North Cyprus Law | The Powers of the TRNC Court of Appeal

North Cyprus Law | The Powers of the TRNC Court of AppealNorth Cyprus Law | The Powers of the TRNC Court of Appeal

The Court of Appeal which is situated in Nicosia (lefkoşa) and is composed of 3 Supreme Court Judges is the highest appellate court in the TRNC State and it has jurisdiction to hear and determine, subject to the provisions of the TRNC Constitution and of any laws and Rules of Court made thereunder, all appeals from a decision of the TRNC first instance courts (i.e district or assize court). The Court of Appeal would give a final judgement, which means there is nowhere else to go for domestic remedies in the TRNC. But of course the European Court of Human Rights is always there if needed.

Also the Court of Appeal can at times be a court of first instance and has exclusive jurisdiction to issue some orders. Examples of these orders can be summarised as follows; habaes corpus, to effect release from unlawful detention; mandamus, to secure the exercise of powers; prohibition, to prohibit the effects of a wrong decision of any court or of any authority exercising power of a judicial nature; quo warranto, to inquire as to upon what authority an office is being held; and certiorari, to quash a decision of any court or an authority exercising quasi-judicial powers.

As I have explained above if you are not satisfied and think that the judgement of any district or assize court is wrong then you can apply to the Court of Appeal to have the said judgement quashed. Once the Court of Appeal has heard your case they would either quash the judgement or ratify the judgement or send the case back to the court it came from (i.e district court) for a retrial. If the case is sent for a retrial, the judgement which has been given after the retrial can be appealed again to the Court of Appeal for a final judgement. The Court of Appeal does have the power to hear a witness but in general practice a hearing at the Court of Appeal would only be speeches or statements made to the Court of Appeal by the parties to the case or their Advocates. If you take a look at the previous judgements of the Court of Appeal which are written in the Turkish language, you would realise that the Court of Appeal states that in general they cannot judge if the witness which testified at the hearing of the district court was honest or not and therefore generally prefer not to say or do much at the Court of Appeal about the judgements or founding’s of the district courts on a witnesses honesty. Of course this at times makes it hard (but never impossible) to have quashed a bad judgement or decision which mostly relies on witness statements.

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