2018-12-24

Supreme Court to Establish Grand Chamber

Taiwan’s Legislature on December 7 enacted amendments proposed by the Judicial Yuan to the Court Organic Act (法院組織法) and the Administrative Court Organization Act (行政法院組織法), making way for the establishment of a “Grand Chamber” (大法庭) to resolve the recurring issue of courts at different levels issuing conflicting rulings.
 
The establishment of the Grand Chamber is expected to successfully unify opinions of law.  The Supreme Court will be entitled to scrutinize general legal principles on which court rulings are based. Contradictory verdicts and confusing legal interpretations are some of the reasons that the public has been losing confidence in the soundness and impartiality of the judicial system.
 
Therefore, the amendments preliminarily are expected to lessen the frequency of instances where courts issue conflicting rulings, and the current system for resolutions and precedents issued by the Supreme Court will officially be abolished within three years.
 
According to the legislative purpose, the Grand Chamber should not be considered as “a fourth instance” of trial, but, rather is a system of remedial procedure.  
 
Judicial Yuan Secretary-General Lu Tai-lang (呂太郎) stated that the expectation is that the Grand Chamber will strengthen judicial openness and transparency, and will enhance protection of constitutional values and public benefits, as rulings of the Grand Chamber will be posted along with the parties’ applications and statements of defense on the official website.
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