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Evolving Justice: The Constitutional Relationship between the Minister of Justice and the Judiciary and a Short Overview of Recent Developments in the Area of Court Management in the Republic of Slovenia

Author:

Zoran Skubic

Abstract

Slovenia in 1995 embarked on a road of reforming its judiciary using a model that harked back to history but proved outlived. We learned the hard way that in terms of court management diffusion of responsibility breeds complacency, defeatism and indifference especially if it is combined with courts of inadequate size and capacity for effective delivery of justice. The most prominent feature of the reform was the reorganization of the courts of the first instance where the jurisdiction of the former monolithic Basic Courts was divided between new Local and District Courts. This resulted in that inter alia the most senior and experienced judges were delegated to District Courts. The reorganization also divided the caseload unevenly between the Local and District Courts. As a consequence the Local Courts were left with mostly inexperienced judges that had to deal with the bulk of the overall caseload of the courts of the first instance. The consequences were thus obvious. The motivation of the judges fell significantly which led to the overall performance especially in Local Courts to decrease substantially. This in turn led to a steady increase of unresolved cases which in time proved the main cause for considerable court backlogs that in the end culminated in the Lukenda v. Slovenia decision of the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.

How to Cite: Skubic, Z., (2011). Evolving Justice: The Constitutional Relationship between the Minister of Justice and the Judiciary and a Short Overview of Recent Developments in the Area of Court Management in the Republic of Slovenia. International Journal for Court Administration. 4(1), pp.17–34. DOI: http://doi.org/10.18352/ijca.67
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Published on 15 Dec 2011.
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