The Norwegian SMB claims that LO and NHO have been appointed as loyal co-judges, and they usually favor them in labor law cases. Now they have asked the European Commission to intervene in the Norwegian legal system.
-Norwegian courts are independent, which is very important. Jørund Rytman of E24 said that when a small business is involved in a lawsuit, it is important to judge that the person is 100% independent and not loyal to any party.
He is the head of politics and public relations for the Norwegian SMB Business Association.
They have now lodged a complaint with Norway to the European Commission, claiming that the Norwegian courts violated Article 24 of the European Court of Justice in part.
E24 has read the complaint, and SMB has presented evidence that they believe to prove that LO and NHO, in particular, were tried by the co-judge of the district court in some employment law cases.
-Rytman said that our lawyers have proved that LO has been appointing its clients as cost-conscious co-judges, and these judges are almost entirely LO’s rulings.
Atle Sønsteli Johansen, head of the LO’s legal department, countered what he called “relatively rude hints to the judges.”
NHO also agrees with SMB’s description of the use of co-judges.
-We believe that there is no reason to say that this is a plan that is not sufficiently independent, Margrethe Meder, head of NHO’s legal services department, wrote in E24.
The official complaint is Norway. The prosecutor’s deadline was May 31 to send his reply, but he did not respond to E24’s inquiries on Thursday.
Norway has had a special labor law case handling system since 1977.
The system allows the parties to the case to propose the appointment of so-called “careful” co-judges.
Nicolay Skarning of Kvale Advokatfirma represented SMB Norge in an appeal case against the Norwegian state.
-The lawyer told E24 that the current system gives LO the opportunity to appoint its clients as co-judges to deal with their own cases submitted to the court, which threatens the independence of the court.