Psychological test in the appointment of magistrates, the SJC proposes in an analysis for better functioning of the judiciary

22-11-2022 13:34

The SJC presented a draft analysis for better functioning of the judiciary in relation to the appointment, selection and career development of magistrates.

An initial version of the document has been developed in the framework of the project “Strengthening the Professionalism in the Judiciary, funded by the Norwegian Financial Mechanism (NFF) 2014-2021.

It contains proposals to increase public confidence in the judiciary; transparency and broad public representation in the selection, appointment, promotion and transfer of magistrates; efficiency, quality and speed in the conduct of procedures for the evaluation, appointment and career development of magistrates, including administrative heads.

With regard to the conduct of competitions for filling a post, emphasis is placed on the establishment of a permanent Selection Committee for appointments to the respective college of the SJC, which should deal exclusively with the conduct of competitions for filling magistrates’ posts.

And more – the vacant posts for judges, prosecutors and investigators to be filled on the basis of separate competitions for each vacant or to be vacant post. The competition committees should be of the same composition and with a fixed mandate, which are formed for each of the different levels of the judiciary – court, prosecution and investigation. The procedures shall have criteria made public in advance, respecting the principles of access to participation for all eligible candidates.

And also – to explicitly provide for access of candidates to the attestations prepared by them in connection with the procedures.

On the basis of the analysis of the procedures for the career development of magistrates in Norway and the Netherlands, a proposal is formed to introduce an additional requirement for candidates for initial appointment, namely to possess high personal non-legal qualities necessary to perform the functions of a judge, prosecutor or investigator, as well as to conduct a psychological test with them.

The analysis was discussed at a round table with the participation of Boyan Magdalinchev – representing the Supreme Judicial Council and head of the project, Atanaska Disheva – member of the SJC, Judge Doug Brathall – expert from the Norwegian Judicial Administration, experts, representatives of the judiciary and the Ministry of Justice.

More about the other proposals, including those related to improving the attestation procedures for magistrates, can be found here: