Republic of Cyprus
Ministry of Justice and Public Order

Promotion of Legislative Work


The task of monitoring the branches of law falling within the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Justice and Public Order aims at the prevention of delinquent behavior, suppression of crime, effective punishment of serious offences of international character, the criminal treatment based on modern trends, the strengthening of the system of administration of justice for a speedy and unhampered functioning of the judiciary and finally, modernization of the law and harmonization with the acquis communautaire.

1. The most important bills/regulations deposited before the House of Representatives and enacted, or prepared and promoted in the last two years are as follows:

· The Government on the proposal of the Ministry of Justice and Public Order adopted the bill amending the Evidence Law, which was pending before the House of Representatives since 2002 and supported its enactment. Important amendments were made particularly as regards the rules for hearsay evidence.

These amendments encompassing the abolishment of the rule of the non-adminissibility of hearsay evidence, under conditions, are expected to contribute to a more effective administration of justice.

· The Criminal Procedure Law was amended aiming at simplifying the procedure of collecting small fines, thus saving time and public money.

· Amendments to the Restoration of Offenders Law, regulated more leniently the conditions under which, previous convictions are struck off, especially as regards young persons up to the age of 21.

· A new Law prescribing the rights of persons during arrest and detention and providing for the corresponding responsibilities of the police authorities was enacted.
· An amendment to the Courts Law was deposited and enacted by the House of Representatives, regarding the extension of the civil jurisdiction of the Higher District Judge and the District Judge, aiming at a better functioning of the civil courts.

· Seven judicial posts in the several ranks of the District Courts were created, for the strengthening of the operation of the District and Assize Courts.

· With amendments made to section 336 of the Penal Code, credit cards were included within the context of the offences of forgery, aiming at combating fraud and forgery of methods of payment other than in cash.

· With further amendments made to the Penal Code the age of the criminal responsibility was raised to 14 years. Also the sentences for the offences of “false representations” and fraud were increased considerably.

· It has been decided that the Penal Code be revised generally. The task will be assigned to experts.

· A bill was deposited to the House of Representative introducing the sentence of periodic imprisonment during the weekends. This sentence is also associated with the offences of football hooliganism, aiming at keeping offenders of this category away from athletic places.

· Besides, the Ministry of Justice and Public Order acting in cooperation with the Ministry of Labour and Social Insurance, took measures for reinforcing the infrastructure for the implementation of the existing legislation relating to the alternative sentence of community service.

· A bill amending the Compounding of Offences Law is pending before the House of Representatives aiming at the increase of the maximum amount that may be imposed out of court from £50 to £100 with the perspective when enacted into Law, to proceed with the issue of an Order for the increase of the amount imposed out of court in relation to road offences (seat belt, speed, use of mobile telephone, illegal parking in zebra crossing).

At the same time, a further amendment of this Law, is under consideration, regulating out of court fines, by giving the offender the alternative choice of attending seminars concerning road safety.

2. Furthermore, the year before full accession of Cyprus to the European Union (1.5.2004) all the pending legislative measures for harmonization were completed.

Particularly:

· 15 Conventions and Protocols of the European Union were ratified by Laws, as well as 10 Conventions and Protocols of the Council of Europe and United Nations (also included in the aquis), in relation to the judicial cooperation in the fight against international crime and organized crime.

· Special Laws were enacted for incorporating within the Cyprus legal order the Framework Decisions of the European Union in relation to the European Arrest Warrant and the surrender procedures between Member States as well as for the set up of Joint Investigation Teams. By amendments made to the Legal Aid Law, legal aid may now be provided in transborder civil disputes in line with the relevant Directive of the European Council.

· The special Part incorporated to the Advocates Law in relation to transborder practice of the profession of advocates was further amended for full harmonization with the European acquis. At the same time, the Ministry of Justice and Public Order organized a seminar for the familiarization of advocates with the new harmonized legal status.

· The competencies of the Commissioner for Administration were expanded. The Ombudsman is now established as the Cyprus Anti-Discrimination Body and has the authority also to examine (either on her own initiative or after a complaint) complaints against discriminating acts/actions, either in the private or public sector.

· A new law was enacted in relation to the equal treatment of persons irrespective of racial or ethnic origin.

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Mediation

Law 159(I)/2012 titled “Law which provides for certain aspects of mediation in civil matters” was enacted on 16 November 2012 in order to harmonize domestic law with Directive 2008/52/EC on certain aspects of mediation in civil and commercial matters. The law is not limited to cross-border disputes, as the Directive, but is extended and also covers domestic civil and commercial disputes. The parties may apply to the Court to declare the agreement reached as enforceable. Also, any of the two parties may terminate the mediation process at any time.

This law:

(a) introduces mediation in certain civil and commercial cases, cross-border or not, as well as in the labor cross-border disputes∙

(b) provides for registration/removal of mediators in the Registers of Mediators (according to Article 7, right to register have the Practicing Advocates, members of the Cyprus Chamber of Commerce and Industry and of the Technical Chamber of Cyprus if they meet specific criteria) which are held by the Minister of Justice and Public Order∙

(c) provides for the enforceability of the compromise agreement by the Court.

According to its provisions, the parties choose a mediator. The procedure prescribed under the Law is informal. The parties agree, in consultation with the mediator, the way of conducting the procedure, its duration, the obligation of confidentiality of the process, the remuneration of the mediator and the terms of payment and any other matter deemed necessary.

Registration in the Registers of Mediators

According to the Certain Aspects of Mediation in Civil Matters Law of 2012 (Law 159(I)/2012), there are two Registers of Mediators which are kept by the Minister of Justice and Public Order: (1) the Register of Mediators where the mediation in question concerns commercial dispute and (2) the Register of Mediators where the mediation in question concerns civil dispute, other than commercial.

(1) A person, in order to be registered in the Register of Mediators where the mediation in question concerns commercial dispute must:

(a) (i) be enrolled in the Roll of Advocates and holds an annual license of practising as an advocate in accordance with the Advocate’s Law, or

(ii) be a member of the Cyprus Chamber of Commerce and Industry or the Cyprus Scientific and Technical Chamber, is the holder of a recognized university degree and has attended a special training programme to become a mediator of total forty (40) hours, organized by the Cyprus Chamber of Commerce and Industry, or the Technical Chamber of Cyprus, or has attended an equivalent programme;

(b) does not hold any public post, either permanent, or temporary, or by substitution in the public service;

(c) has not been convicted of a serious criminal offence or an offence involving dishonesty or moral turpitude;

(d) is not under a trusteeship or guardianship and he is not deprived of his legal capacity;

(e) pay a registration fee of €30 in the Minister of Justice and Public Order.

(2) A person, in order to be registered in the Register of Mediators where the mediation in question concerns civil dispute, other than commercial must:

(a) be enrolled in the Roll of Advocates and holds an annual license of practising as an advocate in accordance with the Advocate’s Law and shall submit to the Minister certification that he has attended a programme of training as a Mediator,

(b) does not hold any public post, either permanent, or temporary, or by substitution in the public service;

(c) has not been convicted of a serious criminal offence or an offence involving dishonesty or moral turpitude;

(d) is not under a trusteeship or guardianship and he is not deprived of his legal capacity;

(e) pay a registration fee of €30 in the Minister of Justice and Public Order.

Also, every person who is registered in the Registers of Mediators, must continue his training in mediation matters, attending at least twenty-four (24) hours of education every three (3) years from the date of his registration to the Register of Mediators, and submit a relevant certification to the Minister.


Σχετικά Αρχεία:

Κατεβάστε το αρχείο τύπου Excel Register of Mediators where the mediation in question concerns civil dispute, other than commercial.xls
(Μέγεθος Αρχείου: 104,54Kb)
Κατεβάστε το αρχείο τύπου Excel Register of Mediators where the mediation in question concerns commercial dispute- December 2018.xls
(Μέγεθος Αρχείου: 248,86Kb)

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