a) Hungary / b) Constitutional Court / c) / d) 07-04-2011 / e) 29/2011 / f) / g) Magyar Közlöny (Official Gazette), 2011/37 / h) CODICES (Hungarian).
Keywords of the Systematic Thesaurus:
General Principles - Certainty of the law.
Institutions - Executive bodies - The civil service - Reasons for exclusion.
Fundamental Rights - Economic, social and cultural rights - Right of access to the public service.
Keywords of the alphabetical index:
Civil servant, rights and obligations / Civil servant, dismissal, reason.
Civil servants (those working for state institutions and local government authorities) cannot be dismissed from office without a reason being provided.
I. In December 2010 the governing two-thirds majority amended the Act on Civil Servants, allowing employers to dismiss civil servants without providing reasons for their action. Several trade unions and civil rights NGOs challenged this amendment before the Constitutional Court.
II. The Constitutional Court made reference to its earlier decision on the dismissal of government officials, observing that the legal frameworks for appointing and dismissing civil servants should be clearly regulated by the Act.
The Court did not question that the need to increase the efficiency, performance and standards of public administration might justify making it easier to dismiss civil servants, but emphasised that the legislature should develop rules to create a balance between the governmentís objectives and the protection of civil servantsíconstitutional rights. It held that the possibility of firing a civil servant without giving any reason whatsoever is a disproportionate restriction on the constitutional right safeguarded by Article 70.6 of the Constitution to take public office. The Court noted that the Act should ensure protection in the event of unjustified dismissal of civil servants. The lack of normative rules concerning the dismissal of civil servants makes it impossible for ordinary court judges to decide on the legality of a dismissal. This violates the right to seek legal remedy. The Constitutional Court therefore annulled the legislation ex nunc.
- Decision no. 8/2011.