Submission of an Individual Communication

For a communication to be considered by the Committee on the Rights of a Child:

  • It cannot be anonymous
  • it must be submitted in writing
  • it must concern a State which is both party to the OPIC and to the instrument(s) which protects the rights allegedly violated (UNCRC and/or OPAC and/or OPSC)
  • it must be submitted by:
    • an individual or a group of individuals within the jurisdiction of the State party in question (regardless of whether their legal capacity is recognized in the State party against which the communication is directed); or
    • by their designated representatives; or
    • by others acting on behalf of the alleged victim(s) with their express consent;
    • by others acting on behalf of the alleged victim(s) without their express consent, provided that the author can justify his/her/their action.
  • The victim(s) must agree to disclose his/her/their identity to the State against which the violation is alleged

! However, the names of the author(s) and/or alleged victim(s) of a communication shall not be published in any final decision taken by the Committee, except where, in view of the age and maturity of the victim(s), express consent may be provided to publish their names.

Rule 13 and 29.4 of the Rules of procedures under the OPIC


Keep in Mind

Generally, for a communication to be considered by the Committee:

    • All available domestic remedies must have been exhausted;
    • The same matter must not already been examined by the Committee or under another procedure of international investigation or settlement;
    • The communication must concern facts that occurred after the entry into force of the OPIC for the State concerned;
    • The communication cannot be submitted more than one year after the exhaustion of domestic remedies.

Rule 16 of the Rules of procedures under the OPIC

Getting the Complaint to the Committee

Preparing the form for submission of the complaint

The OHCHR has prepared a model form for submission of individual communications to the Committee on the Rights of the Child under the OPIC, guiding the submission process. This model form, which is now common for all UN Treaty Bodies, can be found here: English | Français | русский | Español

You can also find a supplementary and very useful guidance note for submitting individual communications to UN Treaty Bodies here: English | Français | русский | Español

! If you file a communication and would like the Committee to consider requesting interim measures, you should clearly state this in your communication. The consideration of any communication or inquiry that requires interim measures will be expedited.

Sending the Complaint

Once completed, the complaint (and any relevant information which becomes available after the complaint has been submitted) can be sent by e-mail to the Petitions Team of the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights:

Request of additional information/clarification & comments to the other party
The Petitions team can request for clarification or additional information. If the complaint is registered, it will be shared with the State-party against which the communication was brought, which will be invited to comment. 

The author(s) of the communication and the State-party against which the communication was brought will always be informed on the other parties’ comments, having the possibility to provide its own response.

Rule 15, 16 and 18 of the Rules of procedures under the OPIC

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