- European Union Publications Office
- Publication date:
The Czech legal system belongs to the Germanic branch of continental legal culture. Written law is the basis of the legal order and the most important sources of law are legal regulations (acts of Parliament, as well as government or ministerial orders), international treaties (once they have been ratified by Parliament and officially declared as binding in the Collection of International Treaties) and such findings of the Constitutional Court of the Czech Republic in which an act or a part thereof has been nullified as being unconstitutional or confirmed to be constitutional. There are general courts – district and regional courts (usually appeal courts), with specialised senates, upper courts, a Supreme Court and a Supreme Administrative Court. Regional courts are usually appeal courts. The Supreme Court and Supreme Administrative Court usually supervise procedural aspects and decide on extraordinary remedies. The Constitutional Court oversees the constitutionality of legislation, as well as the case law of the general courts. Legal competence concerning gender equality is distributed among government institutions comprising the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs; the Ministry of Justice; and the Ministry of Education. These ministries are responsible for proposing laws and acts implementing the EU gender equality framework. It is difficult to say which of the above-mentioned institutions takes the lead on gender equality, as each aspect is dealt with by the most competent ministry. There is also the Government Council for Equal Opportunities for Women and Men, a permanent government advisory body in the area of creating equal opportunities for women and men, under the auspices of the Office of Government. In addition, Parliament (composed of the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate) is responsible for adopting laws and acts; only courts are responsible for making decisions in individual cases. The Public Defender of Rights is a Czech equality body, which is also responsible for gender equality. The Public Defender of Rights cannot make decisions in individual cases, but can only publish reports and opinions. These have moral weight, but are not legally binding.