Geographical area

Adoption of the new EU Directive on procedural safeguards for children in criminal proceedings



The main novelty of the directive has to do with the role of lawyers in relation to suspected or accused children. Member States shall ensure that children are assisted by a lawyer where necessary, by providing legal aid, unless assistance by a lawyer is not proportionate in light of the circumstances of the case. Other important conditions outlined by the directive concern the provision of information on rights, and the rights to an individual assessment, to a medical examination and to audio-visual recording of questioning. It also provides special safeguards for children deprived of their liberty, in particular during pre- and post-trial detention.

Member States now have three years to ensure that the directive is correctly transposed into their national legislations. Denmark, the UK and Ireland have opted out of this directive and will not be bound by it.

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  • Geographical area: International