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Judgment No. 503


1. The European Patent Organisation shall pay the complainant compensation amounting to 4,000 Deutschmarks plus interest at 10 per cent a year from 30 January 1981.
2. The Organisation shall pay the complainant 1,000 Deutschmarks as costs.
3. The other claims are dismissed.



The complainant, a dutyman, was dismissed at the end of the probationary period. The director took the view that there was personal incompatibility: there was no mistake of law. But there is no evidence that personal incompatibility made the team's work impossible. As the complainant has not asked for reinstatement, he shall receive compensation of 4,000 Deutschmarks with interest at the rate of 10 per cent from the date on which the complaint was filed.


probationary period; termination of employment; working relations; mistaken conclusion; material damages

Consideration 1


"Under [the applicable rule] and the general principles of international public service the purpose of probation is to discover whether the official has the qualities which warrant keeping him on the staff. It is for the President to decide, in the light of the evidence before him, whether to dismiss the official or to grant him a permanent appointment."


international civil service principles; probationary period; termination of employment; discretion; purpose

Consideration 2


"The Tribunal is competent to review the lawfulness of a decision by the appointing authority to terminate the probation period. Because of the nature of the decision, however, the Tribunal may merely consider whether - apart from any formal or procedural irregularities - the decision should be quashed because of an error of law or of fact or because essential facts were overlooked or clearly mistaken conclusions drawn from the evidence, or because there was abuse of authority."


probationary period; termination of employment; judicial review; discretion

Last updated: 25.08.2020 ^ top