The Constitutional Court
On behalf of the United States
The Constitutional Court ruled the day 3. July 2000 on the proposal for the City Court
Brno, Czech Republic for annulment of the provision of Section 4a of the Act No. 237/1995 Coll., on salary and
other elements linked to the exercise of the functions of the representatives of the State
power and some State authorities and judges, as amended by law no 287/1997
The proposal is rejected.
The Constitutional Court has received 23 July. September 1999, design by the municipal court in Brno
repeal of Act No. 285/1997 Coll. supplementing Act No. 237/1995
Coll., on salary and other terms associated with the performance of the functions
representatives of State power and some State authorities and judges in
amended by Act No. 135/1996.
President of the Chamber. Eva Gottwaldová this acting for the municipal court
Brno pursuant to § 30 para. 3 of Act No. 182/1993 Coll., on the Constitutional Court, (hereinafter referred to
"the law on the Constitutional Court") said that pursuant to § 109 paragraph. 1 (b). (b))
the second and third sentence of the code of civil procedure was interrupted by an action
judge of the Supreme Court demanding the payment of 62 000 CZK
Accessories, which should be paid in January 1998 as an additional
the salary for the second half of 1997, pursuant to section 4 of Act No. 237/1995 Coll. in
as a result of the amendment to the Act No. 283/1997 Coll., this amount shall be paid to him
He has not been on her claim.
The law, which should be used in solving the case, it is referred to in
the opinion of the applicant in breach of constitutional law, according to the article. 95 para. 2
The Constitution of the United States, has submitted a case after interruption of proceedings Constitutional
the Court. The municipal court in Brno, complains that the contested Law of its
retroaktivnost, which should result in a violation of the principle of legal certainty and the
the protection of the citizens ' confidence in the law. It is based on the claim of the plaintiff, that he
eligible for additional salary for the second half of 1997 when the conditions
set out in section 4, paragraph 4. 2 Act No. 237/1995 Coll. was already 29 June.
September 1997 and that no other law cannot be disturbed once acquired
claim. There has been a serious infringement of this article. 1, art. 4 and article. 28 of the Charter
fundamental rights and freedoms.
As the proposal complies with the formal requirements of an application for annulment of the Act and
has been made according to § 64 para. 4 of the law on the Constitutional Court, the Constitutional Court
requested from both chambers of the Czech Parliament comments on the proposal.
In the Chamber of Deputies, signed by the President Prof. Ing.
Václav Klaus, CSc., stated: Act No. 287/1997 Coll. amending
Act No. 237/1995 Coll., section 4 of the governing other salary
leaders and judges the following new Section 4a, where it is stipulated that the
officials and judges for more pay for the second half of 1997 does not belong.
According to law No. 237/1995 Coll. additional salary representatives and judges belongs
If a representative or a judge in the calendar half-year, actually
its function has pursued at least 90 calendar days, and if the performance of this
the features in the first half of the calendar year end leaders prior to the
on 31 December 2007. may and the judges before the date 30. in the second half of June and
calendar year performance will not end before the date of 30 representatives.
November and the judges before the date of 31. December. Eligible for additional salary for
calendar semester of the fulfillment of the two conditions arises. Act No.
287/1997 Coll., laying down that the officials or judges for more salary per second
half of 1997 does not belong, came into effect on the date of publication, i.e.. 28.
November 1997, prior to the fulfilment of the other conditions. Out of it
It follows that the right to salary for the second half of 1997 did not arise,
and therefore, this law could not retroactively affect the acquired rights. Act No.
287/1997 Coll. has been approved by the required majority of members, signed
respective constitutional factors and properly declared in the collection of laws. In
the conclusion of his observations of the President of the Chamber of Deputies stated that
the legislature acted in the belief that the law is adopted in accordance with the
The Constitution, the constitutional order of the Czech Republic and our legal order, and that the
It is up to the Constitutional Court to examine the constitutionality of the contested act.
President Of The Chamber, PhDr. Libuše Benešová in its observations
zrekapitulovala the course of the legislative process. It stated that if the
Act No. 285/1997 raised its retroactivity, in this direction
the design is not well-founded. Also, if this law is considered
the perspective of respecting the constitutional principle of judicial independence is the
the place to comment on this issue already on the grounds that it was not
option in the case of representation given to the proposal for the repeal of the law No.
268/1998 Coll., on the withdrawal of the additional salary for the second half of 1998
officials and some government agencies, judges,
prosecutors and members of the Presidium of the Securities and Exchange Commission, in which the
the appellant was also attacked by only its retroactivity. You will not be
Certainly, disputed that the principle of the independence of judges includes a
a number of aspects, which can be sorted and material security of judges. However, it is on
the place to point out that this material security is done mainly
in the form of a regular monthly salary, the amount and the conditions for and
This cash with no restrictions on does not touch. Yet even in the
European Commission evaluation report on the Czech Republic it was stated that
"the salaries of judges are relatively high", while in other areas, for example.
as regards the police and administrative structures, it was as a persistent
the problem highlighted the low level of salaries. These aspects are strongly
seen our public.
Additional salary is according to the legal provisions, a single monetary
provided under the specified conditions once each calendar half-year,
and from the conditions of eligibility, when one of them is the duration of the
the working relationship of the judge on the last day of the calendar half-year,
It appears that this Act can hardly be treated as material
ensure the judges, whose reduction or withdrawal could have the effect of
breach of the principle of the independence of judges. The law was challenged by the Senate
approved by all present. To represent the Senate was accompanied by an even
těsnopisecká report of the meetings of the Senate, when presenting the Bill
No 287/1997. it was noted that when adopting the stability and
adjustment measures of the Government, it was decided that the workers in the
the budget and certain other organisations and bodies, who are
be remunerated pursuant to Act No. 143/1992 Coll., on salary and remuneration for work
stand-by in budgetary and certain other organizations and bodies
Hess additional salary for the second half of this year. A similar provision
It was recently approved in the approval of the law on salaries of State
representatives. Proponents of that law had considered that it is right to
similar adequate adjustment was performed and for those people that are from
State funds paid pursuant to Act No. 237/1995 Coll., Such
the adjustment is moral, and it's about to virtually all who are
remunerated from public funds, were on it this year as well.
The Constitutional Court is not bound by the grounds, but only Petite administered
the proposal to assess and ensure compliance with other constitutional
standards and principles. In this context, in particular, could not overlook, that
findings published under no. 233/1999 Coll. as unconstitutional set aside the part of the
a similar law (No. 268/1998 Coll.), in relation to the judges
General courts, and even in this case, therefore, had to address the issue of whether the
the contested act is not inconsistent with the constitutionally guaranteed by principles
the democratic rule of law and judicial independence as a constitutional
the Court found in that case. From this perspective, the Constitutional Court
He came to the following conclusions.
Judicial independence is one of the fundamental democratic
values, and to the attainment of this independence certainly helps and material
the security of judges. In particular, it is essential that the judicial compensation
It was not by the other components of State authority interfered with arbitrarily,
repeatedly and in any form. Therefore, the Constitutional Court focused (in accordance
with the decision-making practice of the European Court of human rights) to the question whether
the contested intervention into the guaranteed rights (IE. in this case, the withdrawal of the so-called. 14.
the salary of judges of general courts) 1. was established by law 2. pointing to the
the legitimate aim pursued, and 3. was necessary in a democratic society.
1. The first question it is possible to conclude that the legal form of intervention is met
was. Navrhovatelovy are unfounded objections that the law is
retroactive, since in the present case, the situation is comparable to findings
published under no. 233/1999 Coll., in which the Constitutional Court the question of the
a similar law already adequately-retroactivity, and in that
the case therefore have no choice but to refer to this finding. The Constitutional Court further
notes that the terms of the Constitution-is not relevant
the fact that in the present case there was an adoption of the contested act
differences in legislative form, IE. amendment to the relevant law on the
Apart from the adoption of a separate law. While it is true that
constitutional is preferable, though-just so "sensitive" areas, such as
the containment of the material benefits of judges-law occurs
the original, which provides the salary and other essentials of judges, and therefore it is
the systematic solution than when it is received by a separate law that
his ad hoc interfered in the matter of the law of another. However, from the
This difference in terms of the Constitution itself does not have a decisive
the importance of.
In this respect, therefore, the application for annulment of the Act is not justified,
as to the contested intervention there has been a statutory form.
2. The second question is whether the contested act is pointing to the legitimate aim pursued,
that is,. whether the withdrawal of the so-called. 14. the salaries of the judges of the ordinary courts was in
the present period is legitimate.
In this context, the Constitutional Court could not depart from social and
the economic reality of the Czech Republic, which at the time of the adoption of this
the law was in a difficult economic and social situation, which in their
the consequences also led to the abolition of the so-called. 14. civil servants ' salaries (though
a slightly different form than in the constitutional factors) and also to the withdrawal of the so-called. 14.
salary of constitutional officials. In terms of the legitimacy of the goals, therefore, Constitutional Court
is of the opinion that neither the judges of general courts are not in a
"legal and economic vacuum" that would make them completely from the surrounding
the economic and social reality. Therefore, you cannot categorically say that
judges of general courts have preconceived right to such material
security cannot be the legislative form in any way, and for the
no circumstances changed.
In finding an established under Act No. 231/1999 Coll., the Constitutional Court declared that
the State is obliged to create the institutional prerequisites for fair
the independence of the courts and to stabilize their position in relation to
legislation and the Executive branch. The courts must carry out their tasks and duties
in particular in the area of the rights and freedoms of man and citizen, with these principles
shall not be undermined or legislative means. The Constitutional Court on this
the fundamental basis has not changed anything. In the case in question was the procedure
the legislature shall affect the material provision of the whole public sphere (and with it the
regard to the relationship of Act No 236/1995 Coll. and act
No 143/1992 Coll.), and not only the judges. Different assessment of only one
the group, though increasingly protected the constitutional principle of kautelami
independence would be hardly acceptable in that context
advantage. Each time the legislative intervention into the material
the security of judges is therefore necessary consistently to respect fundamental
principles of material law and value orientation of the constitutional
order of the Czech Republic. In particular, this intervention must not occur as a result of
arbitrariness or a violation of the principle of legal certainty. In such a case, it would
apparently there was a breach of the legitimacy of the objective pursued.
However, in this respect, it is necessary to see the difference in the situation of both
the aforementioned cases. If in the case of the award of the declared under no.
233/1999 Coll., the Constitutional Court ruled in a situation where the intervention of the
the independence of judges was contested legislative act of the immediate and
to date, in compliance with the proposal on the matter would in effect mean
the granting of the relevant material benefits with more than two-year
delay (when even the plaintiff before the municipal court in Brno has filed its proposal
more than a year after the contested act came into effect) and cancellation
the contested law to protect judicial independence would be of
at the most problematic aspects of the Constitution. The Constitutional Court in the
their activities must seek effective protection of constitutionality and for this
annulment of the contested act, the situation was obviously inefficient and neplnilo
would adequately the purpose that the Constitutional Court declared in the award
an established under Act No. 231/1999 Coll.
The Constitutional Court notes that in the present case did not find a contradiction between the
the legitimacy of the objective pursued and the contested intervention and that the law in question
even from this perspective is not unconstitutional.
3. the third aspect, which is the Constitutional Court, was assessing whether the
the contested Law was a necessary measure in a democratic society. It
means that the Constitutional Court had to focus on the question of whether to reference
the legitimate aim pursued could not be reached in any other way than the adoption of this
the law. In Mr. things Constitutional Court found that the chosen solution-through
all-reservations cannot be considered unconstitutional even
Therefore, it would not constitute a measure in a democratic society
necessary. The contested Law, namely of all these reasons not to
the threat of institutional assumptions for the real independence of the courts and
It cannot be characterized as either arbitrary act of the legislature. The constitutional
the Court in carrying out its tasks, must consider even the intensity of intervention to
the fundamental principles of constitutionality and challenged the law as unconstitutional
derogovat only if it concludes that the rate of neústavnosti
the contested law violates basic constitutional principles in real terms. To such
the conclusion, however, in the present case, the Constitutional Court has to grow up.
The Constitutional Court's approach to the law in the case of cancellation,
If it finds that the benefits resulting from the derogations prevails over
unwanted consequences arising from it, and then proceed according to the principle
adequacy in material law. Even in this respect, the constitutional
the Court reason for the annulment of the contested act did not.
The President of the Constitutional Court:
in the z.. Haboob in r.
Different opinions under section 14 of Act No. 182/1993 Coll., on the Constitutional Court,
the decision of the plenum have been judges. Vladimír Čermák, JUDr. Vladimir
Paul, JUDr. Vlastimil Sevcik and JUDr. Eva Zarembová and its justification
judges JUDr. Pavel Holländer, JUDr. Ivana Janů and JUDr. Jiří Malenovský.