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2008 | 3(177) |

Article title

THE GUARANTEES OF FREEDOM OF THE JUDGE'S CONSCIENCE IN CIVIL LAW PROCEDURES (Gwarancje swobody sumienia sedziego w procesie cywilnym. Sumienie sedziego jako kategoria prawna)


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Judges are subordinated to the constitution and laws. Judges vow to administer justice not only according to law. They take an oath to administer justice according to their conscience. The conscience defines behavioral directives based on the category of 'good' and 'evil'. Conscience is a hypothetical ability or faculty that distinguishes whether our actions are right or wrong. There are seven guarantees of freedom of the judge's conscience in civil law procedures. First, judges are independent; they are subordinated only to the constitution and laws. Judges are privileged to immunity and cannot be dismissed. Second, Judges are obliged to implement the actions specified in the law, while following the principle of impartiality and equal treatment of all citizens, but they have the right to interpret legal regulations. Third, judicial discretion, vague terms, general clauses and decision margins allow for individual decisions. Fourth, evidence confirming facts in the case are evaluated in accordance with the principle of free evaluation of evidence. Fifth, the resolution of a case is not based on the mechanical deduction of consequences based on guidelines, being the general norms, but on the identification of an optimal solution. During the evidence hearing the judge considers and simultaneously determines which norms should be applied to the specific case and determines the legal grounds for the decision. Sixth, the judge has the right to 'votum separatum'. Finally, judges are not obliged to apply judgment. Judges have the freedom of thought and making decisions. The judge's decisions in every case can't be mechanical deductions. This is rather more like finding the best solution and conviction of the optimal, well- argued decision, justified by the applied legal regulations and the conscience. The conscience causes that the judge's verdicts are just and have human dimensions.



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  • Aneta Lazarska, no address given, contact the journal editor


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Publication order reference


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