The European Commission for the Efficiency of Justice

In March 2010 the Ordinance on internal organisation of the Ministry of Justice was enforced – the number of organisational units – Directorates reduced from 18 to 11. Attached is the Organisation Chart of the MoJ.

Currently the Revision of the Strategy of the Reform of Judiciary is underway. The main goals still are:

1. Independence/Impartiality and professionalism of Judiciary

•Package of Laws was enacted in October 2010 (Amendments to the Law on Courts, new State Judiciary Council Act; Amendments to the State Attorney’s Office Act - introducing objective and transparent criteria for entering, selection, training, appointment and promotion of judicial officials.

• According to Judicial Academy Act as of January 1, 2010 the Judicial Academy has become independent institution (previously a Directorate within the Ministry of Justice). State School for Judicial Officials as one of the Judicial Academy’s Sector was established. The public competition for enrolling the first 60 candidates for judicial official was announced in September 2010.

• In June the Constitution of the RoC was amended thus ensuring enhancement of independence and impartiality of judiciary

2. Professionalism / upgrading of knowledge and additional trainings are provided by the JA, with the task to provide initial, continuous and specialised professional trainings of judges and state attorneys. At present the Academy's activities hinge on workshops organised at its five regional centres.

• Under the Judicial Academy Act, as of 1 January 2010, the Judicial Academy has become a public institution entirely independent from the executive and legislative power, financed from the national budget. From the 1st January until the 1st June 2010 Judicial Academy held total of 73 educational activities for 1383 participants (in all five regional centres simultaneously). Also, Judicial Academy moved to more adequate premises.

3. Efficiency

• Currently the Implementation of the Action Plan for implementation of the new Act on Criminal
Procedure is underway: training of judges, state attorneys, police officers and attorneys, facilities for
interrogation of defendants provided for in Zagreb, Split, Rijeka and Osijek offices of Office for
Suppression of Corruption and Organised Crime (as part of state attorneys office),

• According to the new Law on Administrative Disputes, as of 2012, there will exist 4 first instance
Administrative courts and the Administrative Court of the Republic of Croatia.

Reduction of Backlog

    From March 2009 to March 2010, total reduction of unresolved cases by 7,2%,
    The number of unresolved old civil cases has been reduced by 7,66%, and the number of unresolved old criminal cases was reduced by 16,81% in the period December 2009-December 2010);
    The speed of land registration decreased from the average of 800 days to 67 days (2004-2009), while the speed of mortgage registration decreased from the average of 23 days to 7 days.
    The transcription of land registry data has been completed for 99.62% cases. In August 2004, the systematic land registration reform began. At that time the land registries in the Republic of Croatia (109) had a total of 359,500 unresolved land registration cases.

Court Rationalisation:

    Finalised the process of defining of courts’ and municipal state attorneys’ offices network, courts and state attorneys’ offices have functionally been merged, physical merger is underway. Proposal of rationalization of second-instance and specialised courts (county courts reduction by 29% and commercial courts reduction by 46%), as well as reduction of county state attorneys offices which follow the rationalisation of county courts is in the Parliamentary procedure

Computerization of the justice system

In 2010. commenced the Project of introducing Integrated Court Case Management System in courts: by October it was introduced in 57 courts and 10 permanent offices, integrated system of case management was introduced in 4 state attorneys’ offices,

E –statistics programme which allows for the statistical monitoring of the work of all municipal courts and of every judge has been introduced

In July 2010, the Parliament adopted the Act on Amendments to the Courts Register Act. The Amendments to the Act are directed to the continuation of informatization and modernization process of the court register initiated with the E-company project.

Mediation/alternative solution disputes

    The Project “Enhancement of mediation as alternative case resolution” finalized in November 2009 have resulted in: amendments on Law on mediation, training of mediators, establishing of the Registry of mediators and the Commission for alternative case dispute at the MoJ.
    the Commission for Alternative Dispute Resolution adopted a Code of Ethics for Mediators
    In October 2010 Croatian Chamber of Trade and Crafts organized International Conference “Alternative Dispute Resolution” with the aim of raising the awareness and enhancing of the mediation system, with the special emphasis on the cooperation between judiciary and business sector

Enforcement

• Public Bailiffs as the new legal profession was introduced within the reform of the enforcement system (by new Enforcement Act and the Act on Bailiffs submitted for legislative procedure in the second quarter 2010), ensuring more efficient and accelerated system for the implementation of enforcement.