Sources of Spanish Law

National law – SP – The Spanish Legal System – chapter 1

The main source of the Spanish Legal System is the Civil Code, and the jurisprudence stablishes the Supreme Court to interpret and apply law, costumes and general legal rights.  Tribunals are stablished by the Spanish Constitution (1978), which highlights the principle of jurisdictional unity in the organisation and functioning of tribunals. Judges and Tribunals have their work divided and they can only work in the cases where law stablishes they should.

The Organic Law of Judicial Power (article 122 of the Spanish Constitution) determines three main parts of the Justice System:

  • Territorial aspect: division of Spain in Autonomic Communities created by regions. From that division, each court and tribunal has concrete power in their community. However, the National Audience, the Supreme Court and the Central Court have national power.
  • Unipersonal or Collegiate character of the Organs: all organs are unipersonal except the Supreme Court, National Audience, Superior Courts of Justice and the Provincial Audiences.
  • Competency aspect: it is possible to divide four big aspects as to the topics related to justice: civil, penal, administrative and social. Additionally, the Military Jurisdiction has its own regulation. There are not specialised courts but some topics (such as gender violence, issues related to underage…) have a specialisation even if they are under ordinary jurisdiction. (European Justice)
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