Expert talk on e-Justice in court proceedings

Graphics: IRZ
Graphics: IRZ

Against the background of the ”digital Kazakhstan“ state programme, IRZ, together with the Supreme Court of the Republic of Kazakhstan, organised an online expert talk on e-Justice in German court proceedings on 25 June 2021. The Republic of Kazakhstan launched the “digital Kazakhstan“ programme on 12 December 2017. It is aimed at economic progress and at improving the population’s quality of life through the use of digital technologies. Within the context of this programme court proceedings are successively changed to an electronic format.

Some 40 judges as well as the heads of various court administration offices took part in the expert talk. They made use of the opportunity to gain an in-depth insight into e-Justice in Germany, deal with its particularities and exchange experiences among each other and the with IRZ expert Christian Roch.

Christian Roch, Presiding Judge at the Regional Court of Kempten (Allgäu), reported on the prerequisites for e-Justice in Germany, its practical implementation and the legal foundations for the introduction of electronic files. He gave the participants an overview of the technical solutions in Germany – those which have either been developed and are now in place all over the country, and those which still have to be tested and put into practice.

Christian Roch also covered the different statutory regulations on e-Justice in civil law (specialised jurisdictions) and in criminal law. He went on by outlining the particularities of court hearings during the Covid19 pandemic.

The exchange in the format of an online expert talk provided a good opportunity for IRZ to keep in touch with its Kazakh partners during the corona pandemic.

Current collaboration with the Constitutional Council

Dr. Lars Brocker, President of the Constitutional Court and Higher Administrative Court of Rhineland-Palatinate, during his lecture
Dr. Lars Brocker, President of the Constitutional Court and Higher Administrative Court of Rhineland-Palatinate, during his lecture

In cooperation with the Constitutional Council of the Republic of Kazakhstan, IRZ has organised two very successful online seminars, bringing together representatives of the Constitutional Council, the Supreme Court, the Public Prosecutor General’s Office and the Ministry of Justice for Kazakhstan.

Online seminar on constitutional complaints

The first seminar on “constitutional complaints” was held on 28 April 2021 with the participation of the German Federal Constitutional Court. Kairat Mami, Chairman of the Constitutional Council of the Republic of Kazakhstan, talked in his opening speech about the constitutional controls that have been introduced recently by the Constitutional Council. He also emphasised the importance of the exchange of experiences on “constitutional complaints” since the citizens of Kazakhstan can only submit a constitutional complaint via ordinary courts at present.

IRZ expert Prof. Dr. Gabrielle Britz, a judge at the German Federal Constitutional Court, talked about the legal requirements, provisions for admissibility and adoption procedure for constitutional complaints in Germany. She also outlined how judgements are enforced. Her lecture went on to cover the review of laws in the context of “Normenkontrollverfahren” (judicial review proceedings on the constitutionality of laws).

Online seminar on the administrative process

At the second event, held on 30 April 2021, Dr. Lars Brocker, President of the Constitutional Court and Higher Administrative Court of Rhineland-Palatinate, and Dr. Sabine Wabnitz, Presiding Judge at the Higher Administrative Court of Rhineland-Palatinate, explained the administrative procedure (administrative court proceedings) and their significance for the rule of law. They gave lectures on the following topics:

  • The significance of administrative jurisdiction in the democratic state governed by the rule of law
  • An overview of administrative jurisdiction in Germany (history and structure)
  • The powers and local jurisdiction of administrative courts (issues of differentiation)
  • Procedural principles in the administrative procedure (particularly principle of investigation)
  • Participants in court proceedings
  • Types of complaint (particularly legal and liability challenges)
  • Description of court proceedings and appeal proceedings
  • The enforcement of administrative court judgements against the administration

The Kazakh partners showed a great deal of interest. After each lecture, the participants were given the opportunity to ask questions and discuss the issues. Dr. Brocker and Dr. Wabnitz both have many years of expertise and took the time to consider all the questions and to answer them in detail.

In August, IRZ has been invited by the Constitutional Council to take part in an international symposium on constitutional law.

Online seminar for prospective administrative judges

Graphics: IRZ
Graphics: IRZ

The new administrative process law and administrative procedural law will come into force on 1 July 2021 in Kazakhstan. In this context, IRZ in cooperation with the Law Academy of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Kazakhstan, has already organised several further training seminars for Kazakh judges, the last of which was held on 3 March 2021.

This online seminar, for which IRZ was able to enlist two experts with many years of experience, Dr. Christian Schaich and Dr. Christian Reitemeier, was aimed at prospective administrative judges.

Dr. Christian Schaich, Administrative Director at the Centre for East European and International Studies, opened the event with a lecture on “General administrative law”. He shed light on the following points in particular:

  • Sources of administrative law and their classification
  • The concept of administrative acts and the different types of these acts
  • Opposition to administrative acts

Dr. Christian Reitemeier, Chief of Department at the Ministry of Justice for North Rhine-Westphalia, went on to present administrative court proceedings by addressing the following topics:

  • administrative expenses
  • the handling of administrative court claims by judges
  • administrative court rulings

Both IRZ experts were excellent mediators and illustrated their lectures, which were met with a great deal of interest from the Kazakh participants, with plenty of examples of actual cases. Since only future administrative judges were taking part in the seminar, the expert discussions were at a correspondingly high level.

IRZ is planning further training for judges in Kazakhstan, covering topics including mediation and court settlements in administrative proceedings.