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Contact:legislationline@odihr.pl

Legislationline.org provides direct access to international norms and standards relating to specific human dimension issues (see list of topics on left-hand column) as well as to domestic legislation and other documents of relevance to these issues. These data and other information available from the site are intended for lawmakers across the OSCE region.     

 

 

 

 

 
 

OSCE/ODIHR has recently produced the following reviews and guidelines: 

Opinion on Certain Provisions of the Draft Act on the Supreme Court of Poland (30 August 2017)

Overall, the proposed provisions raise serious concerns with regard to key democratic principles, in particular the separation of powers and the independence of the judiciary. The Opinion concludes that the provisions reviewed, particularly those concerning the statutory retirement of existing Supreme Court judges, the appointment of replacement judges and the enhanced involvement of the Minister of Justice/General Public Prosecutor in disciplinary proceedings against Supreme Court judges, are inherently incompatible with judicial independence and should not be adopted. Other provisions that provide the executive branch with a stronger role in judicial administration or perpetuating and entrenching inequality between women and men should also be re-considered. The OSCE/ODIHR also reiterated that when initiating fundamental reforms of the judicial system, the judiciary and civil society should be consulted and should ideally play an active part in the process, in the spirit of the 1990 Copenhagen and 1991 Moscow OSCE Documents.

Opinion on the Draft Act on the National Freedom Institute - Centre for the Development of Civil Society of Poland (22 August 2017)

Overall, the Opinion notes that the executive branch appears to have a decisive influence on the governance and operation of the National Freedom Institute - Centre for the Development of Civil Society and recommends to introduce measures or safeguards limiting potential government interference in the National Institute’s work. The Draft Act also generally does not detail the modalities and procedures installed to ensure meaningful participation of civil society in the National Institute’s work and more generally in the design of civil society development programmes in Poland. The Opinion also notes that the new scheme should not lead in practice to a situation where the responsibility of distributing the great majority of funds provided by central authorities to civil society organizations would be assigned to just one entity, which would not be in line with international and regional recommendations and good practices regarding public support to associations.

Opinion on the Law on the Judiciary and the Status of Judges of Ukraine (30 June 2017)

While noting that the Law is overall in line with international standards, the Opinion warns about the possible negative consequences of the procedure for the removal of judges on the independence of the judiciary. It also emphasizes that the complicated institutional and functional set-up of the processes within the Ukrainian judiciary contemplated by the Law should be monitored regularly, to ensure that they fulfil their intended aims and do not lead to increased public expenditures, lengthier judicial proceedings and increased bureaucracy.

 

 

Final Opinion on Draft Amendments to the Act on the National Council of the Judiciary and Certain Other Acts of Poland (5 May 2017)

Overall, the proposed amendments raise serious concerns with regard to key democratic principles, in particular the separation of powers and the independence of the judiciary. By transferring the power to appoint judge members to the National Council of the Judiciary from the judiciary to the legislature, and by introducing new procedures for selecting judges which will be under the decisive influence of the legislative and executive, the draft amendments would seriously jeopardize the independence of a body which is the guarantor of judicial independence in Poland.

Moreover, the automatic termination of the mandate of the fifteen judges currently sitting on the National Council of the Judiciary 30 days after the entry into force of the Draft Act directly interferes with the guarantees of independence enjoyed by this duly constituted constitutional body. Such a provision would also be in violation of Article 6 par 1 of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, since the judge members to the Council would not be able to challenge the termination of their mandates before an ordinary tribunal or other body exercising judicial powers.

The OSCE/ODIHR therefore recommends that the draft amendments not be adopted.
  

ODIHR's work on regulatory reform:

Assessment of the Legislative Process in the Kyrgyz Republic (October 2015)

Based on a Memorandum of Understanding, signed between the OSCE/ODIHR and the Presidential Administration of the Kyrgyz Republic on 7 January 2015, the OSCE/ODIHR conducted a comprehensive assessment of the legislative process in the Kyrgyz Republic, which analyzed all the legislative and practical aspects of the law-making process in the country, and provided recommendations for reform. 

ODIHR's assessment report recommends, among other measures, to introduce unified evidence-based drafting and law-making standards in the Kyrgyz Republic, including public consultations on draft laws. It further advises law-makers to enhance policy discussions at the start of the legislative process, and to introduce more realistic procedural deadlines. 

Assessment of the Legislative Process in Georgia (January 2015)  

Based on a Memorandum of Understanding, signed between the OSCE/ODIHR and the Parliament of Georgia on 24 February 2014, the OSCE/ODIHR conducted a comprehensive assessment of the legislative process in Georgia, a situational analysis of both the formal procedures and the actual practices in Georgia that apply to the preparation, drafting, enactment, publication, communication and evaluation of legislation.

The assessment report discusses the salient aspects of the legislative drafting / law-making process in the country and identifies the existing concerns and risks as well as a number of goals to be achieved in order to enable the law-making system to function in a more effective, transparent and efficient way. 



 

Legal Reviews

Opinion on Certain Provisions of the Draft Act on the Supreme Court of Poland (in English)

Date : 30 August 2017 English [0.98 MB]

Opinion on Certain Provisions of the Draft Act on the Supreme Court of Poland (in Polish)

Date : 30 August 2017 Polish [1.16 MB]

Annex to the Opinion on the Draft Act on the National Freedom Institute - Centre for the Development of Civil Society of Poland (in Polish)

Date : 22 August 2017 Polish [0.42 MB]
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Lawmaking surveys

Assessment of the Legislative Process in the Kyrgyz Republic

Date : 08 December 2015 English [0.56 MB]

Assessment of the Legislative Process in Georgia

Date : 30 January 2015 English [0.37 MB]

Assessment of the Legislative Process in Georgia (in Georgian)

Date : 30 January 2015 Georgian [0.45 MB]
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