The legislative framework and the practice of secondments, entailing the transfer of judges from one court to another, endangers the independence of Hungarian judges. Moreover, it may result in the violation of the right of parties to lawsuits to a fair hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal established by law.
Translation is available for this contentVáltás magyarra
Unlawful Judicial Appointments at the Kúria András Zs Varga, the President of the Kúria, Hungary’s supreme court, unlawfully appointed several judges to the bench in 2021. The National Judicial Council, the self-governing body of … Read more
Civil society organizations request the Minister of Justice to address problems of the Hungarian judiciary after conducting wide ranging consultations with the general public and with experts, including self-governing and representative organs of the judiciary … Read more
The European Commission’s 2022 Rule of Law Report, released on 13 July 2022, repeated the stark findings of previous years and found no progress as regards judicial independence in Hungary. Two out of the Commission’s … Read more
After the President of the Kúria, Hungary’s highest court, challenged the new Code of Ethics of the National Judicial Council before the Constitutional Court, four NGOs submitted a joint amicus curiae brief to the Constitutional Court to point out that the arguments of the President of the Kúria are unfounded, and to support the independence of Hungarian judges.
Our communications to the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe show that the independence and integrity of the judiciary in Hungary has been further weakened by the government, and Hungary has been failing to implement the European Court of Human Rights’ judgment in the Baka case.
The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) has delivered a major judgment on judicial independence. According to the CJEU, despite the fact that domestic law permits it, and that such a judgment has already been issued, only one forum can legally decide whether a Hungarian judge’s request for a preliminary ruling to the CJEU is inadmissible – and that is the CJEU itself. The Luxembourg-based Court also ruled that it was against EU law to discipline a national judge under domestic law because he had turned to the CJEU.
The Hungarian government may very well face firmer measures by the Council of Europe if it continues to fail to fully execute the judgment issued by the European Court of Human Rights in the Baka v. Hungary case. The Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe calls on Hungary to present the guarantees of the independence and freedom of expression of judges.
A Hungarian administrative judge was declared unsuitable and therefore forced by her boss to leave the bench in the course of her professional evaluation. In fact, the same judge was the one, who had sent a question to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) for a preliminary ruling because she believed the Hungarian asylum law might be in breach of the EU law.
The Hungarian government has for many years been reluctant to take any meaningful action to safeguard the freedom of expression and independence of Hungarian judges. The execution of the Baka v. Hungary judgment is going on since 2016, but the Hungarian state has not lifted a hand yet.
18 months have passed since the last hearing was held in the Article 7 procedure. During this time qualitative changes have occurred in the nature of the Hungarian illiberal regime. We look at some of the key issues today’s Article 7 hearing in the General Affairs Council should take into account.
The UN Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers considered the election of Justice András Zs. Varga as President of the Kúria as a measure hampering judicial independence.
The Advocate General of the Luxembourg-based Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) made it abundantly clear that only one forum can legally decide whether a Hungarian judge’s request for a preliminary ruling from the CJEU is inadmissible, and that is the CJEU itself. The opinion of the Advocate General directly affects both the applicability of EU law in Hungary and the independence of Hungarian judges.
András Patyi has become a Vice President of the Kúria (Supreme Court of Hungary) based on recommendation of the new Chief Justice recently elected against clear objection of judicial representatives. Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s loyal … Read more
A compilation prepared by the Hungarian Helsinki Committee of public statements, academic quotes, and decisions taken by the freshly appointed Chief Justice of Hungary mirror a person, who is perceivably loyal towards the ruling majority … Read more
The new chief judge in Hungary: a potential transmission belt of the executive within the judiciary The election of the new President of the Kúria (the Supreme Court of Hungary) is the next stage in … Read more
The Hungarian Government has failed to address in a satisfactory manner the concerns around the right to freedom of expression of Hungarian judges. Therefore, in its decision published today, the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe has not closed the supervision of the judgment delivered by the European Court of Human Rights in the Baka v. Hungary case, and requested the Hungarian authorities to submit an updated action plan.
A communication by the Hungarian Helsinki Committee and Amnesty International shows that due to the legal and institutional structures created by the governing majority, the chilling on the freedom of expression of judges effect is encoded in the Hungarian court system, and Hungary has failed to adopt guarantees to avoid retaliation against judges voicing criticism in relation to the independence of the judiciary.
The HHC’s new report shows how ruling party politicians have exerted undue influence on the judiciary in Hungary between 2010–2020, either by interfering in pending cases or undermining the credibility of judicial decisions, or by eroding public confidence in the judiciary as a whole.
A new law adopted on 17 December 2019 seems to be yet another attempt to make sure that politically sensitive court cases are decided in a way that is favourable for the executive power. It does not only make it possible to channel politically sensitive cases out of the ordinary court system, but also makes it harder in practice for individuals to enforce their rights vis a vis the state.
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