Civil Courts

There are three levels of civil jurisdiction in Monaco.

Jurisdictions of First Instance

Justice of the Peace: dealing with small claims under €4,600

Court of First Instance: ruling on civil and commercial litigation and certain areas of administrative disputes involving the State or public bodies, on claims in excess of €4,600.

Joint Tribunals: the Labor Tribunal (ruling on disputes arising from contracts of employment) and the Rent Arbitration Commission (commercial or housing matters).

Court of Appeal

The Court of Appeal has general jurisdiction over appeals.

The Court of First Instance may also hear appeals in certain circumstances provided for in law (such as appeals against rulings by the Justice of the Peace, the Labor Tribunal and arbitration rulings).

Court of Revision

The Court of Revision acts as a Court of Cassation.

Its role is purely to ensure that lower courts have correctly applied the law. The Court of Revision may decide to confirm or quash the decision brought before it. In certain cases, the Court may also remit a case for re-examination after further findings.

Oversight of constitutionality and legality

The Supreme Court has special jurisdiction:

> in constitutional affairs (in particular proceedings for annulment, determination of validity and action for compensation concerning infringement of constitutional rights and freedoms)

> and in administrative affairs (in particular proceedings for annulment of decisions taken by administrative authorities and administrative acts).

It also rules on conflicts of jurisdiction.

Criminal courts

Crimes and criminal offences are investigated by an Examining Magistrate whose orders are subject to the oversight of the Chamber of the Court of Appeal.

Criminal judgements are delivered:

> on contraventions: by the Justice of the Peace sitting as a single judge in the Police Court

> on misdemeanours: by the Court of First Instance sitting on penal matters

> on crimes: by the Criminal Court, consisting in part of jurors drawn by lot from a list of adult Monegasque citizens.

The decisions of these courts are open to appeal.

Before all of these jurisdictions, the functions devolving upon the public office responsible for law enforcement and the preservation and defence of the higher interests of society are exercised by a single body of magistrates, the Public Prosecutor’s Office, which is headed by the Public Prosecutor (“Procureur Général”).

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