Although the European Commission on Human Rights became obsolete in 1998 with the restructuring of the European Court of Human Rights, it held an important role in assisting the European Court of Human Rights from 1953 to 1998. Commission members were elected by the Committee of Ministers and would hold office for six years (during which time they were to act independently, without allegiance to any state). Their role was to consider if a petition was admissible to the Court. If so, the Commission would examine the petition to determine the facts of the case and look for parties that could help settle the case in a friendly manner. If a friendly settlement could not take place, the Commission would issue a report on the established facts with an opinion on whether or not a violation had occurred. A Committee of three people determined the admissibility of a petition. For difficult decisions, however, a Chamber consisting of seven people handled it.