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GDPR, this is why the new procedural rules are a crucial moment for data protection

The adoption of new procedural rules for the application of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) by the European Parliament marks a crucial moment in the configuration of the right to protection of personal data in the European Union.

These regulations, voted with 329 in favour, 213 against and 79 abstentions, aim to optimize cooperation between national supervisory authoritiesoutlining clearer mechanisms for dispute resolution and standardizing some procedures and fundamental rights.

The GDPR, which unified the data protection rights of EU citizens and guaranteed the free flow of personal data between Member States, is thus enriched by a regulatory fabric that promotes more coordinated and synergistic action between the various control authorities.

Decision-making processes reformulated

What is essential is the reformulation of decision-making processeswhich now have to reflect not just one greater transparency and fairnessbut also one more strict adherence to the principles of good administration enshrined in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union.

The emphasis placed on access to joint case files and on the right of each party to be heard before decisions are taken which could adversely affect their position, underlines the importance of a process which, in recognizing and protecting the rights of individuals, must at the same time safeguard the efficiency and effectiveness of the personal data protection system.

The procedural transparency and the right to participate occupy a central role in the procedural changes made to the GDPR regulation, as highlighted by the recent positioning of the European Parliament.

These changes highlight theimportance of procedural fairnessensuring that all parties involved have the right to be heard and access joint case files.

This “instant, uninterrupted and unlimited” access to documents allows for effective oversight by supervisory authorities and offers parties a transparent mechanism for reviewing administrative decisions.

It is observed that this approach not only strengthens the principles of good administration, but also consolidates the right of defence, an essential foundation in a self-respecting democratic system.

The accessibility and transparency of the joint case file, despite being a measure clearly aimed at promoting the coherence and predictability of decisions between the various national authorities, reflects the principle of equal treatment, which requires that no party is disadvantaged in the proceedings due to its geographical location or the competence of the supervisory authority.

Every individual's right to a fair hearing

Furthermore, the introduction of these procedural rules is configured as a structural reinforcement aimed at safeguarding the right of every individual to a fair procedure, a principle which manifests itself in the possibility of examining and contesting the evidence and arguments before a decision is made the final.

Article 41 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, which establishes the right to good administration, thus finds its more concrete application, consolidating a framework of strengthened legality which makes the EU an example of advanced protection of fundamental rights in digital field.

New operating times for the work of the Control Authorities

The new procedural rules, introduced by the European Parliament for the GDPR regulation, also establish precise deadlines for the work of the supervisory authorities.

The legislation proposes that a supervisory authority must acknowledge the receipt of a complaint within two weeks, determining its admissibility and establishing whether the case qualifies as cross-border, therefore entrusting the further procedure to the competent authority.

Subsequently, preliminary decisions must be issued within nine months of receiving the complaint, except in exceptional situations.

This strict temporal framework reflects a regulatory interpretation aimed at reconciling the need for timely responses to the parties involved with the intrinsic complexity of data protection issues.

Compliance with these terms appears essential, as it is a vehicle through which legal certainty is guaranteed, offering the parties involved a clear expectation on the progress of the proceedings.

However, the firmness of these deadlines imposes high procedural discipline and efficient resource management on supervisory authorities, in order to respect the imposed deadlines without compromising the quality of the required legal and technical analysis.

Determining the deadline for the final decision, for example, is crucial to maintaining a balance between diligence in the investigation and speed in resolving disputes, which are fundamental to the effectiveness of the data protection system in the European Union.

This regulation, insisting on timeliness, reflects a significant evolution of the legal framework regarding the protection of personal data, aimed at strengthening citizens' confidence in the effective application of the rules for the protection of their fundamental rights.


Strengthening procedural guarantees through the introduction of more stringent rules on the internal deliberations of supervisory authorities aims to protect sensitive information, maintaining transparency where necessary, but limiting access to details that could compromise the integrity of investigations.

This balance between transparency and confidentiality is crucial to maintaining the effectiveness of investigations and the protection of personal data, while ensuring that the rights of those involved are safeguarded in a thorough manner that respects current regulations.

The implementation of these principles demonstrates a strong commitment to promoting a culture of respect for fundamental rights within the European Union, consolidating an environment in which the protection of personal data and procedural justice are mutually reinforcing, in compliance with the principles of legality and procedural fairness.

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