National Office for the Judiciary: judges are prepared for the new procedural codes
Judges are prepared for the enactment of new Civil and Administrative Procedural Acts entering into force on 1st January – said Judit Gyarmathy, vice-president of the National Office for the Judiciary, to the Hungarian Telegraphic Agency (MTI).
One of the important objectives of the new Codes is to make the Hungarian court proceedings more effective - which in general are not time consuming at all in comparison with the European ones - that supports the professional and well-founded judgement procedure. According to the survey, made by the European Commission this year considering the duration of lawsuits, Hungary is on the second place in the administrative branch, and takes the sixth place in the sphere of all civil cases among the 28 member states of the European Union - said the vice-president.
The timeliness of the civil cases will be supported e.g. by the fact, that the parties must „put their cards on the table” already in the beginning of the proceedings, they need to clarify the facts, underlying the trial, and neither their motives, nor their arguments can remain hidden. After the ending of preliminary period their factual and legal references essentially cannot be changed. In addition, contrary to the district courts, legal representation will be mandatory at the regional courts, which act in more complex cases.
The creating of the separate Administrative Litigation Act is a milestone in the Hungarian history of law. The new code guarantees a much more extensive legal defence by widening the administrative judicial way. Namely, up to the present, the courts acted in administrative cases could examine the legality of the decisions and orders made by administrative authorities – e.g. tax authority, local government – but from 1st January the actions of the public administration can be appealed in general at the court. The Act also provides new instruments to the courts in order that their judgements are really enforced by the public administration. For example the fulfilment fine, which can be imposed not only on the administrative body, but on its head as well - described Judit Gyarmathy.
In the proceedings starting from 1st January, electronic communication in all civil cases and in non-contentious proceedings is binding if the parties are represented by a legal counsel, and the same refers to all business entities. For example in the execution cases the application for execution can only be submitted in electronic way.
For the sake of the preparation for the new procedural acts, several tasks had to be carried out, such was the preparation of the judges to apply the new rules, furthermore, significant organizational restructuring were necessary in case of the Administrative Litigation Act – said the vice-president of the national administration of the judicial organization.
One of the biggest challenges for the judges is to follow the changing legal environment. Almost 160 acts, more than 500 government decrees and thousands of lower level legislation were created last year, which must be known by all the courts. Preparation for the smooth application of the new procedural acts is a substantial task, it is also a huge responsibility in order to maintain the rule of law – explained the vice-president.
It is also undeniable that the client can expect to recognize the judge among the participants of the hearing not only for the fact that he is sitting in his chair, but by his knowledge as well – added Judit Gyarmathy.
The vice-president of the National Office for the Judiciary also drew attention to the fact, that the civil procedural act lays down strict conditions to the participants of the procedure from filling of an application through the whole procedure. Mistakes, deficiencies can block the procedure for weeks, that is why it is important to get informed in advance for those who turn to the court next year.
The National Office for the Judiciary and the courts are seek to provide the necessary information about the new procedural acts to the public, using leaflets, internet, television, radio, printed and online press equally – said Judit Gyarmathy.