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  • Interpretation
  • No.175
  • Date
  • 1982/05/25
  • Issue
    • Shall the Judicial Yuan propose and present statutory bills to the Legislative Yuan concerning matters within its authority?
  • Holding
    •        Because the Judicial Yuan is the supreme judicial agency of the country, it naturally has the authority to propose and present statutory bills to the Legislative Yuan with regard to matters within its authority based on the constitutional system of “separation of powers” and “checks and balances” among the five branches of the Central Government.
      
  • Reasoning
    •        To resolve the issue of whether the Judicial Yuan may propose and present statutory bills to the Legislative Yuan concerning matters within its authority, J. Y. Interpretation No. 3 has provided this Court with some guidance. Paragraph 3 of J. Y. Interpretation No. 3 states: “As stated in the Preamble, our Constitution was established upon the teachings bequeathed by Dr. Sun Yat-sen, who founded the Republic of China. Five branches were established in accordance with Article 53 (the Executive Yuan), Article 62 (the Legislative Yuan), Article 77 (the Judicial Yuan), Article 83 (the Examination Yuan), and Article 90 (the Control Yuan). Each branch is the highest state agency independently discharging its duties, and is equal to the other branches, within the scope of each respective power as originally bestowed by the Constitution. As far as the discharge of duties is concerned, it is the responsibility of the Control Yuan and Judicial Yuan, as with the Examination Yuan, to respectively propose and present statutory bills to the Legislative Yuan with regard to matters within its authority. While the Examination Yuan may propose and present statutory bills to the Legislative Yuan concerning matters within its authority, there is no reason for the Constitution to purposefully omit or intentionally preclude the granting of the same presentment power to the Judicial Yuan and Control Yuan. Whereas it is within the exclusive authority of the Legislative Yuan to pass or veto a statutory bill, it is reasonable and not in violation of any law for the other branches which are more familiar with matters under their respective authorities to express their advisory opinion and to propose and present statutory bills to the Legislative Yuan. Paragraph 3 of J. Y. Interpretation No. 3 clearly indicates that the Judicial Yuan may propose and present statutory bills to the Legislative Yuan with regard to matters within its authority. Because the Judicial Yuan is the supreme judicial agency of the country, it naturally has the authority to propose and present statutory bills to the Legislative Yuan with regard to matters within its authority based on the constitutional system of “separation of powers” and “checks and balances” among the five branches of the Central Government to enact proper laws and regulations. The proposal and presentment of statutory bills by the Judicial Yuan to the Legislative Yuan is merely the initiative step of the legislative process, not the final legislative enactment. It is a proper exercise of the legislative power and the judicial power for the Judicial Yuan to propose and present statutory bills to the Legislative Yuan based on its practical experience and needs in adjudicating litigations. 
      
    •        In addition, it is a common goal of all modern civilized nations to protect the rights and interests of their nationals by respecting the judicial decisions and granting more authorities and duties to the judicial agencies. In order for the judicial legislations enacted to meet the actual needs of the people and to function properly, most of the supreme judicial agencies of the Anglo-American law nations are equipped with the authority to propose and present statutory bills to the supreme legislative agency of the country. Many supreme judicial agencies of the civil law countries are also equipped with a similar authority. Recently, the constitutions of many Central and South American countries have specified that the supreme judicial agency of the country may propose and present statutory bills to the supreme legislative agency with regard to matters within its authority. Therefore, it is evident that the opinion set forth in J. Y. Interpretation No. 3 is not only consistent with the legislative intent of our constitution, but also is in accordance with the trend of other national constitutions. Subsequent to the separation of power between the adjudication and the prosecution, the workloads borne by the Judicial Yuan have become increasingly heavy. To facilitate judicial reform, to establish the Judicial Yuan, the Constitutional Court and tribunals inferior to the Constitutional Court to adjudicate civil, criminal and administrative cases and disciplinary actions against the civil servants pursuant to Articles 77, 78 and 82 of the Constitution, and to exercise its authority to uniformly interpret the provisions of the Constitution, the Judicial Yuan may propose and present statutory bills to the Legislative Yuan with regard to the organization of its subordinated judicial agencies and the matters governed by its judicial authorities. 
      
    • *Translated by Li-Chih Lin, Esq., J.D.
      
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