Charter of Fundamental Rights
What is the Charter of Fundamental Rights?
The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union brings together into a single, simple text the civil, political, economic and social rights recognised by the European Union.
Before the Charter, these rights were already protected, mainly through the case law of the European Court of Justice. Many of them derive from the European Convention on Human Rights, as interpreted by the European Court of Human Rights. The aim of the Charter is to make these rights more explicit and more visible.
You can refer to the Charter when challenging a decision of the Union's institutions (and bodies, offices or agencies) or a decision of member states when they are implementing EU law. The Charter cannot be invoked in internal matters of the member states which have no connection with the application of EU law.
The Charter became legally binding when the Treaty of Lisbon entered into force on 1 December 2009, as the Treaty confers on the Charter the same legal value as the treaties (Article 6 of the Treaty on European Union (pdf)).
Please visit the following sites to find out more about the Charter: