Decision of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress on Improving the System of People's Assessors

Decision of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress on Improving the System of People's Assessors  (2004) 
Standing Committee of the National People's Congress

(Adopted at the 11th Meeting of the Standing Committee of the Tenth National People's Congress on August 28, 2004)

Decision of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress on Improving the System of People's Assessors

The following Decision is made in order to improve the system of people's assessors, ensure citizens to participate in judicial activities according to law and promote judicial justice:

Article 1

People's assessors shall be appointed in accordance with this Decision, they shall participate in judicial activities of the people's courts according to law and enjoy equal rights with the judges, except that they cannot serve as presiding judges.

Article 2

The trial of the following cases of first instance by the people's courts shall be conducted by a collegial panel composed of people's assessors and judges, with the exception of the trial of cases to which the summary procedure is applicable and cases otherwise provided for by law:

(1) criminal, civil and administrative cases which have a relatively greater bearing on the society; and

(2) cases where the defendants of criminal cases, the plaintiffs or defendants of civil cases, and the plaintiffs of administrative cases apply for the conduct of the trial by a collegial panel with the participation of people's assessors.

Article 3

When a case is to be tried by a collegial panel composed of people's assessors and judges, the number of people's assessors in the collegial panel shall be not less than one-third of the total number of the persons in the panel.

Article 4

A citizen serving as a people's assessor shall meet the following requirements:

(1) supporting the Constitution of the People's Republic of China;

(2) having reached the age of 23 years old;

(3) being of good conduct, and being impartial and upright; and

(4) being in good health.

A people's assessor shall generally be a graduate from a university or college at least.

Article 5

No one from the standing committee of a people's congress, a people's court, a people's procuratorate, a public security organ, a State security organ or a judicial administration organ and no practicing lawyer shall serve as a people's assessor.

Article 6

None of the following persons shall serve as a people's assessor:

(1) persons who have been subjected to criminal punishment for criminal offences; and

(2) persons who have been discharged from public employment.

Article 7

As to the number of people's assessors, a basic people's court shall, in light of the need for the trial of a case, advance a request to the standing committee of the people's congress at the same level for decision.

Article 8

A citizen who meets the requirements for a people's assessor may be recommended to the basic people's court by the unit to which he belongs or by the grass-roots organization at the place where his permanent residence is registered, or the citizen himself may make an application for the matter, and upon examination made by the basic people's court together with the judicial administration organ of the people's government at the same level, the president of the basic people's court shall put forth the name of the person selected for people's assessor to the standing committee of the people's congress at the same level for appointment.

Article 9

The term of office for people's assessors shall be five years.

Article 10

It is the right and obligation of people's assessors to participate in judicial activities according to law. The participation of the people's assessors in judicial activities according to law shall be protected by law.

People's courts shall, in accordance with law, ensure that the people's assessors participate in judicial activities.

The units to which the people's assessors belong or the grass-roots organizations at the place where their permanent residences are registered shall ensure that the people's assessors participate in judicial activities according to law.

Article 11

When participating in the trial of cases as members of a collegial panel, people's assessors shall independently exercise their right to vote as the establishment of facts and the application of law.

The principle of the minority being subordinate to the majority shall be practiced in the deliberation of cases by a collegial panel. Where people's assessors have differences of opinion with other component members of the collegial panel, such differences shall be put down in writing; and if necessary, the people's assessors may request the collegial panel to submit the case to the president of the people's court for decision as to whether to deliver the case to the judicial committee for discussion and decision.

Article 12

Withdraw shall be made by a people's assessor mutatis mutandis pursuant to the provisions of laws on the withdrawal of judges.

Article 13

When participating in judicial activities, people's assessors shall abide by the provisions on the duties performed by judges, keep judicial secrets, pay attention to judicial protocol and preserve judicial image.

Article 14

Where, according to law, the trial of a case by a basic People's court need to be conducted by a collegial panel with the participation of people's assessors, such people's assessors shall be decided on by random selection from their name list.

Where, according to law, the trial of a case by an intermediate people's court or a higher people's court need to be conducted by a collegial panel with the participation of people's assessors, such people's assessors shall be decided on by random selection from the name list of the people's assessors of the basic people's court in the city where the intermediate or higher People's court is located.

Article 15

Basic People's courts shall, together with the judicial administration organs of the people's governments at the same level, conduct training among the people's assessors in order to enhance the qualification of the people's assessors.

Article 16

People's assessors who have achieved significant successes or other outstanding deeds in their judicial work shall be commended and rewarded.

Article 17

Where a people's assessor is in any one of the following circumstances, which is proved to be true through investigation by the primary people's court, to which he belongs, together with the judicial administration organ of the people's government at the same level, the president of the primary people's court shall request the standing committee of the people's congress at the same level that the people's assessor is dismissed from service:

(1) he himself applies for resignation from the service;

(2) he refuses to participate in judicial activities without justifiable reasons, thus adversely affecting the normal process of the judicial work;

(3) he is in one of the circumstances as specified in Articles 5 and 6 of this Decision; and

(4) in violation of laws and regulations on judicial work, he resorts to malpractices for personal gains, thus leading to an erroneous judgment or other serious consequences.

If a people's assessor commits the act as specified in Subparagraph (4) of the preceding paragraph, which constitutes a crime, he shall be investigated for criminal responsibility according to law.

Article 18

With respect to the expenses paid for their transportation and meals by people's assessors in order to participate in judicial activities, the people's courts shall give subsidies.

During the period when the people's assessors who have work units participate in judicial activities, the units to which they belong shall not withhold or withhold in disguised form, their wages, bonuses and other welfare benefits.

During the period when the people's assessors who do not have fixed incomes participate in judicial activities, the people's courts shall give them subsidies on the basis of the number of their actual working days and, mutatis mutmandis, in accordance with the average monetary wage level of the local workers and staff members in the previous fiscal year.

Article 19

The subsidies, which the people's assessors are entitled to for their participation in judicial activities, and the expenses, which are entailed for implementation of the system of people's assessors by the people's courts and the judicial administration organs, shall be incorporated into the operational expenditures of the people's courts and the judicial administrative organs, and the governments at the corresponding level shall guarantee such expenditures.

Article 20

This Decision shall go into effect as of May 1, 2005.

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Original:

This work is in the public domain because it is exempted by Article 5 of Chinese copyright law. This exempts all Chinese government and judicial documents, and their official translations, from copyright. It also exempts simple factual information, and calendars, numerical tables, and other forms of general use and formulas.

Translation:

This work is in the public domain because it is exempted by Article 5 of Chinese copyright law. This exempts all Chinese government and judicial documents, and their official translations, from copyright. It also exempts simple factual information, and calendars, numerical tables, and other forms of general use and formulas.