|Author (Corporate)||Cardiff EDC|
Reports and information relating to a set of infringement procedures launched by the European Commission against Poland over a series of amendments to legislative acts on the judiciary.
The law amending the acts governing the functioning of the justice system in Poland was adopted in December 2019 and entered into force in February 2020. The European Commission took the view that this law undermines the independence of Polish judges and is also incompatible with the primacy of EU law.
A Letter of Formal Notice was therefore issued against Poland regarding the law on the judiciary on 29 April 2020. In its reply, the Polish Government contested the reasoning and requested the discontinuation of the procedure. The Commission analyses the reply and argued it did not address the concerns expressed in the original Letter. On 30 October, the Commission moved to the second phase of the infringement procedure by sending a Reasoned Opinion. The national authorities were given two months to take the necessary measures to comply with the Opinion in order to avoid the case being referred to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU).
An additional Letter of Formal Notice was issued against Poland on 3 December 2020 regarding the functioning of the Disciplinary Chamber of the Supreme Court. The Commission argues that the Member State violates EU Law by allowing the Disciplinary Chamber of the Supreme Court to decide on further matters which directly affect judges. It is considered that independence and impartiality of that Chamber cannot be guaranteed. By giving the Disciplinary Chamber powers that directly affect the status of judges and the exercise of their judicial activities, the Polish legislation is seen to jeopardise the ability of the respective courts to provide an effective remedy. On 27 January 2021, the Commission decided to issue a Reasoned Opinion as it considered the reply sent by national authorities not to address the concerns.
The second infringement procedure complements the first one without replacing it.
|Subject Categories||Justice and Home Affairs, Law|
|Subject Tags||Judicial Reform, National Law | Legal Systems, Rule of Law|
|Countries / Regions||Poland|
|International Organisations||European Union [EU]|