EU’s top court orders Poland to suspend Supreme Court reform

EU’s top court orders Poland to suspend Supreme Court reform
By bne IntelliNews December 18, 2018

Poland must suspend its controversial law that lowers the retirement age of Supreme Court judges, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruled on December 17.

The ruling from the ECJ — which serves as the Supreme Court of the EU — ends the dispute between the Polish government and Brussels over the reform. Warsaw had to backtrack on the reform earlier on after the ECJ issued an interim ruling on the case.

PiS passed the contested law earlier this year, reducing the retirement age of Supreme Court judges from 70 to 65, thus forcing more than one-third of the court’s line-up — including its president Malgorzata Gersdorf — into retirement.

The opposition, the EU and international judicial bodies have attacked PiS for passing the law, which, they claim, is aimed at establishing political control over Poland’s top court.

PiS' previous reforms of the judiciary resulted in the ruling party taking over control of the Constitutional Tribunal and of the process of nominating judges of common courts.

PiS says reforms were necessary to make the country’s top court more efficient and to cleanse it of judges active in the communist era before 1989.

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