On the home page of the Supreme Court, the rulings of the Supreme Court raising legal interest are systematized according to new classifications in the section Archive of case-law decisions.

 

Introducing the most significant innovations:

  • Rulings with case-law theses

Two types of Supreme Court rulings are distinguished:

1) rulings of the case-law with the title and case-law thesis;

2) rulings raising legal interest with the title only.

The term "case-law ruling" (marked with a special symbol – judicature) is used for all rulings of the departments of the Supreme Court added to the collection before 1 January  2016, as well as rulings added after 1 January  2016, if they are accompanied by an appropriate title and case-law thesis – the key message expressed in a ruling that is important for the unified understanding and application of the law, and an appropriate title.

By clicking on the relevant link above the list of rulings, the user has the opportunity to choose whether all the rulings included in the classifications are selected, or only case-law rulings.

The addition of rulings in the archive of the case-law is carried out in co-operation between the Division of Case-law and Research and judges: rulings raising legal interest are selected; the titles and theses are created using the findings regarding the particular ruling. The systematization of rulings in classifications is suggested by the Division of Case-law and Research.

  • More detailed classification by categories of cases

Every Department of the Supreme Court has its own classification system according to the categories of cases. Here all rulings since 2002 are added, giving users a comprehensive overview of the opinion of the Supreme Court on a particular issue of law.

If a particular decision of the Supreme Court concerns legal issues relating to several subsections of the classification, the decision is added to each applicable subsection of the classicization.

In these classifications, it is possible for the user to choose whether to display all rulings or only case case-law rulings. If all rulings are visible, then they will only appear with the titles, but if user selects case-law rulings, then only case-law rulings will appear with the title and the theses corresponding to the particular section of the classification. Selection of case-law decisions shall be made here:

The rulings in this classification are sorted in the relevant sections by years, but within a year – in ascending order by numbers of cases.

  • A common index of legal provisions for all departments

The laws of the Republic of Latvia and international laws applied in the rulings of the Supreme Court are included in the index of legal provisions.

A specific case number is indicated at the relevant legal provision, which is used in the ruling, and a link to the file containing particular ruling is attached.

The index of legal provisions is common to all three departments of the Supreme Court – the Department of Civil Cases, Criminal Cases and Administrative Cases.

When opening a specific article, paragraph or clause of a law or other legal provision, rulings are arranged by departments and by years, but within a year– by consecutive numbers of cases. 

  • Novelty – Indicator of quoted rulings

In order to improve the classification of case-law, a new unprecedented index – an index of quoted rulings – has been created. It lists the rulings of the international courts, the Constitutional Court and the Supreme Court used in the rulings of the Supreme Court.

This index is also common to rulings of all three departments of the Supreme Court – the Department of Civil Cases, Criminal Cases and Administrative Cases – starting from 2016.

  • Advanced search options

With the introduction of the new ruling-search module, rulings on the Supreme Court website could not be found if user searches them on the website’s main search tool. The rulings must be looked for in the search engine, which is placed in the section Archive of case-law decisions.

Here, rulings can be selected according to several criteria:

  • by case number – rulings may be searched by the number of the case given at the court of first instance, by the archive number given to the case at the Supreme Court (SKC, SKK, SKA) or by the ECLI number (these numbers are being allocated only since September 2017);
  • by the department, the date of the ruling, choosing whether the ruling is adopted by an extended composition of the court or in joint session;
  • by type of the ruling – not only judgments and decisions can be searched for, but also a decision on ancillary complaint, an assignment hearing decision and an ancillary court decision;
  • by words contained in the title or thesis.

 

Concluding remarks
The collection of rulings published in the classification is constantly being updated – the latest rulings are added regularly, along with rulings of earlier years that raise legal interest.

In order to facilitate the search for rulings, the systematization of rulings is also improved as necessary.

Finally, it should be emphasized once again that only a part of all rulings of the Court are included in this archive of case-law decisions; only those are included that form case-law or raise legal interest. All judgments and part of decisions from 2013 of the Supreme Court are anonymized and available at  www.manas.tiesas.lv

 

Information prepared by

Rasma Zvejniece, the Head of the Division of Communication of the Supreme Court

E-mail: rasma.zvejniece@at.gov.lv, telephone: +371 67020396, +371 28652211