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Last update: 16-08-2006
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Legal order - Slovenia

  • The sources of law in Slovenia are as follows: the Constitution, zakoni (Acts), international treaties that have been ratified and published, EU decisions and regulations, implementing legislation (uredbe (decrees), pravilniki (rules), odloki (orders) and sklepi (decisions)), and general instruments enacted by local communities. Article 8 of the Slovenian Constitution states that Acts and other instruments must comply with generally applicable principles of international law and with treaties that are binding on Slovenia. Under Article 153, individual acts and actions of state authorities, local authorities and holders of public authority must be based on an Act or an instrument adopted pursuant to an Act.

The secondary sources of law consist of case law, in particular decisions by the Constitutional Court, the Supreme Court and higher courts, and usage and custom.

  • The highest source of law is the Constitution, which is followed in the hierarchy by Acts, then by implementing legislation and local community instruments. The Constitution and Acts are adopted by the Državni zbor (National Assembly) under the legislative procedure. Implementing legislation – decrees, rules, orders and decisions – is adopted by the Government or by individual ministries for their particular field of activity.

The Constitution is amended by a special procedure laid down in Part IX of the Constitution itself. An amending proposal may be put forward by twenty members of the ninety-member National Assembly, by the Government or by at least thirty thousand electors. The proposal is decided upon by the National Assembly by a two-thirds majority of MPs present. However, the actual amendment is passed only if two-thirds of all MPs vote in favour. Article 87 of the Constitution states that the rights and duties of citizens and other persons may be determined by the National Assembly only by Act. Acts may be proposed by the Government, by any MP or by at least five thousand electors.

Acts are generally adopted by the National Assembly in three stages. The National Assembly takes its decision by a majority of votes cast by MPs present, save where otherwise provided by the Constitution, by Act or by the National Assembly’s Rules of Procedure. Acts adopted by the National Assembly are promulgated by the President of the Republic and then published in the Uradni list (Official Gazette) before they enter into force. Legal instruments of the State must be published in the Official Gazette, whereas local community instruments are published in the official publication of that community.

International treaties to which Slovenia is a party enter into force after ratification by the National Assembly under a tailor-made procedure. The Government proposes a bill on ratification, which is then passed if a majority of MPs present vote in favour, save where otherwise provided by the Constitution or by Act.

Implementing legislation is adopted by the Government - or by individual ministers for their field of activity - on the basis of an Act and published in the Official Gazette.

EU regulations and decisions adopted by the EU institutions are directly applicable in Slovenia. They do not have to be ratified or published in the Official Gazette in order to enter into force.

Matters affecting local communities (municipalities) are dealt with by elected bodies representing those communities (municipal councils), which adopt general instruments that must be in accordance with the Constitution and with Acts.

  • The Constitutional Court is responsible for solving any inconsistency between an Act and the Constitution, between an Act or other instrument and ratified international treaties or the general principles of international law, between implementing legislation and the Constitution or Acts, or between a local community instrument and the Constitution or Acts. Conflicts between provisions of legal instruments of the same hierarchical rank or between provisions of the same instrument are resolved on a case-by-case basis by applying the rules on the interpretation of the law.

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Last update: 16-08-2006

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