Portuguese Constitutional Court

Portuguese Constitutional Court

The Portuguese Constitutional Court ("Tribunal Constitucional", pron. IPA2|tɾibu'naɫ kõʃtitusiu'naɫ) is a special court, defined by the Portuguese Constitution as part of the judicial branch of the Portuguese political organization. Unlike the rest of the country's courts, the Constitutional Court has important characteristics, such as a special composition, and unique competences. The main task of the court is to review the constitutionality of the newly approved laws, but it also has important powers related to the President of the Republic, the political parties and referendums.

The Portuguese Constitution defines the Constitutional Court as a completely independent organ, that operates independently from the other branches of government, such as the Executive or the Legislative. The judges of the Constitutional Court are independent and cannot be impeached. The decisions of the court are above the decisions of any other authority.

The court works in Lisbon, in the Ratton Palace located in Bairro Alto.


The court is composed by thirteen judges, ten of them are elected by the Assembly of the Republic, the main legislative branch of the country, and must be elected by Two-thirds majority of the members of the Assembly. The remaining three are elected by the already elected judges. Of the thirteen judges that compose the court, six must be chosen among the general court's judges, the remaining must, at least, have a degree in law. The judges serve a nine years mandate and cannot be re-elected.

The Constitutional Court elects its own president and vice-president and approves its own rules, schedule and budget.

The President of the Constitutional Court is the third person in the Portuguese state hierarchy and has several competences, for example, conducting the relations between the court and the other authorities, he receives the candidatures for President of the Republic and presiding the court's sessions. The current president (as of 2007) is Rui Manuel Gens de Moura Ramos.


The Constitutional Court has several competences, defined in the Constitution, such as:

* Assure that the Constitution and regional autonomies are respected;
* Review and assure the constitutionality of the laws;
* Declare the President's death or inability to carry out his tasks;
* Manage the electoral processes;
* Assure that political parties fulfill the legal requirements to exist;
* Forbid and exterminate Fascist parties and organizations;
* Assure the legality of the national and local referendums.

ee also

*Portuguese court system
**Portuguese Supreme Court of Justice.
**Portuguese Court of Audits.
**Portuguese Supreme Administrative Court.
*Politics of Portugal
*Portuguese Constitution

External links

* [http://www.tribunalconstitucional.pt/tc/home.html Portuguese Constitutional Court homepage (in Portuguese)]

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Portuguese Supreme Court of Justice — (Portuguese: Supremo Tribunal de Justiça , pron. IPA2|su pɾemu tɾibu naɫ dɨ ʒuʃ tisɐ) is the highest court of law in Portugal without prejudice to the jurisdiction of the Portuguese Constitutional Court.The President of the Supreme Court of… …   Wikipedia

  • Portuguese court system — The Portuguese court system is composed of: Portuguese Constitutional Court. Portuguese Court of Audits. Portuguese Supreme Administrative Court. Portuguese Supreme Court of Justice. Other regular courts. Categories: Court systems by… …   Wikipedia

  • Portuguese Supreme Administrative Court — The Portuguese Supreme Administrative Court ( pt. Supremo Tribunal Administrativo) is the high court in Portugal that deals with matters pertaining to administrative and fiscal legal relations.This court functions without prejudice to the… …   Wikipedia

  • Portuguese presidential election, 1986 — The Portuguese presidential election of 1986 was held on January 26, the second round took place on February 16.This was tighest presidential election ever held in Portugal and was won by the Socialist Mário Soares, who initially had no more than …   Wikipedia

  • Portuguese presidential election, 2001 — The Portuguese presidential election of 2001 was held on January 12.The victory of incumbent president Jorge Branco de Sampaio was never in doubt and the turnout was therefore quite low (49.71%). Again, the incumbent president was reelected, like …   Wikipedia

  • Portuguese Empire — Portuguese Empire …   Wikipedia

  • Constitutional references to God — Several national constitutions make reference to God, most often in the preamble. Such invocationes or nominationes dei are found notably in several European constitutional traditions (reflecting the strong position of established churches in… …   Wikipedia

  • Portuguese European Constitution referendum — The Portuguese referendum on the Treaty establishing a Constitution for Europe was a planned referendum to be held on October 2005 to decide whether the Portugal should ratify the proposed Constitution of the European Union. On 12 March 2005, the …   Wikipedia

  • Portuguese presidential election, 2006 — The Portuguese presidential election were held on January 22, 2006 to elect a successor to the incumbent President Jorge Sampaio, who was term limited from running for a third consecutive term by the Constitution of Portugal. The result was a… …   Wikipedia

  • Portuguese Council of State — The Council of State ( Conselho de Estado , pron. IPA2|kõ seʎu or IPA| [kõ sɐʎu dɨ (ɨ)ʃ tadu) is an organ established by the Constitution of Portugal to advise the President of the Republic of Portugal in the exercise of many of his discretionary …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.