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Last update: 19-04-2007
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Organisation of justice - Slovakia

In Slovakia a distinction is made between ordinary courts and the Constitutional Court of the Slovak Republic, which has a special status. Slovakia has a two-tier judiciary.

The Slovak Ministry of Justice is the central government body responsible for administration of the courts.

The judiciary

The Slovak judiciary comprises:

  • district courts;
  • regional courts;
  • the Supreme Court of the Slovak Republic.
The system also includes a Special Court. In addition, there are military courts in the form of the military district courts and the Higher Military Court.

Jurisdiction of the courts

District courts act as courts of first instance in civil and criminal cases.

They also deal with electoral cases, where stipulated by law.

Regional courts act as courts of second instance in civil and criminal cases heard in the first instance by district courts.

Regional courts act as courts of first instance in administrative cases, save where otherwise stipulated by law.

The Supreme Court hears ordinary appeals against decisions by regional courts, the Special Court and the Higher Military Court, where stipulated by the rules governing court proceedings.

The Supreme Court hears extraordinary appeals against decisions by district courts, regional courts, the Special Court, the Supreme Court and the military courts, where stipulated by the rules governing court proceedings.

The Supreme Court resolves conflicts of competence between courts and bodies of central government administration.

The Supreme Court can also reassign a case to a court other than the competent court, where stipulated by the rules governing court proceedings.

The Constitutional Court of the Slovak Republic is an independent judicial body that protects constitutionality. The fundamental status of the Constitutional Court is laid down in the Constitution of the Slovak Republic.

The Constitutional Court rules on compatibility as follows:

  • the compatibility of acts of law with the Constitution, constitutional acts and international treaties agreed to by the National Council of the Slovak Republic that have been ratified and promulgated in the legally stipulated manner;
  • the compatibility of government regulations and generally binding legal provisions laid down by ministries and other central government bodies with the Constitution, constitutional acts, international treaties agreed to by the National Council of the Slovak Republic that have been ratified and promulgated in the legally stipulated manner, and acts of law;
  • the compatibility of generally binding legal provisions within the meaning of Article 68 with constitutional acts, international treaties agreed to by the National Council of the Slovak Republic that have been ratified and promulgated in the legally stipulated manner, and acts of law, where this is not a matter for another court;
  • compatibility of generally binding legal provisions laid down by local agencies of central government and generally binding regulations laid down by self-governing local authorities within the meaning of Article 71(2) with the Constitution, constitutional acts, international treaties promulgated in the legally stipulated manner, acts of law, government regulations and generally binding legal provisions laid down by ministries and other central government bodies, where this is not a matter for another court.

The Constitutional Court decides on disputes in matters of jurisdiction between central government bodies, except where the law stipulates that such disputes are to be ruled on by some other State body.

The Constitutional Court rules on complaints by individuals and legal entities alleging infringement of their fundamental rights and freedoms or human rights and basic freedoms laid down in an international treaty ratified by the Slovak Republic and promulgated in the legally stipulated manner, if the protection of these rights and freedoms is not a matter for another court.

The Constitutional Court rules on complaints by self-governing local authorities against an unconstitutional or unlawful decision or other unconstitutional or unlawful intervention in a matter falling within the scope of their self-governing powers, if this protection is not a matter for another court.

Where there is a matter of dispute, the Constitutional Court interprets the Constitution and constitutional acts. A decision by the Constitutional Court interpreting the Constitution or a constitutional act is promulgated in the same way as acts of law. The interpretation becomes generally binding from the date on which it is promulgated.

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Last update: 19-04-2007

 
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