Seven years and three months to have a final sentence in a civil case, twice as long as in France. A mass of “pending” files that in 2020 grew by 3% compared to the previous year, exceeding 1,600,000. The reform of the Minister of Justice Marta Cartabia, who arrived in the Council of Ministers, aims to cut these times by 40% in five years; only a little less ambitious is the target set for criminal trials, which will have to be reduced by 25% over the same period. It’s a real one sixth grade climb what the Italian justice system has before it, a revolution never achieved in the past but which is now an indispensable condition for Europe to grant the money provided by the Recovery Fund.
The comparison between times of the Italian trial and those of other European states was carried out by Cepej (Commission for the efficiency of justice of the EU). The latest report was released last November and is based on 2018 data. By this date the Brussels experts had estimated the average duration of one civil case in Italy in its three levels of judgment (court, Court of Appeal, cassation) in 2,655 days, equal to 7 years and three months. In France the same process requires 3 years and 4 months (1.2212 days), in Spain 1,238 days and in Sweden 377 days. The Observatory dethe Italian Ministry of Justice provides more updated data, al 2020 but concerning only the first two levels of judgment: for an ordinary civil or work case between the court and the Court of Appeal it is necessary to wait 1,310 days, approximately 3 and a half years. The same source warns that the “backlog” of the trials, after years in which it had been slowly decreasing, has started to grow again, marking in 2020 + 3.1% .
Also in the sector of criminal justice the year of Covid coincided with an increase in pending processes, albeit slight: they have in fact passed from 1,152,000 to 1,185,000 after years of steady decline. According to data from 2019, between preliminary investigations and the sentence of the Supreme Court, it is necessary to wait 1,600 days in this case, with peaks exceeding 2,200 in Rome, Naples and Reggio Calabria. Again according to the Cepej report in Italy are needed 310 days for a first-degree criminal sentence against i 117 of Germany oi 163 of Spain oi 72 of Great Britain.
The Minister Cartabia, as mentioned, he proposed to drastically reduce waiting times, both in civil and criminal justice. Speaking to the group leaders of the Justice Committee of the Chamber on 10 May, the Keeper of Seals confirmed that she wanted to cut the path of the three degrees of judgment of the 40% in the civil and del 25% in the penal one. «The time factor – said the minister at that time – is at the center of the concerns of citizens, European institutions, economic actors. The time factor is and must be at the heart of the reform proposals we are undertaking ». Malfunction that generates two problems: many processes are canceled by the prescription and the fundamental right of citizens to the reasonable length of trials.
July 8, 2021 (change July 8, 2021 | 14:06)
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