Legal System of the Republic of Finland

General information | Finnish legal system

Finnish legal system is a civil law. However, EU law is directly applicable and takes precedence over national legislation.

The Finnish legal system has developed in close connection with that of the other Nordic countries. Above all most influential has been Swedish legislation due to the common historical past of the two countries. Therefore, to some extent the Finnish legal system is generally the same as that of other Nordic states.

The legal system is based on the principle of the rule of law. Furthermore, general European legal traditions are followed in Finland. Such traditions are the fundamental rights of the citizen and the sanctity of law.

Sources of Finnish legislation | Statutory System

The prime source of Finnish legislation is the written law. Therefore, Finland has a statutory legal system. Further, the most essential source of domestic legislation is Parliamentary Acts as well as decrees and orders issued by the government or ministries.

Court system | Civil and Administrative Courts

As enacted in the Finnish Constitution, judicial power belongs to independent courts of law. At the top of the system are the Supreme Court and the Supreme Administrative Court.

Furthermore, Finnish court system can be separated into two categories. Firstly, general courts that deal with civil and criminal matters. Secondly, administrative courts that mainly deal with disputes between a public authority and private individuals. Further to this, special courts also exist: the Market Court, the Labor Court, the Insurance Court and the High Court of Impeachment.

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*This article is for general information purposes only and does not constitute a legal advice.