Nigel Foster. EU Law Directions 6 ed. 2018. p. 60

2.5.1 Composition and organisation

The CoJ presently consists of 28 judges, one for each member state (as from 1 July 2013) and 11 Advocates-General (AGs) (as from 7 October 2015) (Article 252 TFEU), nominated and appointed by unanimous agreement by the governments of the member states for a renewable period of six years.


The Court can sit as a full court with a quorum of 17 judges, a Grand Chamber of 15 judges with a quorum of 11 to hear cases involving either member states or Union institutions, or in chambers of three or five judges and of which there are 10 in total.

Alina Kaczorowska-Ireland. European Union Law 4 ed. 2016. p. 98.

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  1. Both text-books imply that the Grand Chamber requires 15 judges. See Foster – isn't the "quorum" 15? How can there be a "quorum of 11"?

  2. See Alina – If you have a chamber of 5 judges, how can quorum be 3? If quorum is 3, then you have a chamber of 3, not 5!


A quorum is the minimum number of members of a deliberative assembly (a body that uses parliamentary procedure, such as a legislature) necessary to conduct the business of that group.

So the Grand Chamber is 15 members, if at least 11 turn up they can conduct their business, if 10 or less turn up, they can’t. Similarly, there are 28 judges in the full court of which 15 need to turn up.

Quorum are extremely common - they allow the business of the body to proceed even if some of their members are sick, or on holiday, or stuck in traffic, or slept through their alarms etc.

  • "Quorum are" - 'Quorum' is the singular in English. It should be "Quorums are". (In Latin, quorum means "of whom" and is the genitive plural of qui - "who"; but that is the etymology of the English word, not the English word itself). Nov 19 '19 at 14:07

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