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Anatoliy Marinov v. Bulgaria, No. 26081/17, ECtHR (Fourth Section), 15 February 2022

Type Judgment
Case number 26081/17


Deprivation of the right to vote following a partial protection order due to mental disability.

Normative references

Art. 3, Prot. 1 ECHR


1. Regarding the right to vote of persons suffering from mental disorders, the Court has ruled that States enjoy a wide margin of appreciation regarding the exclusion of such persons from exercising this right. Such a restriction may be justified by the fact that the right to vote is exercised by persons capable of making decisions in an informed and autonomous manner.

2. The Bulgarian legislature, having adopted a law that did not distinguish between persons with mental illness under partial or full guardianship, never attempted to weigh the competing interests or to assess the proportionality of the restriction, thus infringing Article 3 Protocol 1 ECHR.
(The applicant, after being recognised as suffering from mental disorders, was placed under partial guardianship. As a result, the Bulgarian law did not recognise partial and full protection and deprived the person of the right to vote).