About the CourtLegal BasisThe Rules of ProcedureVII. CONSIDERATION AND DECIDING

VII. CONSIDERATION AND DECIDING


1. The Order of Precedence for Considering Cases

Article 46
(The Order of Precedence)

(1) As a general rule, the Constitutional Court considers cases in accordance with the order of their receipt.

(2) The Constitutional Court considers the following types of cases as priority cases:
– cases which the court must consider and decide rapidly in accordance with the regulations that apply on the basis of the CCA;
– cases in which a court has adjourned proceedings and required the review of the constitutionality of a law;
– cases for which a law determines a time limit within which the Constitutional Court must consider and decide a case;
– jurisdictional disputes.

(3) The Constitutional Court may decide to consider the following types of cases as priority cases:
– simpler cases which can be considered and decided in the examination procedure phase or in the preparatory procedure phase;
– cases which concern the resolution of an important legal question;
– in other instances when the Constitutional Court so decides.

(4) If a participant in proceedings motions for priority consideration, the Constitutional Court decides thereon if so proposed by the judge rapporteur or another Constitutional Court judge.

(5) The cases referred to in the second and third paragraphs of this article are as a general rule considered according to the order of precedence of equal priority cases; if there exist especially substantiated circumstances, the Constitutional Court can decide otherwise.

2. Reports of Judge Rapporteurs

Article 47
(Reports)

(1) The Constitutional Court decides on a case which is the subject of proceedings at a session on the basis of the written or oral report of the judge rapporteur or on the basis of a submitted draft decision or order.

(2) If the judge rapporteur assesses that a case is more demanding or if such is required by any Constitutional Court judge at a session, a written report of the case is drawn up. In the event of such, the report comprises whatever is necessary for the Constitutional Court to decide, e.g. a review of whether the procedural requirements have been fulfilled, a presentation of previous relevant constitutional case law, a comparative survey of relevant constitutional reviews or reviews by international courts, other comparative-law information, a presentation of foreign and domestic legal theory, selected preparatory materials for the Constitution and the challenged regulations, and arguments in favour and against possible solutions.

(3) The report may also contain a proposal that a public hearing be called or a proposal on the partial or complete exclusion of the public from a hearing; in the event a matter is considered at a session, as a general rule the draft decision or order of the case is also enclosed with the report.

3. The Joinder or Severance of Cases

Article 48
(Joinder)

If in their applications more than one applicant requests the review of the constitutionality or legality of the same provisions or provisions related in terms of content of a law, regulation, or general act issued for the exercise of public authority, the Constitutional Court may, upon the proposal of the judge rapporteur, decide by an order to join all applications for joint consideration and deciding on their constitutionality or legality.

Article 49
(Severance)

(1) If an application contains a proposal for the review of the constitutionality or legality of the provisions of two or more laws, regulations, or general acts issued for the exercise of public authority, but their joint consideration is not necessary or reasonable, the Constitutional Court may, upon the proposal of the judge rapporteur, decide by an order to separate the application for separate consideration and deciding on their constitutionality or legality.

(2) An application so separated may be entered as an independent case, or may be joined with another case if the requirements referred to in the preceding article are met.

Article 50
(Petitions and Constitutional Complaints)
 
If a constitutional complaint also contains a petition to initiate proceedings for the review of the constitutionality or legality of regulations or general acts issued for the exercise of public authority, the application is classified and treated as a petition and as a constitutional complaint.

4. Public Hearings

Article 51
(The Calling of Public Hearings)

(1) Public hearings are called by the President.

(2) Participants in proceedings are invited to a hearing by a written summons such that they receive the summons as a general rule eight days prior to the hearing. In certain cases the President may order a shorter time limit.

(3) A copy of the application and a copy of any replies to the application and other necessary documents are enclosed with the summons if these materials have not already been sent to the participant in proceedings during preparatory procedure.

(4) In addition to the participants in proceedings, the Constitutional Court may also decide to summons other persons to attend public hearings if they might contribute to the resolution of a matter which is the subject of the proceedings. In such a case, the judge rapporteur also decides which parts of the case file are to be sent to these persons together with the summons.

Article 52
(The Course of Public Hearings)

(1) At the beginning of public hearings, the President informs all present of the case which is the subject of the public hearing, establishes if all those summoned are present, instructs the participants in proceedings to limit their statements to only what has not already been submitted to the Constitutional Court in their applications, and notifies them of the provision of Article 28 of these Rules of Procedure.

(2) If a hearing or a part of a hearing is not public, the President declares this at the beginning of the hearing, or at the beginning of that part which is not public.

(3) In justified instances, particularly when it is necessary to take evidence, the Constitutional Court may adjourn a public hearing and reschedule it for a new date, or it may stay the hearing.

(4) In order to maintain order during public hearings, the provisions which govern civil procedures are applied mutatis mutandis.

Article 53
(Deliberation and Voting)

The deliberation and voting on the decision of a case that is the subject of a public hearing is carried out at a closed session. Only those Constitutional Court judges who were present at the public hearing cast votes.

Article 54
(Pronouncing Decisions)

(1) When a decision is pronounced orally, the President pronounces the operative provisions of the decision or the order, and the judge rapporteur states the main reasons for the decision adopted.

(2) The oral pronouncement of the operative provisions of a decision or an order is always made in public.

5. Sessions

Article 55
(The Calling of Sessions)

(1) Sessions of the Constitutional Court are called by the President in accordance with the work schedule of the Constitutional Court.

(2) In accordance with the second paragraph of Article 11 of these Rules of Procedure, sessions of the Constitutional Court are called once a week, unless the work schedule or a Constitutional Court order provides otherwise.

Article 56
(Correspondence Sessions)

(1) If the judge rapporteur does not propose otherwise, the Constitutional Court considers proposals for the temporary suspension of the implementation of laws, regulations, and general acts issued for the exercise of public authority in a manner such that the judge rapporteur submits a report and a draft decision to the other Constitutional Court judges. The Constitutional Court may decide that it will also decide other types of cases in the same manner.

(2) If none of the Constitutional Court judges declares his opposition to the draft decision within eight days or within a time limit determined by an order of the Constitutional Court, such decision is adopted.

(3) If any Constitutional Court judge declares his opposition to the draft decision within the time limit referred to in the preceding paragraph, deciding on the draft decision is placed on the agenda of the next session.
Article 57
(The Agenda)

(1) The proposed agenda, together with the materials prepared for the session, must be delivered to the Constitutional Court judges together with announcement calling the session at least five days before the session.

(2) In exceptional instances, if the judge rapporteur decides that a case is urgent or must be resolved within a prescribed time limit, it may be placed on the agenda without the materials or with incomplete materials.

(3) At a session the President or a judge of the Constitutional Court may propose that a case be placed on the agenda or withdrawn from the agenda.

(4) If an urgent session is called which is not envisaged in the work schedule, the agenda may be proposed and the materials delivered at the session.

Article 58
(Participation at Sessions)

(1) In addition to the President and judges of the Constitutional Court, the Secretary General is present at sessions.

(2) The advisors of the Constitutional Court who have been assigned a case and other advisors who are selected by the President or the judge rapporteur are also present at the session at particular items of the agenda.

Article 59
(Presiding Over and Determining the Agenda)

(1) Sessions of the Constitutional Court are presided over by the President, who is also responsible for maintaining order.

(2) The President first establishes the attendance at the session and if there is a quorum.

(3) After the quorum has been established, the proposed agenda of the session is decided upon. The Constitutional Court first decides upon proposals to withdraw cases from the agenda, then upon proposals to add items to the agenda, and finally upon proposals to change the order of precedence regarding the consideration of cases. The Constitutional Court decides upon proposals by a majority vote of judges present.

(4) After the decisions referred to in the preceding paragraph of this article have been reached, the President submits the entire proposal of the agenda to a vote. The Constitutional Court decides on the agenda by a majority vote of judges present.

Article 60
(Consideration)

(1) At the beginning of the consideration of each item on the agenda, the President allows the judge rapporteur to speak, and then other Constitutional Court judges, moving clockwise, such that the judge sitting to the left of the judge rapporteur follows first. The President speaks after all other judges have stated their opinion on the matter; the President may then allow the Secretary General and, upon the proposal of the judge rapporteur, the advisor present at particular items of the agenda to speak.

(2) The President allows the following to speak during discussions: Constitutional Court judges, the Secretary General, and advisors, in an order of precedence in accordance with the order they requested to speak, whereby the President and judges of the Constitutional Court have precedence.

(3) Those who have requested to speak have, as a general rule, the right to speak only once in a discussion. They may speak only about matters which concern an item on the agenda. If they do not follow this rule, the President may, after giving them a warning, require them to stop speaking. A Constitutional Court judge may, however, object to being required to stop speaking. The Constitutional Court decides on such an objection immediately and without discussion, by a majority vote of judges present.

(4) Upon the proposal of the President or any other judge of the Constitutional Court, the Constitutional Court may limit the time for Constitutional Court judges to discuss an individual issue.

(5) When the President establishes that there are no further requests to speak, he concludes the discussion.

Article 61
(Deciding)

(1) After the discussion of an item on the agenda is concluded the President submits the proposed decision to a vote.

(2) The vote may be either preliminary or final. In a preliminary vote, a Constitutional Court judge may abstain from voting, but if he votes he is not bound by his vote in the final vote.

(3) A final vote may be carried out only on a draft decision or a draft order which includes the operative provisions and its full reasoning, except in cases when the Constitutional Court pronounces its decision orally, immediately after the conclusion of a hearing.

Article 62
(Circulation before Redaction)

(1) The Constitutional Court may exceptionally decide that a final vote also be carried out on a draft decision or a draft order which includes the operative provisions if it follows from the discussion that a majority of the Constitutional Court judges who are in favour of the decision propose changes to the reasoning which exceed the powers of the Redaction Commission.

(2) In the instances referred to in the preceding paragraph, the Constitutional Court determines one or more Constitutional Court judges to prepare the reasoning. The reasoning of a decision or order so prepared is distributed to all Constitutional Court judges in order to enable them to state their positions thereon (circulation before redaction). Within three days of receiving the reasoning, each Constitutional Court judge may propose that the case be reconsidered by the Constitutional Court at another session.

(3) If, within the time limit referred to in the preceding paragraph, none of the Constitutional Court judges disagrees with the reasoning, the Redaction Commission prepares the final text of the decision or order on the basis of this reasoning.

Article 63
(Staying, Adjourning, and Concluding Sessions)

(1) The President may stay a session and determine when to continue it.

(2) If the Constitutional Court does not conclude the discussion of an item on the agenda, or if the conditions for reaching a decision are not fulfilled, the Constitutional Court may decide by a majority vote of the judges present to adjourn the decision on such to a later session.

(3) The President concludes a session when all items on the agenda have been addressed.

6. The Minutes

Article 64
(The Minutes)

(1) Minutes of the sessions of the Constitutional Court are taken by the Secretary General.

(2) The operative provisions of a decision or an order are entered into the minutes of a session of the Constitutional Court. The result of the vote is also entered such that the names of the Constitutional Court judges who voted against the adopted decision and the names of the Constitutional Court judges who have declared that they will write separate opinions are entered into the minutes. Procedural and other orders are also entered into the minutes, as well as other notes upon the [adopted] proposal of a Constitutional Court judge. If the proposal for an entry into the minutes is not adopted, Constitutional Court judges have the right to attach their written declarations regarding such to the minutes.

(3) The minutes of a session of the Constitutional Court are signed by the President and the recording secretary. The President signs the minutes when they are confirmed.

(4) The minutes are as a general rule submitted for confirmation at the next session of the Constitutional Court. A correction of the minutes is recorded in the minutes of the session at which the minutes are confirmed, and an official note with the contents of the correction is attached.

(5) The provision of the second paragraph of this article also applies to minutes of the procedure for the taking of evidence and other actions in the preparatory procedure, unless the judge rapporteur decides that only a note should be made of this.

7. Decisions and Orders

Article 65
(Drafts)

(1) The draft of the text of a decision or an order is as a general rule submitted to the Constitutional Court by the judge rapporteur. Each Constitutional Court judge may submit their proposals of the decision for consideration at a session.

(2) If a case was considered at a public hearing, but the Constitutional Court did not decide on it immediately, the draft decision or order is submitted to the Constitutional Court judges at least five days before the day on which the session for deliberation and voting is called.

(3) If the draft decision or order of the judge rapporteur is not accepted, the Constitutional Court may, upon his proposal, determine as judge rapporteur a different Constitutional Court judge.

Article 66
(Contents)

(1) Decisions and orders contain the introduction, the operative provisions, the statement of reasons, the statement of the legal basis for deciding, and the statement of the composition of the Constitutional Court which reached the decision, unless the law provides otherwise.

(2) The introduction of a decision or order states in which proceedings the decision was adopted, the names of the applicants, petitioners, or constitutional complainants, and their representatives and persons authorised by them, and the date of the public hearing, if such was held, and the date of the session at which the decision was adopted.

(3) The operative provisions contain the decision on the commencement of proceedings, the decision on the review of the regulation or general or individual act that was the subject of the review, the decision on the manner of the implementation of the decision or the order, and the decision on the costs of proceedings, if such were claimed by a participant in proceedings.

(4) The statement of reasons contains a summary of the allegations of the participants in proceedings and the reasons for the decision of the Constitutional Court.

(5) If the statement of reasons of a decision or order refers to reasons included in a prior decision or order which was not published, it is attached to the decision served on the participants in proceedings.

(6) The statement of the composition of the Constitutional Court which adopted the decision or order also states the results of the vote and the names of the Constitutional Court judges who voted against the decision, the names of the Constitutional Court judges who submitted separate opinions, and the names of the Constitutional Court judges who were disqualified from deciding.

Article 67
(Redaction)

The final text of a decision or order adopted at a session of the Constitutional Court is edited by the Redaction Commission within seven days at the latest from the day of its adoption or from the expiry of the time limit referred to in the second paragraph of Article 62 of these Rules of Procedure.

Article 68
(Revoting)

(1) Until a decision or order is sent [to the participants in proceedings], each Constitutional Court judge may propose in writing that the decision or order be decided on again at a session of the Constitutional Court (revoting). Such proposal suspends the process of sending the decision or order.

(2) For a decision or order to be decided on again, the proposal on such must be decided first. If the proposal is accepted, revoting on the already adopted decision is carried out after discussion of the reasons for a different decision. If this is not possible, the procedure for deciding again is adjourned.

Article 69
(The Publication and Serving of Decisions)

(1) It is within the competence of the Secretary General to organise the publication and serving of decisions and orders.

(2) The decisions of the Constitutional Court become public when a decision or an order is sent to the participants in proceedings, and in constitutional complaint cases, when a decision or an order is served on the complainant.

(3) Irrespective of the provision of the preceding paragraph, decisions of the Constitutional Court become public by public pronouncement.

(4) An order on the temporary suspension of the implementation of statutory provisions, regulations, or general acts issued for the exercise of public authority is published in the Official Gazette of the Republic of Slovenia and in the official publication in which the respective regulation or the general act issued for the exercise of public authority was published.

(5) Decisions or orders adopted in proceedings instituted upon a constitutional complaint and decisions in jurisdictional disputes are published in the Official Gazette of the Republic of Slovenia if so decided by the Constitutional Court.

(6) If the Constitutional Court decides that personal data are not to be stated in a published decision or order, the names and the places referred to in the decision or order are replaced with fictitious initials.

(7) Decisions and orders which are published in the Official Gazette of the Republic of Slovenia are also published on the website of the Constitutional Court, as are other decisions and orders by which proceedings are concluded, except for orders which only include a reason for the decision.

Article 70
(The Correction of Inaccuracies)

(1) Inaccuracies in decisions and orders adopted at sessions are corrected by an order issued by the President. The order on the correction is written at the end of the original decision or order; the participants in proceedings are served the order on the correction.

(2) If such a decision or order has already been published, the order on the correction
is published in the same manner.

8. Separate Opinions

Article 71
(Type and Purpose)

(1) A Constitutional Court judge who does not agree with a decision adopted at a session of the Constitutional Court may submit a separate opinion, which may be either a dissenting opinion if he disagrees with the operative provisions or a concurring opinion if he disagrees with the statement of reasons. A separate opinion may be submitted by a group of judges, or a Constitutional Court judge may join the separate opinion of another Constitutional Court judge.

(2) A separate opinion may only be submitted by a Constitutional Court judge who has declared after the voting on the decision that he will submit such opinion. Joining a separate opinion is possible also without prior declaration thereof.

(3) The purpose of a separate opinion is to present the arguments that the Constitutional Court judge stated in the discussion and deciding on a case and which dictated his decision.

Article 72
(Time Limit for the Submission of Separate Opinions)

(1) Separate opinions must be submitted within seven days from the day when the Constitutional Court judges receive the text of the decision determined by the Redaction Commission, which is confirmed and signed by the Secretary General.

(2) The Constitutional Court may determine a time limit for submitting separate opinions which is shorter or longer than seven days if so required by the nature of the matter decided on. Immediately after the final vote, the Constitutional Court decides on the extension or reduction of such time limit by a majority vote of the Constitutional Court judges present.

(3) Separate opinions are submitted to other Constitutional Court judges, who may comment on such within three days. A Constitutional Court judge who has submitted a separate opinion may reply to such comments within three days.

(4) If a separate opinion is not submitted within the time limit referred to in the first or second paragraphs, it is deemed that the Constitutional Court judge is not submitting a separate opinion.

Article 73
(Serving and Publication)

(1) A separate opinion is sent together with the decision or order to which the separate opinion refers. If, in accordance with an order of the Constitutional Court, the decision or order is sent immediately, the section stating the composition states which Constitutional Court judges have declared that they would write a separate opinion; the separate opinions are then sent after the expiry of the time limits referred to in the preceding article.

(2) If a decision or an order is published in the Collected Decisions and Orders of the Constitutional Court, on the website of the Constitutional Court, or in other computer databases, separate opinions thereto are published with the decision or order.

Article 74
(Press Release)

(1) If the Constitutional Court decides that it will issue a press release following the adoption of a decision, the text of such is prepared by the judge rapporteur.

(2) The draft press release is submitted to the Constitutional Court judges, who may comment on the draft within a time limit of three days or within a shorter time limit, if the Constitutional Court so decides. If any Constitutional Court judge does not agree with the contents of the draft press release, the Constitutional Court decides on the text thereof at a session.

(3) The final text of a press release is determined by the Redaction Commission, and signed by the President.

9. Panels

Article 75
(The Application of the Provisions of the Rules of Procedure)

(1) The provisions of these Rules of Procedure which refer to consideration and deciding apply, mutatis mutandis, also to the work and deciding of panels, unless these Rules of Procedure determine otherwise.

(2) In constitutional complaint cases, upon the proposal of the judge rapporteur or any other Constitutional Court judge, a panel decides on priority consideration in accordance with the third paragraph of Article 46 of these Rules of Procedure.

(3) The president of the panel, or in the event of his absence or disqualification, the Constitutional Court judge who is presiding over the panel, signs panel orders. The rules determining which member of the panel is to preside over the panel are determined by the Constitutional Court by the work schedule.

Article 76
(Panel Sessions)

(1) A panel decides whether the conditions for the acceptance and consideration of a constitutional complaint determined by law are fulfilled and on other questions so determined by the CCA and these Rules of Procedure.

(2) The manner of deciding referred to in the preceding paragraph is carried out by means of a correspondence session on the basis of the submitted report unless the judge rapporteur proposes otherwise. A panel order is adopted by means of a correspondence session if all members of the panel are in favour of such.

(3) A member of a panel may request that a constitutional complaint be considered at a session of the panel before deciding whether it should be accepted for consideration.

Article 77
(Circulation After a Panel Session)

(1) If the members of a panel do not agree whether the reasons referred to in the first paragraph of Article 55b of the CCA exist, the constitutional complaint is submitted to the Constitutional Court judges who are not members of the panel in order for them to decide thereon. If all Constitutional Court judges decide on such reasons regarding the constitutional complaint, and at least five vote for its rejection, the order on the rejection of the constitutional complaint may be sent before the expiry of the time limit referred to in the second paragraph of Article 55c of the CCA.

(2) If the members of the panel do not agree whether the conditions referred to in the second paragraph of Article 55b of the CCA exist, the constitutional complaint is submitted to the Constitutional Court judges who are not members of the panel in order for them to decide thereon.

(3) If in the case referred to in the preceding paragraph, all Constitutional Court judges decide on such conditions regarding the constitutional complaint and three Constitutional Court judges do not decide in favour of its acceptance, the order on the non-acceptance of the constitutional complaint may be sent before the expiry of the time limit referred to in the third paragraph of Article 55c of the CCA.

(4) Orders adopted in accordance with the proceedings referred to in this article are signed by the President.

Article 78
(The Disqualification of a Constitutional Court Judge)

If a constitutional complainant motions for the disqualification of a Constitutional Court judge who is not a member of the panel deciding on the constitutional complaint, the Constitutional Court decides on the motion for the disqualification of the Constitutional Court judge only in cases in which the constitutional complaint is accepted for consideration or if such is decided in the proceedings referred to in the first or second paragraphs of the preceding article.

Article 79
(The Statement of Reasons of a Panel Order)

 (1) If a panel decides that an order on the non-acceptance of a constitutional complaint is to include a statement of reasons, the constitutional complaint is considered at a session of the panel.

(2) The panel may decide that the statement of reasons of the order whose operative provisions were adopted at the session be supplemented or changed. The supplemented or changed statement of reasons of the order is submitted to the members of the panel before the redaction in order for them to take a position thereon within three days. If within this time period any member of the panel declares in writing that he does not agree with the statement of reasons, the case is put on the agenda of a session of the panel with his proposal that the order be decided on again.

Article 80
(Separate Opinions)

(1) If upon voting on an order on the non-acceptance or rejection of a constitutional complaint a Constitutional Court judge declares that he will write a separate opinion, he writes such within seven days after the session of the panel. If a session of the panel is a correspondence session, he writes the opinion within seven days after the case file was submitted.

(2) If a Constitutional Court judge writes a separate opinion within the time limit referred to in the preceding paragraph and the conditions for deciding referred to in the first or second paragraphs of Article 77 of these Rules of Procedure are fulfilled, the separate opinion is submitted to the other Constitutional Court judges with the constitutional complaint. Within the time limit determined for writing a separate opinion, the time limit referred to in the second and third paragraphs of Article 55c of the CCA does not begin to run.

Article 81
(Panel Decisions)

Decisions on the basis of the third paragraph of Article 59 of the CCA are as a general rule adopted by the panel on the basis of the consideration of the constitutional complaint at a session of the panel.

Article 82
(Termination of the Position of a Judge Rapporteur)

(1) If a judge rapporteur had voted against the acceptance of a constitutional complaint in proceedings for its examination, and the constitutional complaint was subsequently accepted on the basis of the third paragraph of Article 55c of the CCA, he ceases to be the judge rapporteur in the same case.

(2) In such cases as are referred to in the preceding paragraph of this article, a member of the panel who voted for the acceptance of the constitutional complaint becomes the judge rapporteur. If two members of the panel voted for the acceptance of the constitutional complaint, the judge whose last name is alphabetically first becomes the judge rapporteur, if these two Constitutional Court judges do not agree otherwise.

(3) If, in such cases as are referred to in the first paragraph of this article, none of the members of the panel voted for the acceptance of the constitutional complaint, the judge who voted for its acceptance whose last name is alphabetically first becomes the judge rapporteur, if the Constitutional Court judges who voted for the acceptance do not agree otherwise.

Article 83
(The Editing of Panel Orders and Decisions)

The final text of a panel order is edited by the president of the panel. The final text of a decision referred to in Article 81 of these Rules of Procedure is edited by the panel.

Article 84
(The Decision on Costs)

If a constitutional complaint is not accepted for consideration, the costs of the proceedings, if such were claimed, are decided by an order on non-acceptance or rejection or by an order on the stay of proceedings for the examination of the constitutional complaint.

Article 85
(The Publication of Orders and Decisions)

Upon the proposal of the judge rapporteur, the panel decides on the publication of an order or decision of the panel in the Collected Decisions and Orders of the Constitutional Court and in the Official Gazette of the Republic of Slovenia.

Article 86
(The Correction of Inaccuracies)

(1) Inaccuracies made in panel orders and decisions are corrected by an order issued by the president of the panel; inaccuracies made in orders issued by a judge rapporteur are corrected by an order issued by the judge rapporteur. The order on the correction is written at the end of the original decision or order; the participants in proceedings are served the order on the correction.

(2) If such a decision or order has already been published, the order on the correction is published in the same manner.