KHO - KHO: 2021: 125

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Revision as of 11:52, 13 October 2021 by MB (talk | contribs) (→‎Facts)
KHO - KHO: 2021: 125
Courts logo1.png
Court: KHO (Finland)
Jurisdiction: Finland
Relevant Law: Article 51 GDPR
Article 52 GDPR
Article 53 GDPR
Article 54(1) GDPR
[ Article 47 CFR]
[ Article 19(1) TFEU]
Decided: 22.09.2021
Published:
Parties:
National Case Number/Name: KHO: 2021: 125
European Case Law Identifier:
Appeal from:
Appeal to:
Original Language(s): Finnish
Original Source: KHO (in Finnish)
Initial Contributor: Florence D'Ath

The Finnish Supreme Administrative Court annulled the decision to end the mandate of the head of the Finnish DPA because it did not comply with Article 54(1)(d) GDPR, according to which the duration of the term of any DPA member can be no less than four years.

English Summary

Facts

The provincial government of Åland had appointed Mr A as head of the Finnish Data Protection Authority (Datainspektionen) for a probationary period of one year.

Pursuant to section 10(2) of the Provincial Government's Administration and Development Act, the Provincial Government of Åland stated that they would not propose the appointment of A to a permanent post and that A's term of office would therefore automatically come to and end after the one-year probationary period.

At the end of the probationary period, the Government of Åland issued a notice confirming that Mr A's term of office had ended. Mr A however applied to the Supreme Administrative Court for the annulment of this decision, which he considered contrary to data protection law.

Holding

The Supreme Administrative Court considered that the notice issued by the Government of Åland constituted an administrative decision terminating Mr A's mandate.

The Supreme Administrative Court found that, in addition to national legislation, A's role as head of the data protection authority is also regulated by EU law, and in particular by the GDPR.

Although the GDPR does not contain explicit provisions regarding probationary period, the minimum length of the term of any member of any data protection authority is "no less than four years", as set in Article 54(1)(d) GDPR. As a consequence, the termination of A's mandate at the end of the probationary period could not be considered in line with the GDPR

The Supreme Administrative Court further noted that leaving Mr A without any possibility of appeal against that decision would be contrary to the right to a fair trial as protected under the Finnish Constitution, Article 19 TFEU and Article 47 CFR.

As Mr A's mandate and termination had not been assessed in the light of the provisions of the GDPR, the Supreme Administrative Court concluded that the decision to terminate Mr A's mandate had to be annulled and the matter referred back to the provincial government for reconsideration.

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English Machine Translation of the Decision

The decision below is a machine translation of the Finnish original. Please refer to the Finnish original for more details.


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 provincial government had taken the A's employ knowledge Supervisory Authority (Datainspektionen) post of Head of a year-long probation. Pursuant to Section 10 (2) of the Provincial Government's Administration and Development Act, the Provincial Civil Service Act (tjänstemannalagen för landskapet Åland) stated that he would not propose the appointment of A to a permanent post and that A's term of office would end at the end of his probationary period. A applied to the Supreme Administrative Court for the annulment of the decision to terminate the employment. The Supreme Administrative Court considered this notice to constitute an administrative decision terminating Mr A's employment, annulled the decision and referred the matter back to the Provincial Government for reconsideration, taking into account the provisions of the Data Protection Regulation. In addition to national legislation, A's role as head of the data protection authority was regulated by EU-level provisions on data protection authorities. In the Member States since 25 May 2018, the directly applicable data protection regulation was based on the independent role of the supervisory authority. Although the Data Protection Regulation did not contain explicit provisions on probation, the minimum length of term in Article 54 (1) (d) of the Regulation set limits on the application of national provisions on probation. The application of the probationary provisions of the Provincial Civil Service Act so that the employment of the head of the Data Supervision Authority was automatically terminated after the probationary period due to the absence of a new permanent appointment decision could not be considered in accordance with the automatically, without the possibility of an appeal, would have meant that, in breach of the provisions of the Finnish Constitution, the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union and the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, Mr A would not have had an effective opportunity to bring a case before a court. In view of the fact that the probationary period imposed under Article 10 of the Provincial Civil Service Act did not comply with the requirement of Article 54 (1) (d) of the Data Protection Regulation, to which A had the right to appeal under the provisions of the Provincial Civil Service Act. As Mr A's employment and termination had not been assessed in the light of the provisions of the Data Protection Regulation, the decision to terminate his employment had to be annulled and the matter referred back to the provincial government for reconsideration. Vote 41.1.Constitutional Constitution Article 21 (1) and Article 120 Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union Article 19 (1) Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union Article 47 Regulation (EU) 2016/679 of the European Parliament and of the Council on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data Repealing Article 46, Article 52, Article 53 (1), (3) and (4) and Article 54 (1) (a) to (e) of the Åland Self-Government Act Articles 1, 3 (2) and 25 (2) 61) for the Land of Åland 1 § 1 (1), 2 (1) to (2), 10 (38), (38) (6) and (61) of the Land Law (2019: 9) 1–2, 15 § 1 and 3 samt 4, 3 points, 16 16 (1), 18 § 2 samt 36 The matter has been decided by legal advisers Anne E. Niemi, Outi Suviranta, Janne Aer, Petri Helander and Kristina Björkvall. The rapporteur is Kaisa Pärssinen-Knight. The report is available in its entirety on the Swedish decision-making website.