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European judicial training

Hand with judge's gavel © nicolasjoseschirado, fotolia

European judicial training is the training of legal practitioners in EU legislation and in the national law of another Member State. It is a key tool to ensure the coherent application of EU legislation across the European Union and smooth cross-border judicial proceedings, which cannot be reached without mutual trust between legal practitioners from all EU countries.

Training for judges and prosecutors is a priority; however, all legal practitioners, including court judicial staff, lawyers, solicitors, notaries, bailiffs and mediators, are targeted.


On 13 September 2011, the European Commission adopted the Communication "Building trust in EU-wide justice: a new dimension to European judicial training"pdf, the goal being to boost European judicial training to help build the European area of justice while increasing confidence between Member States, practitioners and citizens.

According to this Communication, the objective of the European Commission is to enable half of all legal practitioners in the European Union to participate in European judicial training activities by 2020 through the use of all available resources at local, national and European level.

Strong commitment is needed to ensure that judicial training reaches the level of excellence required for a true European judicial culture. Therefore it is essential that Member States, the judiciary, judicial schools and legal professions boost their training activities. As they are best placed to make sure that Union law is integrated in national training, action at European level will complement national activities.

European judicial training on the European e-Justice Portal

You want to knowmore about the European judicial training policy and its actors?

You are interested in ready-to-use training materials on various topics of EU law and in good training practices?

Then visit the European judicial training pages of the European e-Justice Portal.

State of play

The European Commission presents an annual report on European judicial training, following the Justice and Home Affairs Council conclusions of 27 and 28 October 2011 on the Commission's Communication. The most recent Report on European judicial training is available herepdf(2 MB) Choose translations of the previous link .

The results of this report show that the 2020 target – to train half of the legal practitioners on EU law – is realistic. However, considering the big differences among Member States and among the different legal professions in respect of the level of participation in training, further European judicial training is needed in some Member States more than in others, particularly for lawyers, court staff and bailiffs.

Financial support

Regarding financial support for European judicial training, the Commission makes it a priority of its Justice financial programme to facilitate training for more than 20 000 legal practitioners per year by 2020. These funds are accessible to support high-quality training projects with European impact.

The development of training activities is supported notably through grants. The criteria for awarding such grants rely on the development of practice oriented projects, which use active training methodologies, produce sustainable results and reach a large target audience.

More information about EU financial support may be found here: 

Furthermore, the European Commission is working to facilitate easier access to European funds for project promoters and to improve the coherence and stability of its calls for proposals.