On June 9, 2015, Max Schrems tweeted that the advocate general of the European Court of Justice (“ECJ”) will delay his opinion in Europe v. Facebook, a case challenging the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor Framework. The opinion was previously scheduled to be issued on June 24. No new date has been set.
The delay may allow the U.S. and EU to conclude their negotiations regarding updating the Safe Harbor Framework before the ECJ issues an opinion that could impact the Framework. According to reports, although certain issues concerning the national security exemptions to the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor Framework still need to be resolved, the negotiations are expected to be concluded within weeks.
In his case against Facebook, Austrian law student Max Schrems challenges the Irish Data Protection Commissioner’s claim that the Safe Harbor agreement precluded the agency from stopping data transfers from Ireland to the U.S. by Facebook, which participates in the Safe Harbor. Schrems’ case was prompted by the Snowden revelations about U.S. national security authorities accessing personal data of EU citizens transferred to the U.S. via the Safe Harbor Framework. Schrems is seeking the end of the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor Framework.