Areas of Practice

Fundamental Rights

European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (ECHR)

The ECHR is an international treaty under which the Council of Europe Member States guarantee fundamental, civil and political rights, not only to their own citizens, but also to any natural or legal person under their jurisdiction. It was signed on November 4, 1950, in Rome, and entered into force in 1953.

In particular, the ECHR guarantees the right to life, the right to fair trial, the right to respect for private and family life, freedom of expression, freedom of thought, conscience and religion, and the right to protection of property.

Established in 1959, the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) is an international court with jurisdiction to rule on complaints concerning infringement of civil and political rights enshrined in the ECHR. The ECHR is based in Strasbourg.

Filing a complaint with the ECHR is an important tool available to citizens, to ensure respect for their fundamental rights. However, examining the alleged infringement depends on the fulfilment of admissibility requirements, and the procedure involves several stages, including the possibility of amicable agreement between the parties, promoted by the ECHR. Given these specificities, being properly represented by a lawyer appears to be decisive.

Portugal joined the ECHR in 1978.

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