in Soviet law, the opinion of a judge who does not agree with a court decision reached by a majority of votes in a criminal or civil case. The special opinion is given in writing in the conference room. The right to a special opinion is an important legal guarantee of the independence of judges in resolving a case. The special opinion is attached to the file of the case, but it is not publicly announced in the courtroom, thereby ensuring the secrecy of the judges’ conference.
The codes of criminal procedure of most of the Union republics state that a case in which a special opinion has been given (if the case was not being considered by way of cassation) is to be sent to the chairman of a higher court (after the decision has taken legal effect) to resolve the question of lodging a protest by way of supervision.