Review of Judicial Decisions

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Review of Judicial Decisions


the verification by higher-ranking courts of the legality and grounds of the judgments (prigovor,) decisions, rulings, and decrees of lower-ranking courts: the correction of judicial errors.

In the USSR the usual method of correcting judicial errors is to verify the legality of court decisions that have not taken legal effect (cassation proceedings). A decision (judgment) that has taken legal effect, if it is illegal or unjustified, is reviewed by way of supervision. Review by way of supervision is an independent stage in criminal and civil procedure. Unlike review by way of cassation, it is not subject to any time restrictions. However, review by way of supervision of a judgment of guilty, ruling, or court decree in a criminal case that is motivated by the mildness of the punishment or by the need to apply a law for a graver crime to the convicted person is permitted only within one year from the day the judgment, ruling, or decree has become final. The same time limitation applies to review, by way of supervision, of a judgment of acquittal and to review of a court ruling or decree dismissing a case.

Decisions that have gone into legal effect may also be reviewed because of newly discovered circumstances—that is, circumstances that were not known when the case was heard but attest to the illegality or groundlessness of the court decision. This type of review differs from review by way of supervision with respect to the grounds and conditions for initiating a new trial and the consequences of the review. The review may be conducted only upon the findings of the procurator. A court examining a case because of newly discovered circumstances may not change the initial judgment (decision, decree) but may only submit the case for a new investigation and hearing.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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