Lawyers' Day debates independence in the selection of judges - politics


In Germany, politics and the judiciary are responsible for selecting judges. The procedure encourages nepotism and sometimes prevents the best from getting a chance. Some lawyers would like to change it - but by no means all.

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Wolfgang JanischKarlsruhe

Andreas Singer kept quiet in the Geneva hall of the Bonn conference center, but the discussion of the German Lawyers' Congress on the tiresome procedure for filling judicial posts had an attentive listener in him. Singer is the President of the Stuttgart Regional Court and would have liked to have risen one floor to become the chief post of the Higher Regional Court (OLG) there. He brought the requirements with him, but Minister of Justice Marion Gentges (CDU) had other plans. Beate Linkenheil should have the top job in Baden-Württemberg justice get, department head in Gentges' ministry. Of course, the Presidential Council of the Higher Regional Court, which has a kind of gatekeeper function in the courts, vetoed it and suggested another candidate - that same Andreas Singer. Gentges, in turn, did not want that, which would not have been so bad because the Baden-Württemberg law provides a solution for such standoffs: the matter is referred to the judge selection committee. Gentges chose a different path. She insisted on her candidate and sued the Presidential Council. The matter lies with the Stuttgart Administrative Court, the legal outcome is open. But if the minister really wanted to get the reputation of being a nepotist or cousin, she has already done everything necessary to do so.



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