Protocol no. 15 to the European Convention on Human Rights has come into force on August 1, 2021. The development of Protocol no. 15 was led by the UK. It is an international legal agreement which makes a series of changes to the Convention.


Key takeaways from the Protocol are:

  • The Protocol No. 15 aim to address inefficiencies in the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR). The Protocol will contribute in helping the Court manage the high number of applications, which it receives from people claiming their rights under the Convention have been violated by a State Party.
  • The Protocol No. 15 acknowledges that each individual party is responsible for protecting human rights under the European Convention on Human Rights. It will also improve the efficiency of the ECtHR by shortening the time limit from six to four months for applications and ensuring that all applications have been properly considered by domestic courts.
  • The Protocol will modify rules regarding the appointment and retirement of judges of the Court, to enable them to serve for a full nine-year term and provide continuity. Currently, the upper age limit for ECtHR judges is the age of 70, with a requirement that candidates for the post of judge be less than 65 years of age at the date by which the list of candidates has been requested by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe.

*Tanvi Singh, Editorial Assistant has reported this brief.

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