Proposal for a Regulation amending Regulation (EC) No 1206/2001 on cooperation between the courts of the Member States in the taking of evidence in civil or commercial matters

Author (Corporate)
Series Details COM (2018) 378
Publication Date 31/05/2018
Content Type


Legislative initiative put forward by the European Commission on 31 May 2018 setting out a number of amendments to Regulation (EC) No 1206/2001, which establishes a system for the transmission of requests for the taking and execution of evidence between courts.

Further information:

Regulation (EC) No 1206/2001 establishes an EU-wide system for the direct and rapid transmission of requests for the taking and execution of evidence between courts and lays down precise rules as to the form and content of such requests. It has been seen as an important instrument for European judicial cooperation, given that it is often crucial to present sufficient evidence to the court to prove a claim.

The European Commission conducted a REFIT evaluation on the Regulation in 2017 to assess its practical operation. The findings of that report were used as a basis for the problem definition in the impact assessment accompanying this proposal for amendments. Primarily, the draft law addresses the need for modernisation, in particular digitalisation and the use of modern technology in the cross-border taking of evidence. It also addresses delays and costs for citizens, businesses and Member States, shortcomings in the protection of procedural rights and legal complexity and uncertainty.

The proposal was tabled by the European Commission on 31 May 2018 as part of a package for the modernisation of judicial cooperation in civil and commercial matters. The plenary of the European Parliament adopted the its position on 13 February 2019, which was carried forward in January 2020. Following a number of discussions, the Council of the European Union eventually adopted its general approach on 7 February 2020. An informal agreement between the co-legislators on a compromise text for this draft law was reached on 30 June. The Council endorsed it on 22 July.

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Related Link(s)
Commentary and Analysis
EPRS: Briefing, May 2019: Revising the Taking of Evidence Regulation

EUR-Lex: SWD(2018)284: Executive summary of the impact assessment
EUR-Lex: SWD(2018)285: Impact assessment
European Parliament: Legislative Observatory: Procedure File for Proposal on Cooperation between the courts: taking of evidence in civil or commercial matters
European Parliament: Legislative Train Schedule: Revision of Regulation on Taking of Evidence in Civil Proceedings
European Commission: e-Justice Portal: Taking of Evidence
European Commission: Press Release, 31/05/2018: Commission proposes to modernise and digitalise EU civil judicial cooperation
Council of the European Union: Press Release, 30/06/2020: Modernising judicial cooperation across borders: Presidency and Parliament reach provisional agreement on the taking of evidence and the service of documents regulations
European Parliament: Press Release, 30/06/2020: Deal on digitalisation of access to justice will benefit citizens
European Commission: Statement, 22/07/2020: Digitalising and modernising judicial cooperation: Council endorses provisional agreement reached with the European Parliament on service of documents and taking of evidence

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