Article 80
Representation of data subjects

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(142) Where a data subject considers that his or her rights under this Regulation are infringed, he or she should have the right to mandate a not-for-profit body, organisation or association which is constituted in accordance with the law of a Member State, has statutory objectives which are in the public interest and is active in the field of the protection of personal data to lodge a complaint on his or her behalf with a supervisory authority, exercise the right to a judicial remedy on behalf of data subjects or, if provided for in Member State law, exercise the right to receive compensation on behalf of data subjects. A Member State may provide for such a body, organisation or association to have the right to lodge a complaint in that Member State, independently of a data subject's mandate, and the right to an effective judicial remedy where it has reasons to consider that the rights of a data subject have been infringed as a result of the processing of personal data which infringes this Regulation. That body, organisation or association may not be allowed to claim compensation on a data subject's behalf independently of the data subject's mandate.

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(55) Whereas, if the controller fails to respect the rights of data subjects, national legislation must provide for a judicial remedy; whereas any damage which a person may suffer as a result of unlawful processing must be compensated for by the controller, who may be exempted from liability if he proves that he is not responsible for the damage, in particular in cases where he establishes fault on the part of the data subject or in case of force majeure; whereas sanctions must be imposed on any person, whether governed by private of public law, who fails to comply with the national measures taken under this Directive;

The GDPR

Article 80 specifies and supplements the Directive regarding option for representation by an association. The Regulation provides that an association (non-profit association active in the protection of the rights of the data subjects) can be mandated by a data subject not only to lodge the complaint on his or her behalf, to exercise the rights referred to in Articles 77 on his or her behalf, but also for judicial remedy against a decision of a supervisory authority (Article 78) or against a controller or a processor (see Article 79).

The final version of the Regulation adds that the association is also granted the right to claim compensation as provided by Article 82 on behalf of the data subject where he or she considers that his or her rights under this Regulation have been infringed and as provided by Member State law.

The Member States may grant major powers of action to the associations charged with the protection of rights and freedoms in the data processing. If the state makes use of this provision, these associations may, at their initiative (i.e., regardless of any mandate by a data subject) lodge a claim with a supervisory authority in the territory of the Member State of their establishment (Art. 77) or expedite a judicial remedy against a decision of a supervisory authority (Article 78) or against a controller or a processor (Article 79) if they consider that the rights of a data subject have breached because the personal data processing has not been compliant with the Regulation (paragraph 2).

The Directive

The Directive already provided for the possibility of an association undertaking to lodge a complaint with a supervisory authority on behalf of a person complaining of a breach of his or her rights and freedoms in the context of the personal data processing (see Article 28 (6) of the Directive).

Potential issues

It is a fundamental principle, that associations have the recognized  powers to defend of the rights of data subjects.. We strongly believe this measure will contribute to ensuring the effectiveness of the rights granted to the data subjects by the personal data processing.

Jurisdictional procedures already exist for data subjects; however, it is very rare that a person resorts to legal proceedings, especially in view of the costs. In other words, at present, it is not worth the effort.

However, this development could lead to many problems of implementation. Regarding the possibility for these associations introducing a procedure regardless of a mandate by the data subject,  it is not possible to predict the future implications in different Member states and disparities in the protection of the data subjects will appear on this point.

Associations must exist and be active regarding data protection, but will often involve a significant change in attitudes of the public, members and authorities.

Regulation
1e 2e

Art. 80

1.   The data subject shall have the right to mandate a not-for-profit body, organisation or association which has been properly constituted in accordance with the law of a Member State, has statutory objectives which are in the public interest, and is active in the field of the protection of data subjects' rights and freedoms with regard to the protection of their personal data to lodge the complaint on his or her behalf, to exercise the rights referred to in Articles 77, 78 and 79 on his or her behalf, and to exercise the right to receive compensation referred to in Article 82 on his or her behalf where provided for by Member State law.

2.   Member States may provide that any body, organisation or association referred to in paragraph 1 of this Article, independently of a data subject's mandate, has the right to lodge, in that Member State, a complaint with the supervisory authority which is competent pursuant to Article 77 and to exercise the rights referred to in Articles 78 and 79 if it considers that the rights of a data subject under this Regulation have been infringed as a result of the processing.

1st proposal close

Art. 76

1. Any body, organisation or association referred to in Article 73(2) shall have the right to exercise the rights referred to in Articles 74 and 75 on behalf of one or more data subjects.

2. Each supervisory authority shall have the right to engage in legal proceedings and bring an action to court, in order to enforce the provisions of this Regulation or to ensure consistency of the protection of personal data within the Union.

3. Where a competent court of a Member State has reasonable grounds to believe that parallel proceedings are being conducted in another Member State, it shall contact the competent court in the other Member State to confirm the existence of such parallel proceedings.

4. Where such parallel proceedings in another Member State concern the same measure, decision or practice, the court may suspend the proceedings.

5. Member States shall ensure that court actions available under national law allow for the rapid adoption of measures including interim measures, designed to terminate any alleged infringement and to prevent any further impairment of the interests involved.

2nd proposal close

Art. 76

1. The data subject shall have the right to mandate a body, organisation or association, which has been properly constituted according to the law of a Member State and whose statutory objectives include the protection of data subjects’ rights and freedoms with regard to the protection of their personal data, to lodge the complaint on his or her behalf and to exercise the rights referred to in Articles 73, 74 and 75 on his or her behalf. 1a. (...)

2. Member States may provide that any body, organisation or association referred to in paragraph 1, independently of a data subject's mandate (…), shall have in such Member State the right to lodge a complaint with the supervisory authority competent in accordance with Article 73 and to exercise the rights referred to in Articles 73, 74 and 75 if it considers that the rights of a data subject have been infringed as a result of the processing of personal data that is not in compliance with this Regulation.

3. (…)

4. (…)

Directive close

Art. 28

(…)

4. Each supervisory authority shall hear claims lodged by any person, or by an association representing that person, concerning the protection of his rights and freedoms in regard to the processing of personal data. The person concerned shall be informed of the outcome of the claim.

Section 37 GDPR Implementation Law. Representation of data subjects
A claim as referred to in Article 305a of Book 3 of the Civil Code or an appeal
lodged in administrative law proceedings by an interested party within the
meaning of Section 1:2(3) of the General Administrative Law Act may not be
based on data processing in so far as the person affected by such processing
objects to it.

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