The coronavirus pandemic and the economic consequences it has caused are unprecedented. For the first time ever, we are dealing with the phenomenon of a global pandemic which has undermined the foundations of market economy to such a considerable extent. The fight against it has made it necessary for the govern-ments of individual countries to make decisions radically restricting the freedom of conducting business activity – including decisions to suspend the functioning of particular economic sectors. The imposed lockdown meant that a great many of employers had to completely abandon their operations or radically limit the scope of the activities they were involved in virtually overnight, which obviously had an impact on their ability to make any profit and on their financial situation. At the same time, limiting or even cancelling the possibilities of doing business was a threat to the labour market, heralding its collapse and therefore an increase in the rate of unemployment. This is because a natural consequence of such a situa-tion is that employers decide to dismiss employees. A real threat of an economic crisis of an unparalleled scale prompted the governments of most countries to take far-reaching measures to save the economy. The Polish government imposed restrictions on the functioning of many econo-mic sectors as early as in March 2020. At the same time, there began legislative work on the so-called Anti-Crisis Shield.4 The resulting act, passed on 31 March 2020, was subsequently amended several times. The subsequent editions of the Anti-Crisis Shield featured regulations aimed at, among others, employers affected by the coronavirus pandemic. The purpose of this text is to provide a comprehensive analysis of the measures incorporated in the Anti-Crisis Shield in order to protect the interests of employers, i.e. the solutions related to the situation of employment of employees. The starting point will be an attempt to establish the rationale guiding the legislator when introducing these solutions. Then, the analysis will focus on the instruments used by the legislator to provide the protection of employers’ interests – and on the subject of protection. Finally, an attempt to evaluate the effects of these regulations will be made.
Social labour inspectorate, as a special form of unionised representation of employees’ interests, has the right to control employers in the field of their compliance with the provisions of the labour law in place. Exercising this controlling function involves the need for a social labour inspector to access the information and docu-ments that may contain personal data of employees. The study advances a thesis that a social labour inspector is an entity processing personal data of employees on behalf of a company trade union organisation – who is the controller of these data, and the grounds for the processing of personal data of employees are the relevant provisions of the GDPR. The theses proposed in the study aim to challenge the Constitutional Tribunal’s standpoint regarding a social labour inspector’s right to obtain personal data. The problems addressed in the study have not been a sub-ject of the existing views of legal academics and commentators, nor have they been covered in the established line of judicial decisions yet.
The study discusses the principles of awarding benefits under the Company Social Benefits Fund (original Polish name: Zakładowy Fundusz Świadczeń Społecznych) from the point of view of legitimacy of the processing of personal data. The con-ducted analysis covers the present legal framework in force in Poland, taking the European Union law – GDPR – into consideration. Given the local specificity of the institution in question, the article does not include references to regulations adopted in other countries. The article proposes two theses. One is that the award-ing of benefits under the CSBF with the participation of representatives of the stakeholder community, especially in the area of hardship benefits, should be based on anonymised applications. Documents proving the circumstances acting as the grounds to apply for a benefit to be true should be verified by an employer’s authorised representative in charge of employee welfare initiatives. The other thesis is that copies of documents proving the legitimacy of application for a social benefit, especially in the area of hardship benefits, should be kept by the data controller – meaning the employer – for a period during which Polish tax authori-ties and Social
Insurance Institution (ZUS) may verify the legitimacy of application of the impost law. In this case, this refers to the practice of non-payment of the tax on the awarded benefits and the social insurance contributions. The conclusions the said theses lead to are significant to the practical application of law, and because they are controversial, they may pave the way for a further academic discourse.
The article portrays the ballot paper as a constitutional instrument of electoral democracy. The authors argue that the result of an election often depends on the form, the content, and the method of filling out the ballot. It is shown that a ballot is an election instrument of standard form, by means of which a voter votes for candidates and/or lists of candidates, and which later allows to establish the election results. It is concluded that the definition and classification of ballot types has not only theoretical but also practical value. In particular, this issue is of great practical significance in four cases: 1) simultaneous elections of differing types (sometimes including a simultaneous vote at a referendum); election of candidates for elective offices under different types of electoral systems or different types of territorial constituencies; 3) the vote count and establishing the outcome of the election; 4) prosecuting criminals for the illegal use of ballots.
The 2018 amendment of the Polish Electoral Code established the institution of electoral officials, who replaced the institution of electoral plenipotentiaries, existing since 1998. One of the main differences between the two institutions is that electoral officials may not work at commune offices in charge of preparing and holding election in the area of their jurisdiction. The aim of the adopted solution was to isolate local government administration from the election process. The article offers a critical analysis of the institution of electoral officials. The subject matter of the discussion is both the legal regulation and the conclusions drawn from the examination of the institution in question, conducted by the Stefan Batory Foundation after the end of the 2018 local government elections, when the electoral officials fulfilled their statutory duty for the first time. The discussion leads to the conclusion that the establishment of the institution of electoral officials was not well thought out, and actually took place without appropriate consultation. The provisions of the Electoral Code are often vague. They have not been clarified to a sufficient extent in the resolutions adopted by the National Electoral Commission either. It is reasonable to have electoral officials appointed for a six-year term of office by the Head of the National Electoral Office. What is surprising, however, is that electoral officials may run for an office during elections taking place in a constituency outside of their area of activity as well as engage in election cam paigns – except for their own campaigns – while they should remain completely impartial during the election. The vague status of electoral officials and of the principles of their remuneration made it very difficult to attract individuals willing to perform this function. The headcount originally assumed had to be reduced by half; now it is 2,600. It is also necessary to reconsider the number of electoral officials assigned to individual communes. A major flaw of the adopted regulation is the lack of a clear division of duties and responsibilities between electoral official and communes. All this casts a bad light on the institution of electoral officials. It is argued that they were poorly prepared to perform the duties they were entrusted with. They also lacked the necessary theoretical knowledge and were not familiar with local conditions and constraints. Therefore, instead of helping, they made the work of commune officials only harder. But the call for dissolving the institution altogether is not legitimate. It is necessary to return to the previous solution, where the electoral officials in a commune were the officials working at commune offices, regular employees of these basic local government units. In communes with larger populations, there may be even more such officials. It is essential to reinforce the status of electoral officials, which is why it is important to clearly definthe nature of their relationships with the commune heads (town/city mayors) as well as to strengthen their position and grant them authority in the field of duties carried out as part of elections and referenda over other commune officials. It is also requisite to appoint them for terms of office of a particular number of years, and remunerate them in fixed monthly amounts – with the amounts increased in periods of preparing and holding elections or referenda. Only this way will it be possible to have a proper Electoral Official Service composed of professional commune officials specialising in organising and holding elections and referenda.
This article presents the general characteristics of the joint property of the spouses in family law and the possible ways of division. Particular attention was paid to the possibility of dividing them upon the request of one spouses in the divorce decree. In addition, the results of own research of court files explored in Warsaw in the 2016/2017 academic year regarding in which the court ruled on the division of joint property in a divorce decree and after a divorce. Finally, the article also contains conclusions and observations constructed after the conducted research.
The purpose of this article is, first of all, to answer the question of how the court determines parental authority in divorce judgments in comparison with judgments separating. It was also analyzed whether the court, in divorce matters and in matters relating to separation, duly and thoroughly carries out evidence proceed-ings, using all available and adequate evidence in a given case. This article contains theoretical considerations regarding parental authority in Polish family law. In addition, the article analyzes the author’s own research – the files concerning cases in which the Court settled the parental authority of divorced parents and spouses separated.
The purpose of this article is to present the course of the proceedings regarding the limitation of parental authority by placing the child in a care and educational institution based on the analysis of the results of own-study research. A very important subject of the research was evidence collected in the examined cases. Examined among others, the most frequent factors that pose a threat to the child’s good. This article also takes into account theoretical considerations on parental authority and its limitations.
The goal of this article is to highlight the role of a school, here understood as an educational facility, during the course of parental rights termination proceedings. There can be no doubt that the process of upbringing, especially the domestic factors and intense stimulus to which the child is subjected translate into patterns of behaviour and the way the child functions at school. Notably, prolonged learn-ing difficulties among children or periods in which the child presents complete disregard for societal norms and a lack of discipline should be a clear signal for the teachers and counsellors to review the family environment of the pupil in question. The article covers data regarding the school’s participation in the parental rights termination proceedings – e.g. opinions and recommendations formulated by the schools, teacher’s testimonies and children scorecards which reflect the educational progress of the child. The materials used include source materials (acts and ordinances, written opinions, Supreme and common court rulings), results of own research – casefile review based on a targeted casefile research questionnaire.
Rule of law is one of the most fundamental values of the European Union and the issues related thereto have become one of the top priorities not only in the EU agenda but also in the EU policies of most of the Member States, including Sweden. This is due to the increasing integration, the growing dependence of the functioning of the entire European Union on the way how the system of justice works in different Member States, and the concern over the condition of the rule of law in these Member States. In recent years, the European Union has been making use of some older instruments, whose aim is to control and improve the observance of the rule of law (including Art. 7 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union), and has adopted some new solutions too – the European rule of law mechanism and the regulation regarding rule of law conditionality, related to the new EU budget. The need to work out effective procedures to determine the condition of the rule of law and to uphold the main standards of the system of justice in all EU Member States is becoming more and more urgent and remains one of the greatest challenges faced by the European Union to be dealt with by the Swedish government.
In the judgement C-403/16 Soufiane El Hassani v. Polish Foreign Office European Court of Justice noticed that provisions of internal law cannot limit the right to judical-review established in art. 32 par. 3 of Visa Code. The regulation must be interpreted in context of EU Charter of Fundamental Rights. Meanwhile the sentence was answer to question of Polish Supreme Administrative Court and it arose under Administrative Courts Proceedings Act which prohibits performing judicial review over visa decisions. The aim of the paper is to explain that judicial review at those issues may be effectively performed by common courts, without damaging visa-applicants rights. The possibility comes from wide definition of civil case in code of civil procedure and attribution of common courts in some public administration cases.
This article seeks to explore the issue of the required form of agreement on the transfer of rights and obligations of a party to a contractual relationship by a third party, which in the Polish legal system functions as an innominate contract and is more common in foreign legislations (Vertragsübernahme, transfer of contract, cession de contract). This issue has been analysed taking into account the various possible configurations of parties to such an agreement as well as the various legal natures of the rights and obligations transferred. So far, this matter has not been thoroughly discussed in the Polish legal literature. According to the author, in line with the unity theory, an agreement on the transfer of rights and obligations of a party to a contractual relationship should be classified as a single legal transaction and not as two separate (independent) transactions of claim assignment (Article 509 of the Civil Code) and debt transfer (division theory). Therefore, it requires a written form otherwise being invalid. This requirement applicable to an entire agreement results from Article 522 sentence 1 of the Civil Code; it also meets less strict formal requirements regarding claim assignment (Article 511 of the Civil Code). In this paper, the author also discusses the question of whether Article 77 § 1 of the Civil Code and pactum de forma regarding amendments to an agreement (Article 76 sentence 1 of the Civil Code) apply to the form of the agreement in question.
In accordance with art. 55 of Directive 2012/34/EU establishing a single European railway area, each Member State must establish a single regulatory authority for the railway sector. In Poland, tasks of this body are carried out by the President of the Office of Rail Transport (UTK). Changes in position and tasks of this authority are associated with implementation of Fourth Railway Package, six legal acts which means a continuation of reforms of rail market in Europe. 4th Railway Package imposes new obligations on regulators, i.e. in matters related to rail traffic management, and planned or unplanned maintenance works on the lines. In the package it is also proposed a new model of cooperation between national regulatory bodies and European Union Railway Agency. National authorities may, among others, ask European Union Railway Agency for an opinion on safety and interoperability aspects. European Union Railway Agency may also carry out a visit into a Member State. In addition, President of UTK is also polish national safety authority and is the competent authority to issue a single safety certificate. In tasks of the national safety authority, President of UTK is also obliged to cooperate with the Agency The purpose of this article is to present new obligations imposed on the Office of Rail Transport in relation to implementation of 4th railway package, in scope of both roles.
The aim of the article is to offer an insight into the problem of observance of human rights at sea in situations of fighting piracy and armed robbery against vessels. The analysis has been conducted using the example of the situation in the Gulf of Aden and piracy off the coast of Somalia. The authors have analysed international legal regulations in the field of the law of the sea and human rights, with a particular consideration of the observance and protection of human rights depending on the maritime zone (territorial sea, contiguous zone, and high sea) where these rights are violated. The subject matter of the observance of human rights in the context of maritime areas has not been so far a matter addressed in Polish-language scientific publications. Yet, given its special social and legal significance (e.g. in the light of the migration crisis in the Mediterranean Sea basin), it seems necessary to bring it to attention. In the conclusions, the authors argue that the adopted regulations affecting piracy and acts of armed robbery against vessels provide only a framework and that it is crucial to establish specific procedures to deal with pirates at an international level (considering the international standards of protection of human rights).
The purpose of the article is to discuss the employee’s right to daily and weekly rest regulated in the Labour Code and having its sources in European law. The study presents the scope of standards resulting from EU treaties, directives and recommendations, which constituted a kind of road map for shaping Polish provisions in this area. Detailed analysis of art. 132 and 133 of the Labour Code shows whereas their interpretation and adopted case-law, draws attention to the shortcomings of the established norms that appear during their application in practice and also provides the basis for indicating de lege lata and de lege ferenda conclusions.
The study is an attempt to present the situation of Poland and Lithuania after their accession to the European Union, and of the evolution of social assessment of the membership in the Union by Poles. A particularly important moment is the transition from looking at the EU from the point of view of the material benefits associated with the accession to looking at the European Community as a community of values, one that guarantees European solidarity and equal opportunities, also in the material sphere. The authors consider whether the national (and nationalist) sentiments, along with demanding attitudes in Poland towards the states of “the old union” constitute a threat to the adoption of common values and the role of Poland in the European community.