Judgment No. 2930
1. The impugned decision is set aside, as is the complainant's revised staff report for the period 2000-2001.
2. The case is sent back to the EPO for a new staff report to be prepared in accordance with consideration 5 of the judgment.
3. The EPO shall pay the complainant 7,000 euros in moral damages and 1,000 euros in costs.
4. All other claims are dismissed.
"In his internal appeal the complainant claimed in particular that he had been the victim of bullying on the part of his director, who was also his reporting officer. [...] The Internal Appeals Committee [...] found that the inaccuracies it identified [in the staff report] did not, individually, constitute an 'abuse of authority' and concluded that the 'report [did] not reveal any flaws which would justify its complete retraction'. This approach involved an error of law. It was not sufficient to consider in relation to each inaccuracy whether it, standing alone, was an abuse of authority. Rather, it was necessary to consider whether, in the light of the evidence, including the various inaccuracies which it identified, the report as a whole was the result of prejudice on the part of the reporting officer."
internal appeals body; evidence; burden of proof; organisation's duties; work appraisal; performance report; formal flaw; misuse of authority; bias; abuse of power
Although the complainant asks for specific “box markings” in his 2000-2001 staff report, this is not a matter for the Tribunal. The matter must be remitted to the EPO to prepare a new staff report for the relevant period. Given the finding of prejudice on the part of the reporting officer, the new report must be drawn up by another officer based on the relevant documentation.
competence of tribunal; case sent back to organisation; performance report; rating