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Digital Rights Ireland Data Retention Case

The High Court is seeking submissions from the parties to the Digital Rights Ireland case. See the Pleadings HERE.

The Court is seeking suggestions as to the form of questions to be submitted to the European Court of Justice. DRI has, in its Statement of Claim, suggested a form of question or questions to be submitted. Clearly, the High Court is not convinced that the form of question suggested by DRI is exactly right (or is seeking the assent of the State to DRI’s form of question). The hearing next Wednesday will show us which is the case.

DRI’s case is brought in its own name, but it is an action with implications for every citizen of Ireland, whether they know it or not.

For this reason McGarr Solicitors have published DRI’s pleadings on the Web since 2006. This is reasonable; the Respondents are, in effect and name, the State. The issues are public law issues and there can be no prevailing claim to privacy on those issues from these Respondents. It is worth noting that it is not common, to put it at its lowest, to see pleadings of current proceedings published but there is usually an exception to every rule and we have one here.

Between now and next Wednesday we will re-formulate the questions to go to the ECJ. These questions will form part of the Order of the Court making the reference to the ECJ. We currently estimate a two year wait to get a hearing in the ECJ. Delay is inevitable; every Member State of the EU has a right to intervene and be heard in the matter. That implies that every Member State must receive a copy of the Questions and the parties’ submissions.