Directorates and units

Directorate B - Regulatory affairs

 

Unit B1: Committees Secretariat

Role

The Committees Secretariat Unit ensures that the Agency's three technical and scientific Committees operate in an independent, efficient, transparent, and consistent manner and can deliver high-quality scientific opinions or agreements.

Tasks

The Committees Secretariat:

  • Provides the Secretariat for the three ECHA Committees (Member State Committee – MSC, Committee for Risk Assessment – RAC, Committee for Socio-Economic Analysis - SEAC) and plans, prepares, organises and follows up their work
  • Chairs the three Committees
  • Supports Committee members, in particular rapporteurs, and external experts in relation to their Committee tasks
  • Maintains the Manual of Decisions (MSC) and Manual of Conclusions and Recommendations (RAC, SEAC)
  • Administers the contracts with the rapporteurs and/or experts providing a service for the Committees
  • Informs stakeholders and the public about the work and outputs of the Committees
  • Establishes and maintains appropriate procedures and working relations with other relevant Community committees and scientific advisory bodies, in order to ensure consistency between the opinions of ECHA Committees and of other relevant Committees, including those run by other EU bodies

 

Unit B2: Legal Affairs

Role

The Legal Affairs Unit manages ECHA's legal affairs. It provides legal advice and support to the Executive Director and to the Directorates on all issues having legal implications in order to ensure that ECHA's decisions, opinions, positions and agreements as well as the assistance to companies are in conformity with the regulations that govern the Agency.

Tasks

The Legal Affairs Unit:

Litigation and complaints

  • Is responsible for all litigation that involves ECHA
  • Defends ECHA in any appeal or court proceedings or in front of the European Ombudsman
  • Provides legal analysis concerning rectification of decisions
  • Protects ECHA's intellectual property in national courts
  • Drafts Executive Director decisions for review of decisions on confidentiality claims and on alternative names as well as for staff complaints
  • Provides strategic advice  in pre-litigation situations and conducts settlement negotiations 
  • Analyses complaints received and provides support in responding to them

Legal verification

  • Provides ex ante legal verification of ECHA's decisions, positions, opinions and agreements
  • Reviews procedures, templates, guidance and communications relating to decision and opinion making

Legal advice

  • Provides in-house tailor made legal advice to support the Agency's management
  • Answers legal questions referred to it by the different units
  • Coordinates the requests for access to documents
  • Provides advice on protection and management of ECHA's IPR (Intellectual Property Rights)
  • Coordinates consultations with the Commission on legal interpretations
  • Provides in-house training on legal issues as well as on access to documents and conflict of interests
  • Maintains the legislation pages on ECHA's website
  • Acts as ECHA's contact point for the Inter-Agency Legal Network

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