The Constitutional Court first considered the question of whether the contested § 32 of the Pension Insurance Act, as amended, is inconsistent with Art. 52 of the Constitution. It began with the consideration that the expert literature gives the Collection of Laws an informational function, consisting of the fact that the Collection of Laws serves as the official source for legal regulations (see. K.Klíma and collective of authors, Komentáře k Ústavě a Listině [Commentary on the Constitution and the Charter], Pilsen, Vydavatelství a nakladatelství Aleš Čeněk, s.r.o., 2005, p. 281). Although Act no. 155/1995 Coll., on Pension Insurance, was – as mentioned above – amended fifteen times while it was in effect, and since 1995 the complete wording has not been promulgated in the Collection of Laws after any of the amendments, the Constitutional Court found that § 32 of the Pension Insurance Act, amended only by Act no. 425/2003 Coll. was still sufficiently easily understandable for a generally familiarity with the law, as a rule guiding the conduct of those for whom it is intended.
Equality is a relative category, which requires the removal of unjustified differences. Therefore, the principle of equal rights under Art. 1 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms, must be understood such that legal distinctions in the approach to certain rights may not be an expression or arbitrariness; however, it does not give rise to the conclusion that everyone must be granted every right.
A particular legal framework that gives an advantage to one group or category of persons compared to another, cannot, in and of itself, be said to violate the principle of equality. The legislature has some room for discretion about whether to implement such preferential treatment. It must see to it that the preferential approach is based on objective and reasonable grounds (a legitimate legislative aim), and that there is a proportional relationship between that aim and the means used to achieve it (legal advantages).
The Constitutional Court does not share the opinion that the contested provision is inconsistent with Art. 1 and Art. 3 par. 1 of the Charter in relation to Art. 30 par. 1 of the Charter, cited by the petitioner, and that annulling § 32 of the Pension Insurance Act would implement equality between the sexes in relation to the right to material security in old age. If the contested provision were annulled, a certain advantage for women/mothers would be removed, without, as part of the “equalization,” men/fathers acquiring the same advantages as women/mothers have. The Constitutional Court functions only as a negative legislature, and its intervention regarding the contested provision would thus only violate the principle of protection citizens’ confidence in the law, or perhaps interfere in legal certainty, or legitimate expectation. In this context, the Constitutional Court states that in this case a conflict between the positive law and justice has not arisen.
Original language: Czech.