The three-week orientation program for newly-appointed justices of the High Anticorruption Court (HAC) and its Appellate Chamber is underway. The orientation program is organized by the National School of Judges with support of the USAID New Justice Program, EU Anti-Corruption Initiative (EUACI), EU Project “Pravo – Justice”, EU Advisory Mission (EUAM), “Support to Judicial Reform Project” Canada and International Development Law Organization (IDLO).
On April 15-16, 2019, the justices will improve their opinion writing skills.
“The quality of court decision writing is a major criterion of the quality of justice “, emphasized the importance of this stage of the orientation program USAID New Justice Program Chief of Party David Vaughn. “We have allocated substantial time to this topic as proper reasoning of a court decision and putting it in a language which is easily understandable to everyone including those without legal education is one of the prerequisites for building the public trust in the judiciary”.
During these two days, justices, with the engagement of Ukrainian and international experts, will get involved in various aspects of decisions preparation in panels, specifically, reasoning, appointing the author, conducting conferences/joint meetings in a case; writing joint opinions, dissenting opinions, concurring opinions. Besides, they will analyze the opinions of an investigative judge as a special form of a court opinion and unique aspects of opinion writing in criminal cases. Invited experienced specialists in court opinion writing – justices from the USA, Canada, and Ukraine – will share their knowledge and provide practical recommendations to the program participants.
The USAID New Justice Program has considerable experience in developing training programs and handbooks on judicial opinion writing. The first handbook on this topic in Ukraine was developed by experts of its predecessor program in the year of 2010. It was supplemented and updated in 2013 and 2016. The latest version of this handbook was distributed together with training materials of the orientation program to HACС justices.