30 May 2014

BOOKS: Intersentia - Lokin, Milo and Smits (eds), Tradition, Codification and Unification / Uzelac and van Rhee (eds), Nobody's Perfect: Comparative Essays on Appeals and other Means of Recourse against Judicial Decisions in Civil Matters

Intersentia has published the following:

200 years ago many civil law jurisdictions adhered to exclusive national codifications of private law, and abandoned the old Ius Commune. Other jurisdictions in the civilian tradition did not engage in codifying private law, and continued along lines of authoritative opinions, case law and fragmented legislation. In our contemporary days the shades of national law slowly melt away, and we imagine a future where new common laws will continue to take shape. This book deals with this mirror image and explores the law in its everlasting tension between tradition and change. Historic and comparative analyses from European, Latin- American and South-African jurisdictions provide us with perspectives on the role of substance, methodology, institutions as well as individuals in developments of law towards the future.

Nobody’s perfect. Nevertheless, public confidence in the justice system depends on the belief that decisions made in the judicial processes are reasonably correct and accurate. Since no one has a monopoly on ultimate correctness, a large part of trust in the correct and objective nature of outcomes of the judicial process is rooted in the trust in the mechanisms of quality control. However, the specific nature of the judicial process, encapsulated in the principle of judicial independence and in the right to fair and swift adjudication, requires specific control mechanisms that have to achieve a sensitive balance between various aims and goals.

Based on these observations, the present book focuses on the systems of appellate control of court judgments. The intention of the editors is to explore the relationship between the different approaches to appeals in national civil justice systems and their impact on the overall efficiency and effectiveness of the legal protection of individual rights. Recognising that any approach to appeal has to strike a balance between the ideals of correctness, legitimacy and impeccable legal reasoning, on the one hand, and the ideals of legal certainty, effectiveness and efficiency, on the other, the contributors to this book were invited to discuss how contemporary justice systems deal with this issue. This allows an evaluation of whether the issues in debate are rather disparate or whether, on the contrary, the procedural philosophies and approaches to appeal in different legal systems are converging.

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