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RULES

OF JUDICIAL CONDUCT

OF THE REPUBLIC OF ARMENIA

GENERAL PROVISIONS

The present Rules define peculiarities and criteria, professional, business and moral qualities of formal and informal conduct of judges of the Republic of Armenia.

The Rules are mandatory for any Judge during the whole period of his/her office and affiliation to the Judges’ Association. The compliance with the Rules ensures fair and impartial administration of justice independence, consistency and professionalism of a judge. The Rules do not define the status of a judge and do not substitute for the legal provisions defining the status.

GENERAL FEATURES OF THE CONDUCT OF JUDGES

Rule 1. With all his activity, business, professional and moral features the judge shall promote independence and strengthening of the judiciary and steady growth of public confidence in the judiciary and shall avoid anything that may affect the prestige of the judiciary.

Rule 2. The Judge should sacredly keep his oath and should not break it, uphold reputation of court and judge, maintain high standards of conduct and command respect towards the judiciary and himself and under any circumstances should uphold the high title, good name, honor and dignity of a judge and must not arouse suspicion in his/her fairness and impartiality by his conduct.

Rule 3. Guided by the Constitution and the laws of the Republic of Armenia, the Judge shall follow the principle of the rule of law, protect human rights and freedoms, and assist in exercising these rights and freedoms.

Rule 4. The Judge should serve the justice, be disciplined and dedicated to his job, must have a high sense of responsibility, should not act to his benefit and must avoid judicial mistakes and violation of law.

Rule 5. The Judge shall under any circumstances be fair, humane, kind and considerate, patient, courteous and modest, and be a person of principle. He/she should be impartial and persistent. The judge must require the same from his/her personnel.

Rule 6. The Judge shall not disclose confidentiality and shall not provide other persons with personal, family, state, office, commercial as well as other confidential information acquired in a judicial capacity.

The Judge shall not conceal information that may threaten human lives, human health and environmental security and shall immediately inform the relevant authorities about it.

Rule 7. The Judge shall carry the weapon in compliance with defined regulations, use it only in cases, specified by law for self-defence, and should not give it to other persons.

CONDUCT OF THE JUDGE DURING HIS/HER OFFICE ACTIVITY

Rule 8. The judge shall exercise his/her official duties on his/her own and be independent of legislative and executive authorities, other bodies, officials and other persons as well as be independent of his/her relations, friends and acquaintances. Neither should he/she be influenced by mass media predisposed materials and shall act without fear of criticism, and serve only the law.

The Judge, at the same time, shall be tolerant to mass media that highlight court activities, shall not avoid to be controlled by public, if by doing so, he will not act against the interests of justice and will not arouse suspicion as of impartiality of the court and will not put the court under pressure.

Rule 9. The Judge shall not be led by assumptions or emotions. He/she shall execute and interpret the law properly, make court decisions based on comprehensive, complete and objective study of evidence and facts obtained in compliance with legislation in accordance with his understanding of law and his legal consciousness, shall not be influenced by attitude and behavior of parties and other external forces.

Rule 10. The Judge shall ensure independence, impartiality and fairness of the judicial proceedings, observance of the rights of the parties to judicial proceedings in compliance with the law, protect their honor, dignity, image, shall ensure equality of the citizens and protect their lawful interests before the law and the court.

Rule 11. The Judge shall study all cases under his/her jurisdiction, shall not avoid difficulties of the case, shall decently accept grounded challenge and challenge self-rejection under circumstances limiting his/her impartiality.

Rule 12. The Judge shall not make public declarations and comments on proceedings still pending in the court, on judicial acts adopted and not entered into force and other issues that may impair fairness of proceeding, shall not impede impartial and fair proceedings, shall not comment on the content of the cases under his consideration or reveal it to other persons. The Judge shall not express suspicion about actions taken by other judges and shall not interfere with cases being considered by other judges.

CONDUCT OF THE JUDGE DURING EXTRA - JUDICIAL ACTIVITY

Rule 13. The Judge shall always bear in mind that he is a carrier of high title of a judge and shall lead his extra-judicial activities up to the standard required by that title.

Rule 14. The Judge shall build his/her informal, family, social, civic and other relationships as well as maintain his/her lifestyle in the mode that it should not affect his official duties, implementation of justice and impartiality of proceedings.

Rule 15. The Judge shall not meet privately with people associated with cases under his/her consideration, accept social hospitality, invitations and gifts from them, address them with any request, shall avoid personal relations that may affect adversely on his/her reputation, honor and dignity.

The Judge may participate at sessions and conferences of legislative or executive authorities and have contacts with representatives and other officials on issues related to the judicial system, administration of justice and independence of the court, if this will not influence performance of official duties by the Judge and will not arouse suspicion about his/her impartiality.

Rule 16. The Judge shall respect law in his/her social and private life, abstain from offences, other unlawful actions and lifestyle that shall use his position for evil purposes. The Judge may protect his civil rights in compliance with law and through court.

Rule 17. The Judge shall not be involved in political activities, he is not allowed to join any political party, participate in election campaign of any candidate, in meetings of political parties, assemblies, conferences, processions, rallies, demonstrations and other events.

The judge may take part in elections, may enjoy the right of voting and freedom of speech.

The Judge may be involved in social activities, if it does not affect justice.

The judge shall not be the member of the social organization if protection of interests of this organization may result in partiality.

The judge may participate in the rituals peculiar to national customs and civil events.

Rule 18. The Judge shall not be involved in entrepreneurial activities, is not allowed to receive fees as a consultant and engage in financial dealings that may be perceived as an abuse of the position of a judge, shall not serve as trustee, guardian, proxy, except for the cases of acting as a proxy for members of judge’s family, if such a service does not interfere with proper performance of judicial duties.

The Judge shall refrain from those financial and business relations that may affect his/her fairness, performance of his/her duties and may impair his/hers reputation.

The judge may acquire property, according to interests of his family make deals, that will not affect his duties and will not contradict the present Rules and laws of the Armenia Republic.

PROFESSIONAL, BUSINESS AND MORAL QUALITIES OF THE JUDGE

Rule 19. The Judge shall be carrier of high moral values, avoid impairing actions, comply with the cohabitation rules, respect national and religious rituals, promote public confidence in judges not arouse suspicion about his morals by his/her demeanor and kind deeds.

Rule 20. The Judge should have high professional and business and judicial skills and legal capacity to react quickly, to correctly evaluate evidence and to enforce laws accurately, must be competent and have wide vision, shall be aware of any legislative changes and amendments, shall not arouse suspicion towards his high professional skills and knowledge and, if necessary, render professional assistance to his co-workers.

Rule 21. The Judge shall continuously upgrade the level of his/her knowledge; participate in judicial training, improve his/her work skills and trial techniques; enhance his experience, strive to improve his professional qualification and class and to ensure through these efforts, his continuous activity as a judge and be on the list of official promotion of professionally qualified judges.

Rule 22. The Judge should avoid anything that may lead to sanctions against him/her or may set grounds for disciplinary penalty.

FINAL PROVISIONS

While judge’s immunity guarantees are observed a judge shall be held responsible for the abuse of his position s or other offenses in accordance with the acting legislation and regulations defined by the law.

The Council of the Association of Judges shall consider violation of the requirements of the present Rules by a judge in his presence and take into account all circumstances of misconduct.

An action or inaction, even though not regarded as criminal, the content of which is inconsistent with the high title of judge, is qualified as misconduct impairing the judiciary and the reputation of judge.

The present Rules are the activity guidance for each member of the Association of Judges.