Applicant name X.
Applicant type Natural person
Country Switzerland
Decision no.8257/78
Institution Commission
Type Decision
Outcome Art. 8 Inadmissible
Reason Exhaustion domestic remedies; manifestly ill-founded (health; rights and freedoms of others)
Type of privacy Private life; family life?
Keywords Even if; care-giver; custody
Facts of the case Applicant takes care of child of a befriended couple. After several years, the couple wants to take up their role as parents again, but applicant refuses. A national court first awards her custody, but a higher court denies her so.
Analysis The case is interesting for three reasons:

1. The Commission finds that the applicant did not exhaust all domestic remedies, but then continues all the same by explaining why, in any case, it would have declared the case inadmissible.
2. The Commission explicitly does not want to say that the matter impacted the applicant’s family life, but rather refers to her private life being harmed. Although there are factual ties, there are no legal ties and no biological ties. ‘It is here not necessary to decide whether, in the absence of any legal relationship, the ties between the applicant and the child amounted to “family life” in accordance with the above-cited provision . Bearing in mind that the applicant has cared for the child for many years and is deeply attached to him, the separation ordered by the Court undoubtedly affects her “private life”, the respect for which is also guaranteed by Article 8 . In this connection the Commission refers to its previous decisions that the concept of private life also includes “to a certain extent the right to establish and develop relationships with other human beings” Icf . N° 6825/75, Decisions and Reports 5, p . 86, 89; Brüggemann and Scheuten, Commission’s report, para . 55 and para . 57).’
3. The Commission continues to struggle with which legitimation ground to invoke in cases which concern the protection of children: the protection of their health and morals or the protection of their rights and freedoms. In this case, the Commission deployes a new combination, refering to both the child’s rights and freedoms and “the protection of the health (understood in a wide sense) of the child”. Because the interests of the child always prevails, the Commission would have declared the complaint inadmissible in any case.

Documents Decision