31 October 2017
The Conditions of Initiation of Constitutional Complaint Proceedings – Frequently asked questions
1. Who has the right to initiate the proceeding?
Constitutional complaints may be submitted only by those who are concerned in the case before courts or authorities.
In the course of constitutional complaint proceedings, legal representation is not mandatory. If the petitioner is represented by lawyers (attorneys/law firms), the right to represent has to be certified. Lawyers /attorneys/ law firms or representatives of rights defender social organisations who have passed the bar examination may act as legal representatives. The legal advisor of a legal person or of other economic organisations enjoys a lawyer’s legal status. Constitutional complaints may be submitted only by those who are concerned in the case before courts or authorities.
2. Where to submit the petition?
Petitions for constitutional complaint – except for when rights are violated directly, without a judicial decision – have to be filed with the court of the first instance and addressed to the Constitutional Court. The court of first instance forwards the constitutional complaint to the Constitutional Court. The court may suspend the execution of the decision contested in the constitutional complaint until the Constitutional Court’s proceedings are concluded.
Exceptionally, the constitutional complaint may be submitted directly to the Constitutional Court if due to the application of a legal provision contrary to the Fundamental Law, or when such legal provision becomes effective, rights were violated directly, without a judicial decision, and there is no procedure for legal remedy designed to repair the violation of rights, or the petitioner has already exhausted the possibilities for remedy.
3. What should the petition contain?
The petition must contain an explicit request. A petition is explicit if it clearly indicates the provision of an Act that establishes the competence of the Constitutional Court to adjudicate the petition, and establishes that the entity has the right to submit petitions; the reasons for initiating the proceedings; the substance of the violation of the right guaranteed by the Fundamental Law; the provision of a legal regulation or the judicial decision to be examined by the Constitutional Court; the provisions of the Fundamental Law that are violated.
The petition shall contain also a reasoning that specifies why the contested legal regulation, the provision thereof, the judicial decision or the resolution of the Parliament is contrary to the specified provision of the Fundamental Law or the international treaty, as well as an explicit request for the annulment of the legal regulation, the provision thereof or the judicial decision, and a request for the content of the Constitutional Court’s decision.
The petitioner may repeatedly submit a petition with the same content only if the underlying grounds of the previous petition had changed significantly.
The petition of a constitutional complaint submitted to the Constitutional Court may be withdrawn.
4. What are the formal criteria of the petition?
The petition has to be submitted in written form and must be signed. It is not possible to proceed upon petitions submitted by e-mail.
The petition has to include the name and address or seat of the petitioner. In constitutional complaint proceedings, the petitioner shall make a declaration on the processing of his or her personal data.
The petitioner is obliged to certify the existence of the preconditions of the proceedings.
5. Are the proceedings free of charge?
The proceedings of the Constitutional Court are free of charge.
The petitioner has to bear his or her own costs incurred in the course of the Constitutional Court proceedings.