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Parliamentary questions
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4 September 2018
Question for written answer E-004488-18
to the Commission
Rule 130
Nikolaos Chountis (GUE/NGL)

 Subject:  Court jurisdiction in respect of an accident at work suffered in the EU by a naval worker who is a citizen of an EU Member State
 Answer in writing 

In 1995, a Greek chief mate of a Greek-owned cargo ship was seriously injured while working in a port in the Netherlands. An employee of a Dutch private company in charge of port administration and management was responsible for the accident.

The victim sustained irreversible physical injuries and underwent many surgical operations in the Netherlands and, later, in Greece.

In 1997, the Supreme Naval Medical Council pronounced him fully and definitively unfit for work, and the Greek state awarded him a disability pension.

The victim brought proceedings under the Greek justice system (mainly for reasons of financial difficulty and problems with moving because of his health) against the Dutch port management company for a ruling on the case and the award of compensation.

The Greek courts rejected the citizen’s application for an action on the grounds that they had no international jurisdiction regarding the dispute at issue.

In view of the above, will the Commission say:
1. Within the framework of the free movement of workers in the EU, does this worker, who is a citizen of an EU Member State, have a right, in this particular case, to choose the country in which his case is heard?
2. Since the Greek bodies have already refused to hear the case, what options does the worker have? What do the EU Treaties and the legislation and case-law of the European Court of Justice have to say with regard to this issue?
Original language of question: EL 
Last updated: 19 September 2018Legal notice