Is There a Right Judge for Each Case? A Comparative Study of Case Assignment in Six European Countries
Title: Is There a Right Judge for Each Case? A Comparative Study of Case Assignment in Six European Countries
Other Title(s): Existirá um juiz Adequado para Cada Processo? Um Estudo Comparativo sobre a Adjudicação de Processos em seis Países Europeus
Citation: European Journal of Legal Studies, 2007, 1, 2
External link: http://www.ejls.eu/
This paper presents the findings of a qualitative, empirical study on the distribution of cases among judges in six European countries. Case assignment is one of the main issues of court organizations, because it touches upon some of the essential aspects of rendering justice: judicial independence and impartiality, court flexibility and efficiency. This research was organized around four main issues: a) institutional court settings of the nations considered in this study, b) principles and general rules applicable to internal case assignment in the judicial systems included in this examination, c) internal court organization related to case assignment rules, practices and instruments, d) internal case assignment systems, which explores in some detail the practice of case assignment in the courts. The research shows that case assignment is the product of a process that balances the values of judicial impartiality and court organisation efficiency. In this article we present the factors affecting this process and the main differences between the countries of our sample. According to the research findings, one priority dominates the case assignment systems in all the countries of our sample: balancing the caseload amongst judges in terms of quantity and quality of cases.
Subject: Comparative Law
Type of Access: openAccess