
 
Important! My complaint must be filed within two years from the date I have learned the facts on which it is based. I must also have tried to resolve the issue directly with the institution concerned.
 
Important! The Ombudsman may decide that the appeal is inadmissible or outside his or her jurisdiction. In the latter case, he may advise me to address my complaint to another authority (for example, to the European Parliament).


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When can the European Ombudsman help me? When can the European Ombudsman help me?