Everyone has the right to respect for his private and family life, his home and his correspondence. There shall be no interference by a public authority with the exercise of this right except such as is in accordance with the law and is necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security, public safety or the economic well-being of the country, for the prevention of disorder or crime, for the protection of health or morals, or for the protection of the rights and freedoms of others. Article 8 is considered to be one european court of human rights same sex marriage the Convention’s most open-ended provisions. For better understanding of perception of “private life” case law should be analyzed.
Germany, the Court held that it “does not consider it possible or necessary to attempt an exhaustive definition of the notion of ‘private life’. However, it would be too restrictive to limit the notion to an ‘inner circle’ in which the individual may live his own personal life as he choose and to exclude therefrom entirely the outside world not encompassed within that circle. In X, Y, and Z v. UK, the Court recalls that “the notion of ‘family life’ in Article 8 is not confined solely so the families based on marriage and may encompass other de facto relationship.
Article 8 clearly provides a right to be free of unlawful searches, but the Court has given the protection for “private and family life” that this article provides a broad interpretation, taking for instance that prohibition of private consensual homosexual acts violates this article. This may be compared to the jurisprudence of the United States Supreme Court, which has also adopted a somewhat broad interpretation of the right to privacy. A prisoner requested a lawyer because he said he wanted to sue a guard for defamation. Censorship of a prisoner’s correspondence regarding conditions in prison breached Article 8.
Public information that is systematically collected and stored in files held by a state or its agents falls within the scope of private life. United Kingdom Article 8 extends to protect the right to die. Like with articles 9, 10 and 11, it can be interfered with provided there’s valid justification, as there was in Pretty. Per Eady J, equitable breach of confidence is extended to protect Art. Retention of DNA information in respect of persons arrested but not convicted of an offence was held to breach Article 8. Article 8 does not confer a “right to abortion”, but the Republic of Ireland breached it by making it difficult for a woman to establish whether she qualifies for a legal abortion.
Stop and search powers granted to police under ss. Article 8 did not entitle modern-day descendants of the House of Plantagenet to be consulted on the place of re-interment of Richard III. The Court examined Russian surveillance legislation in abstracto, finding unanimously that the existence of inadequate legislation and its application in practice themselves amounted to a violation of the applicant’s rights under Article 8. The notion of private life in the Article 8 is also interpreted as including some duty of environmental protection.