In November 2011, I submitted a complaint to the EU Ombudsman because the Commission failed to provide me with documents I needed for my research. The Commission finally provided me with the documents in late December, but I only got partial access and it became clear that they failed to follow the procedures properly.
Hence, my complaint remained valid, and it is valid until today. Today, I received a letter from the Ombudsman telling me that (my highlight):
“On 2 February, I asked the European Commission to send an opinion on your complaint by 30 April 2012. […] [B]y letter of 15 May 2012 [sic!] the Commission let me know it will not be able to meet the above deadline and that it intends to send its reply by 31 May 2012.“
I should add that the first request for documents concerned was made on 5 July 2011. I am currently in the process of finalising the research for which I initially requested these documents.
In the meantime, I re-reread Article 42 of the Charta of Fundamental Rights of the EU:
“Any citizen of the Union, and any natural or legal person residing or having its registered office in a Member State, has a right of access to documents of the institutions, bodies, offices and agencies of the Union, whatever their medium.”