Organisation of justice – judicial systems
Exercise of judicial power
Judicial power in Slovakia is exercised by ordinary courts and the Constitutional Court of the Slovak Republic (Ústavný súd Slovenskej republiky).
Judicial power in Slovakia is exercised by independent and impartial courts. Judicial power at all levels is exercised separately from other State bodies.
The president of a court is responsible for the exercise of judicial power.
Administration of courts
The administration of courts in Slovakia is handled, to the extent laid down by law, by the Slovak Ministry of Justice and the president of the court, who is also the statutory body of the court. To the extent laid down by law, court administration is also handled by the court’s administrative director and the Judicial Council of the Slovak Republic.
Types of courts – brief description
System of ordinary courts
- district courts (okresné súdy) (54)
- regional courts (krajské súdy) (8)
- Supreme Court of the Slovak Republic (Najvyšší súd Slovenskej republiky)
- Specialised Criminal Court (Špecializovaný trestný súd)
Hierarchy of courts
Pursuant to Act No 757/2004 on courts and amending certain other acts, as amended:
- District courts act as courts of first instance in civil and criminal cases, unless otherwise stipulated by rules governing court proceedings.
- District courts also hear electoral cases, where stipulated by specific legal provisions.
- Regional courts act as courts of second instance in civil and criminal cases heard in the first instance by district courts.
- Rules governing court proceedings specify the types of civil and criminal cases in which regional courts act as courts of first instance.
- Regional courts act as courts of first instance in administrative cases, except where stipulated by specific legal provisions.
- Regional courts also hear other cases, where stipulated by specific legal provisions (e.g. Act No 166/2003 on the protection of privacy against unauthorised use of information technology and amending certain other acts, and the Act on protection against the interception of communications).
- The Supreme Court has jurisdiction in:
- ordinary appeals against decisions by regional courts and the Specialised Criminal Court;
- extraordinary appeals against decisions by district courts, regional courts, the Specialised Criminal Court and the Supreme Court;
- reassignment of cases to a court other than the competent court, where provided by the rules governing court proceedings;
- other cases, where provided by law or international treaty.
The Supreme Court reviews decisions taken by courts in cases where final judgment has been given.
The Supreme Court oversees the uniform interpretation and consistent application of laws and other acts of general application:
- through its own decision-making;
- by issuing opinions aimed at unifying the interpretation of laws and other acts of general application;
- by publishing final court decisions of key significance in the Reports of Opinions of the Supreme Court and Decisions of the Courts of the Slovak Republic.
Further information can be found on the website of the Ministry of Justice of the Slovak Republic.
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