Lodging an application with the European Court of Human Rights

You can lodge an application with the European Court of Human Rights if you believe that your rights from the European Convention on Human Rights have been infringed

The European Court of Human Rights is an international court which can only consider applications of natural persons, organisations or companies which believe that their rights from the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms have been infringed.

Criteria for lodging an application

An application can be lodged exclusively against the states who are signatories of the Convention.

The ECHR cannot consider all types of complaints. Its jurisdiction is limited by the admissibility criteria stated in the Convention, which define who may apply, when and in relation to what. THE ECHR rejects around 90% of the applications it considers as inadmissible. For this reason, you need to check whether your complaints meet the admissibility criteria.

To find out about these criteria, as well as how to lodge an application, you can contact an attorney at law or peruse the instructions on filling out the application form.

Lodging an application

You can lodge an application with the ECHR only by regular post (not via telephone). This means that you need to send a paper copy of the application form with the applicant's and/or authorised representative’s original signatures. Receipt of the application form via fax is not considered to be a full application because the ECHR needs to receive the original copy of the signed application form.

Send the application form to the following address:
The Registrar
European Court of Human Rights
Council of Europe
67075 Strasbourg Cedex

Your case will be considered free of charge. You will be immediately notified of any decision the ECHR takes in relation to your case.

As of June 2017, the ECHR has changed the rules of procedure in the procedure before a single judge with respect to reasoning in decisions on inadmissibility

ECHRS’s new rules of procedure in single-judge procedures.