Code of judges ethics

APPROVED by

VIth  All-Russia Congress of Judges

on  Dec. 02, 2004

CODE  OF  JUDGES  ETHICS

Justice cannot exist without an honest and independent judicial corps. To ensure honesty and independence a judge must participate in formation and securing of high standards of judges ethics and follow the latter personally.

SECTION  1.  -  JUDGES  ETHICS  -  GENERAL RULES  AND  REQUIREMENTS

Article 1.   Judges  Duty  and  Judges  Ethics 

In professional and off-duty activities a judge must follow the Constitution of the Russian Federation and the Law of the Russian Federation “On Judges Status in the Russian Federation” and other standard legal acts and rules of conduct provided for in this Code, and general moral standards, and to facilitate to strengthening the public confidence in judiciary equity, impartiality and independence.

Article  2.   Priority  in  Judicial  Professional  Activities

Execution of judicial duties is the main purpose  of judiciary and a priority in judicial activities.

Article  3.   Judges  Status   -  Requirements

Under any circumstances a judge must have personal dignity, value his/her credit, avoid anything which could belittle judicial power authority, impair reputation of a judge and cause doubt in judiciary objectiveness and independence.

SECTION  2. RULES  OF  JUDGES  CONDUCT  IN  PROFESSIONAL  ACTIVITIES

Article  4.   Judges  Conduct  in  Exercising  Judiciary

1. In exercising his/her judicial duties a judge must proceed from the principle of protection of human and civil rights and freedoms defining the essence and contents of judicial authorities.

A judge must conscientiously exercise his professional duties and take any and all measures for timely consideration of cases and materials.

2. A judge must be honest and avoid anybody’s influence on his professional activities.

A judge must not show any prejudice of racial, sexual, religious or national nature.

3. Public opinion, possible critics of judicial activities must not affect legacy and grounds of judgements

4. A judge must be tolerable, civil, tactful and respectful towards those involved in judicial proceedings. A judge must demand the same from all those involved in legal procedure.

5. A judge shall not be entitled to disclose information at his disposal during performance judicial duties.

Article  5.   Rules  of  Judges  Conduct  during  Performance  of Other  Duties

1. A judge must demand fairness and devotion from employees of judicial apparatus and those managed by him/her.

2. A judge authorized to organize and supervise the work of other judges shall undertake any and all measures to provide timely and effective performance of their duties.

Article  6.   Judges  Conduct  in  Relations  with  Mass  Media

1. A judge shall not be entitled to make public statements, comment on any judgements, make declarations in mass media on cases under legal proceedings prior to judgements thereon come into force. Neither in public, nor in off-duty activities shall a judge be entitled to make any court  judgements in effect doubtful and criticize his/her colleagues’ professional activities.

2. A judge shall not impede mass media urging towards making any judicial activities known to the public, and should such urging not create obstacles to legal proceedings or be used to press the judiciary a judge shall render the mass media assistance required.

Article  7.    Upgrading of  Judges 

A judge shall upgrade his/her qualification to perform judicial duties thoroughly.

SECTION  3.    RULES  OF  JUDGES  CONDUCT  IN  OFF-DUTY  ACTIVITIES

Article  8.   Judges  Conduct  in  Off-Duty  Activities

-  General  Rules  and  Requirements

1. Judges’  off-duty  activities shall not make his/her decency and honesty doubtful.

2. A judge shall be entitled to be involved in any type of activities not contradicting the Law of the Russian Federation “On Judges Status in the Russian Federation” and this Code.

3. A judge may be involved in social activities should they not impair judiciary reputation and proper  performance of judicial duties.

4. A judge may interact with legislative and executive authorities and local self-government authorities in issues of law, judiciary system, judicature avoiding, however, anything which could make judges professional independence and impartiality doubtful.

5. A judge shall not be a member of any political party and movement, render them material or other support, and also express his/her political outlook, participate in political marches and demonstrations or other political actions.

6. A judge shall avoid personal contacts which could impair his reputation or   honor and dignity.

7. A judge shall abstain from financial and business relations which could make his/her honor and dignity doubtful or affect performance of professional duties.

Article  9.   Peculiarities of Judges Conduct during Realization of  the Right to  Unite,

the Rights for Freedom of  Thinking  and  Freedom  of  Speech

1. A judge shall enjoy the right for freedom of speech, freedom of worship, the right for membership in associations and participation in meetings. However, his/her conduct must not impair respect to his judicial office and must maintain his/her professional independence and impartiality.

2. A judge shall enjoy the right to found judges associations and other organizations and the right to joint them to protect his/her interests, upgrade qualification and maintain judicial independence.

3. A judge must lodge an application to suspend his authorities should he/she be nominated candidate-deputy to a legislative (representative) body of the Russian Federation, a legislative (representative) body of the subject of the Russian Federation, self-government representative body or any other elective body.

Article  10.    Peculiarities  of  Judges  Conduct  during  Realization

of  His/Her  Scientific,  Pedagogic  or  Other  Creative  Activities

A judge shall be entitled, - without impairment of judiciary interests, - to combine his major professional activities with scientific, pedagogic, lecturer’s and other creative activities, inclusive of those of paid (remunerable) for.

SECTION  4.    JUDGES  RESPONSIBILITY  FOR  THE  CODE  BREACH

Article  11.    Judges  Disciplinary  Responsibility

1. For breach of discipline (breach of the Law of the Russian Federation “On Judges Status in the Russian Federation” and  this Code) a disciplinary penalty may be imposed on a judge, - exclusive of a judge of the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation, - i.e.:

- disciplinary warning;

- dismissal of a judge.

2. On considering the degree of a judge’s disciplinary responsibility all circumstances of his/her disciplinary breach, impairment to judicial  authority and  judges title, personality and attitude to the breach shall be taken into account.

SECTION  12.     THE CODE DATE  AND  SCALE 

Article  12.     The Code Scale 

The purpose of this Code shall be setting rules of judges conduct in professional and off-duty activities compulsory for any judge of the Russian Federation, irrespective of a judge’s office, and also for retired judges who reserve a judges title and belong to judiciary society.

Article  13.    The  Code  Date

The date of this Code shall be the date Statement of the Council of Judges of the Russian Federation of October 21, 1993, is declared void.



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