Language of document : ECLI:EU:F:2010:139


(Second Chamber)

28 October 2010

Case F-31/09

Isabelle Noël


Council of the European Union

(Civil service — Officials — Classification in grade — Local staff appointed as officials — Article 10 of Annex XIII to the Staff Regulations — Article 3 of the Annex to the CEOS)

Application: brought under Articles 236 EC and 152 EA, in which Ms Noël seeks annulment of the appointing authority’s decision of 13 November 2006 appointing her as a probationary official in grade AST 1, step 1, in so far as that decision employs her in the AST 1 to 7 career stream.

Held: The action is dismissed. The applicant is to bear her own costs and to pay the Council’s costs.


Officials — Recruitment — Classification in grade — Member of the local staff appointed as an official following an internal competition

(Staff Regulations, Art. 31; Annex XIII, Art. 10; Conditions of Employment of Other Servants, Arts 1(1) and 3)

The principle of equal treatment is not infringed provided that differences in treatment between different categories of officials are justified on the basis of an objective and reasonable criterion, and that those differences are proportionate to the aim pursued by the differentiation in question, that principle being applicable, by analogy, where different situations are treated in the same way.

The aim pursued by the reform of the Staff Regulations was, inter alia, to combine the former categories B, C and D into a single AST function group. In order to take account of differences in the level of recruitment for those categories, it was envisaged that the career stream of officials in former categories C and D would be limited to certain grades, AST 1 to 7 and AST 1 to 5 respectively, although the officials in question would have the possibility of taking part in an attestation procedure in order to be promoted beyond those grades. In the light of those concerns, the fact that the administration places local staff appointed as officials as a result of an internal competition, pursuant to Article 3 of the Annex to the Conditions of Employment of Other Servants, on the same footing as former category C or category D officials, according to the duties they performed, in order to determine in which career stream to employ them, is justified on the basis of an objective and reasonable criterion, that is to say, to prevent local staff performing the same duties as former category C or D officials from receiving better treatment than the latter. Furthermore, treating local staff who have become officials in exactly the same way as former category C or D officials satisfies the requirement of proportionality, since it is for the administration to determine, for the purposes of applying Article 10 of Annex XIII to the Staff Regulations, to which category of the former nomenclature each member of the local staff should be treated as equivalent, according to the duties he performs.

(see para. 21)


F-54/06 Davisand Others v Council [2007] ECR-SC I‑A‑1‑165 and II‑A‑1‑911, para. 64 and the case-law cited therein