Judgment No. 4052
1. The impugned decision of 13 June 2016 is set aside, as is the earlier decision of 18 February 2016.
2. The case is sent back to the EPO for the President of the Office to undertake a new examination, which shall take into account the instruction to the President contained in Administrative Council Resolution CA/26/16 dated 16 March 2016.
3. The claim against the house ban decision is dismissed.
The complainant contests the decision to subject him to disciplinary proceedings after his separation from the EPO and to impose upon him the disciplinary measure of a reduction by one third in the amount of his retirement pension.
complaint allowed; decision quashed; case sent back to organisation; disciplinary measure
The complainant has marked both the “yes” and the “no” boxes on the complaint form under section 5 “Special Applications” for requests for oral hearings. He has not justified his request for hearings in his submissions. [...]
As the request for oral hearings is unclear and lacks any justification, it is rejected.
The Tribunal finds that inasmuch as the impugned decision is a decision that is adverse to the complainant, he has a cause of action in the present case.
cause of action
With regard to the claim concerning the house ban, the Tribunal considers that it is irreceivable. In the 18 February 2016 decision, the President wrote: “[i]n view of the specific nature of your misconduct, you continue to remain at all times excluded from entering the EPO premises”. Considering the use of the phrase “you continue to remain”, the Tribunal finds that the 18 February 2016 letter merely confirms the continuance of a previous decision, which the President made at some earlier point in time, to impose a house ban on the complainant, and cannot be considered a new decision.
The fact that the President, contrary to the Administrative Council’s instruction, did not consider that possibility [of involvement of an external reviewer or of arbitration or mediation] before adopting the impugned decision, which was the final decision on the disciplinary proceedings against the complainant, constitutes a material flaw that renders the impugned decision unlawful.
[T]he impugned decision of 13 June 2016 must be set aside, as must the earlier decision of 18 February 2016, and the case must be sent back to the President of the Office for a new examination, which shall take into account the instruction to the President contained in Administrative Council Resolution CA/26/16.
case sent back to organisation