Right to judicial protection and access to court in the era of digitalization: value of experience in common law countries for Russia

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Authors: Elena Gritsenko, Yulia Yaluner

DOI: 10.21128/1812-7126-2020-3-97-129

Keywords: access to court; common law countries; e-justice; information technologies; judicial information systems; public and transparent hearing; right to judicial protection; the Russian Federation


The widespread use of information and communication technologies (ICT) in state activities (including justice) makes the topic of legal consequences of informatization and digitalization of justice extremely relevant. In particular, one of the more challenging tasks is to examine the phenomenon of electronic justice (e-justice) and to revise in that regard the Russian legislation governing the judiciary and legal proceedings. Legal issues concerning the implementation of e-justice have more than once become the subject of consideration in various scholarly papers on procedural law. However, these issues undoubtedly are fundamentally and, above all, constitutionally significant, since they directly affect the fundamental right to judicial protection and access to court, as well as a number of other fundamental rights and constitutional principles. In the process of informatization and digitalization of justice such principles as the independence of the court and judges, accessibility of justice, fair trial, openness, publicity and transparency of justice, the principle of adversarial trial must be taken into account. Undeniably, information security and data protection are very important, however, a balance must be struck between, on the one hand, the right to privacy and the protection of personal data, and, on the other hand, the right to access to information on the court activities. The search for this balance, as well as for the satisfactory of conditions and rules for the use of e-justice in Russia, can be more effective with the study and analysis of the experience of common law countries that have a long history of e-justice implementation (e.g. the USA, the Commonwealth of Australia, the United Kingdom), although one shall mind the differences in the judicial systems of Russia and of the said common law countries, in their models of separation of powers, in the ways electronic justice is regulated (vertically and horizontally). Based on a thorough examination of the ways e-justice is implemented in the US, the UK and Australia, the authors of this paper arrive at some conclusions concerning Russian experience in this area. In particular, the authors conduct a deep and comprehensive assessment of the issues concerning the coordination of development of justice, to make common approaches to the implementation of electronic justice in federal and regional courts and to improve the legal regulation of electronic justice in Russian Federation and its regions. The comparative analysis sheds new light on the risks of violation of the right of access to information about court activities, the right to fair trial, adversarial trial, the right to access to the court during the informatization and digitalization of justice.

About the authors: Elena Gritsenko – Doctor of Sciences in Law, Professor, Department of Constitutional Law, State University of Saint Petersburg, Saint Petersburg, Russia; Yulia Yaluner – Ph.D. student, Department of constitutional law, Saint Petersburg State University, Saint Petersburg, Russia.

Citation: Gritsenko E., Yaluner Yu. (2020) Pravo na sudebnuyu zashchitu i dostup k sudu v usloviyakh informatizatsii i tsifrovizatsii: znachenie opyta stran ob­shchego prava dlya Rossii [Right to judicial protection and access to court in the era of digitalization: value of experience in common law countries for Russia]. Sravnitel’noe konstitutsionnoe obozrenie, vol. 29, no. 3, pp. 97–129. (In Russian).


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