Hoppe v Germany: ECHR 5 Dec 2002

Hudoc No violation of Art. 8 ; No violation of Art. 6-1
The applicant complained that he had been denied a fair hearing in appeal proceedings concerning his right of access to his daughter contrary to article 6(1).
Held: ‘The court recalls further that article 6(1) requires in principle that a hearing be held. The question therefore arises whether a departure from this principle could, in the circumstances of the case, be justified at the appeal stage.
The manner in which article 6 of the Convention applies to proceedings before courts of appeal depends on the special features of the domestic proceedings viewed as a whole. Even where the court of appeal has jurisdiction both over the facts and in law, article 6 does not always require a right to a public hearing, irrespective of the nature of the issues to be decided. The publicity requirement is certainly one of the means whereby confidence in the courts is maintained. However, there are other considerations, including the right to a trial within a reasonable time and the related need for an expeditious handling of the courts’ case load, which must be taken into account in determining the necessity of public hearings in the proceedings subsequent to the trial at first instance level. Provided a public hearing has been held at first instance, the absence of a hearing before a second or third instance may accordingly be justified by the special features of the proceedings at issue.’ and
‘in cases concerning a person’s relationship with his or her child, there is a duty to exercise exceptional diligence in view of the risk that the passage of time may result in a de facto determination of the matter.’


28422/95, (2002) 38 EHRR 285, [2003] 1 FLR 384, [2002] ECHR 793, [2002] ECHR 799


Worldlii, Bailii


European Convention on Human Rights 8


Human Rights

Cited by:

CitedF v M FD 1-Apr-2004
The court considered the ‘ongoing debate’ about the court’s role in contact disputes. ‘this case illustrates all too uncomfortably the failings of the system. There is much wrong with our system and the time has come for us to recognise that fact . .
CitedDudson, Regina (on the Application of) v Secretary of State for the Home Department HL 28-Jul-2005
The defendant had committed a murder when aged 16, and after conviction sentenced to be detailed during Her Majesty’s Pleasure. His tarriff had been set at 18 years, reduced to 16 years after review.
Held: ‘What is at issue is the general . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Human Rights, Children

Updated: 03 August 2022; Ref: scu.178373