- Law of Lithuania
Lithuanian law is a part of a
legal systemof Lithuania. It is largely civil, as opposed to a common, law system, based on epitomes in the French and German systems. The Lithuanian legal system is grounded on the principles laid out in the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania and safeguarded by the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Lithuania.
The Lithuanian law has a long standing history. The origins are traced back to the first written source, the
Casimir Code( _lt. Kazimiero teisynas), published in 1468 by the Grand Duke of Lithuania Casimir Jagiellonwith the Lithuanian Council of Lords. It is considered to be the first codified lawof the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. Statutes of Lithuania, published three times in 1529, 1566 and 1588 were the most influensive legal codes of Lithuania. The third variant of the Statute was in force in the territory of Lithuania until 1840 when it was replaced by the Russian laws. However, under the rule of the Russian Empire, there were three separate civil law systems in force in Lithuania: in Suvalkijathe Napoleonic Codewas still applied, whereas the German lawwas in force in Klaipėda Region.
The legal system of independent Lithuania between the World Wars was influenced by the fact that three separate systems of civil law governed various parts of the country, while the autonomous Klaipėda Region had its own legal instruments. The notable difference from the rest of the state was the possibility of a secular
civil marriagein the 1930s and 1940s. The drafting of Lithuanian legal codes went on for decades and was not completed until World War II. During the Sovietoccupation the adapted law of the USSR was in force in Lithuania.
After regaining of independence in 1990, the largely modified Soviet legal codes were in force for about a decade. The modern Constitution of Lithuania was adopted in
25 October 1992. In 2001 the Civil Codeof Lithuania was passed in Seimas. It was succeeded by the Criminal Codeand Criminal ProcedureCode in 2003. The approach to the criminal lawis inquisitorial, as opposed to adversarial; it is generally characterised by an insistence on formality and rationalisation, as opposed to practicality and informality.
European Union lawis an integral part of the Lithuanian legal system since 1 May 2004.
Civil and commercial law
The civil law and
commercial lawis codified in a single legal act - the Civil Code of the Republic of Lithuania [http://www3.lrs.lt/pls/inter3/dokpaieska.showdoc_l?p_id=245495&p_query=&p_tr2=] ( _lt. Lietuvos Respublikos civilinis kodeksas) which is in force since 1 July, 2001. It is largely based on the Dutch civil law. The commercial law in Lithuania is of an increasingly excellent drafting quality and the market in Lithuanian legal services is now increasingly competitive.
Legal professionals are prepared and the law is researched in departments of three universities of Lithuania:
* "Law Faculty of
Vilnius University", the oldest, established in 1641- M.A., LL.D.;
* "Law Faculty of
Mykolas Romeris University" - B.A., M.A., LL.M., LL.D.;
* "Law School of
Vytautas Magnus University" - LL.M..
Egidijus Bieliūnas- a Member of the European Commission on Human Rights;
Danutė Jočienė- a first female judge from Lithuania in the European Court of Human Rightsand a Docentin Vilnius University;
Pranas Kūris- a Judge of the European Court of Justice;
Mykolas Romeris- a progenitor of the Lithuanian Constitutional lawschool, judge of the Hague Tribunal;
Vilenas Vadapalas- a Judge of the Court of First Instance.
Prominent Lawyers in Lithuania
Vytautas Greičius- Chairman of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Lithuania
Kęstutis Lapinskas- Chairman of the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Lithuania
Valentinas Mikelėnas- a former Justice of Supreme Court of Lithuaniaand a most prominent Lithuanian civil law scholar to date
Vytautas Milius- Chairman of the Court of Appeal of Lithuania
Stanislovas Narutavičius- a signatory of the Act of Independence of Lithuania
Artūras Paulauskas- a former Chairman of the Parliament of Lithuania
Mykolas Sleževičius- a former Prime Minister of Lithuania
Jokūbas Šernas- a signatory to the Act of Independence of Lithuania
Antanas Tumėnas- a former Minister of Justiceand Prime Minister of Lithuania
Virgilijus Valančius- Chairman of the Supreme Administrative Court of the Republic of Lithuania
Rolandas Valiūnas- an advocateand managing partner at the law firm Lideika, Petrauskas, Valiūnas ir partneriai LAWIN
Legal systems of the world
* [http://www3.lrs.lt/dokpaieska/forma_e.htm The official database of legal acts of Lithuania] - in the website of Seimas
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