Last week, Jautrite Briede and Andris Gulans, judges of the Supreme Court Department of Administrative Cases, and Aija Reitupe, Sandija Audzere and Diana Makarova, judges of the Administrative district court, when going to visit of exchange of experience, visited several administrative courts of Poland – administrative courts of Warsaw region and Kielce region, which are the first instance courts, and the Supreme Administrative Court of Poland in Warsaw.  

Since 2004, administrative courts of two instances have existed in Poland. Previously, it had been only one instance, and its branches were located not only in Warsaw, but also in other regions (voivodeships). Latvian judges were interested in the fact that, when reforming this system, many former judges of the Supreme Court resumed working in corresponding voivodeship, but they preserved their status as the judges of the highest level court. At present these judges review cases both in the first instance and go to Warsaw approximately once a month to discharge duties of a judge of the Supreme Administrative Court.  

The judge Jautrite Briede indicates that the main difference from Latvian administrative procedure is that in Poland administrative courts examine only lawfulness of decisions and other actions of public administration, but they do not examine the case on the merits and do not assess evidences. If the court concludes that evidences had not been assessed appropriately or other evidence should be examined, it reverses decision appealed and transfers to institution for new examination. If the institution does not execute indications of the court, the court may impose the fine.   

In Polish administrative courts, cases have been heard at the court hearing mainly, the court announces the judgement immediately after the hearing and at the same time, explains reasoning. The court may also indicate that it fully agrees with facts comprised in decision of the institution. In case of written refusal substantiation is written in the judgement only if a party to the case requested it (it occurs approximately in 70% cases).

Findings were obtained in respect of separate opinions of judges, decrease of state fee or release from paying thereof, performing of mediation procedure in the court and other issues, which are topical within court proceedings.  

Latvian delegation appreciated great contribution of Polish colleagues to organisation of the visit and pleasant informal attitude of Polish judges and employees.  


Information prepared by

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

E-mail:, telephone: 67020396, 28652211