Disciplinary Chamber

Disciplinary Chamber

The disciplinary liability of judges was amended – by virtue of the Act of December 8, 2017 on the Supreme Court (Journal of Laws of 2018, item 5), the Disciplinary Chamber of the Supreme Court was established (Article 27 of the abovementioned Act).

It is specialized in this area, within the competence thereof are almost exclusively the disciplinary matters of judges and lawyers, legal advisers, prosecutors, notaries public, and bailiffs.

At the outset, it shall be clearly indicated that the legal solutions in Poland regarding disciplinary proceedings against judges and representatives of other legal professions are fully compliant with the Polish Constitution. They also guarantee the independence of persons adjudicating in the abovementioned cases.

Disciplinary courts referred to in Article 110 §1 of the Act of July 27, 2001 – Law on the structure of common courts (Journal of Laws of 2020, item 365, as amended – hereinafter “s.c.c.”). These courts are the disciplinary courts at the courts of appeal and the Disciplinary Chamber of the Supreme Court. Pursuant to Article 110a of the s.c.c., in disciplinary courts at the courts of appeal, judges of ordinary courts adjudicate, while the judges of the Disciplinary Chamber of the Supreme Court are the judges of the Supreme Court.

The judges of disciplinary courts enjoy all constitutional and statutory guarantees regarding judges, including those relating to their independence. According to Article 178 paragraph 1 of the Act of April 2, 1997 – the Constitution of the Republic of Poland (Journal of Laws No. 78, item 483, as amended), judges of disciplinary courts are independent in their office and are subject only to the Constitution and statutes. The above is to guarantee that disciplinary jurisdiction is independent of other authorities, including legislative and executive power (Article 173 of the Constitution).

Judges, including the judges of disciplinary courts, when making an act of oath, undertake to adjudicate in accordance with their conscience and in a manner free from any dependence. The suggestion contained in the question that the disciplinary judicature was influenced by legislative or executive power is therefore devoid of any justification.