The Constitutional Court of Ukraine adopted a Decision in the case on the constitutionality of the restrictions on the rights and freedoms of citizens established for the period of quarantine
On August 28, 2020, the Grand Chamber of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine adopted a Decision in the case upon the constitutional petition of the Supreme Court.
The subject of the right to constitutional petition - the Supreme Court - appealed to the Constitutional Court of Ukraine to declare unconstitutional the provisions of paragraphs 3.5, 3.6, 3.7, 3.14, paragraph 6.6 of the Resolution of the Cabinet of Ministers Of Ukraine "On the establishment of quarantine to prevent the spread of acute respiratory disease COVID-19 caused by coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 in Ukraine and the stages of mitigation of anti-epidemic measures" of May 20, 2020 №392 (hereinafter – Resolution №392), paragraphs 10, 17 of the Procedure for implementing anti-epidemic measures related to self-isolation, approved by the Resolution №392 (hereinafter - the Procedure), Articles 29.1, 29.3 of the Law of Ukraine "On the State Budget of Ukraine for 2020" of November 14, 2019 № 294–IX as amended (hereinafter - the Law №294), paragraph 2.9 of Section II "Final Provisions" of the Law of Ukraine "On Amendments to the Law of Ukraine "On the State Budget of Ukraine for 2020"" of April 13, 2020 № 553–IX (hereinafter - the Law №553).
By the Decision of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine, the following provisions were declared as inconsistent with the Constitution of Ukraine (are unconstitutional):
- Articles 29.1 and 29.3 of the Law №294;
- paragraph 2.9 of Section II “Final Provisions” of the Law №553.
These provisions of the laws were declared unconstitutional and shall cease to be valid from the date of adoption of this Decision by the Constitutional Court of Ukraine.
The Court also terminated the constitutional proceedings in the case regarding the review of the disputed provisions of the Resolution №392 and the Procedure for compliance with the Constitution of Ukraine in connection with their expiration.
At the same time, the Constitutional Court of Ukraine stressed that the restriction of the constitutional human and citizen’s rights and freedoms is possible in cases specified by the Constitution of Ukraine. Such a restriction may be established only by law - an act adopted by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine as the only legislative body in Ukraine; the establishment of such a restriction by adoption of regulations is contrary to the Constitution of Ukraine.
The Court also stated:
• cancellation or change by the Law on the State Budget of Ukraine of the scope of the rights and guarantees and legislative regulation provided for in special laws contradicts the Constitution of Ukraine;
• setting the maximum amount of salaries, cash benefits for employees, servants and officials of state institutions, provided for in April 2020 and for the period until the end of the month in which the quarantine established by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine is canceled, is uncertain in time and does not provide predictability of application of these rules of law;
• The Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine is the highest body in the system of executive bodies, and therefore by the disputed provisions of Article 29 of the Law №294 salaries, cash benefits of employees, servants and officials of legislative and judicial authorities are made dependent on the executive;
• Restrictions on the payments provided for in the disputed provisions of Article 29 of the Law №294 are permissible under martial law or state of emergency, but such restrictions should be introduced proportionally, with clear deadlines and in strict accordance with the Constitution and laws of Ukraine;
• ensuring the execution of the final court decision is a positive obligation of the state, but the disputed provision of the Law №553 makes it impossible for the State Treasury of Ukraine to undisputedly write costs of the state and local budgets on the basis of a court decision until January 1, 2021, which restricts a person's constitutional right to judicial protection.
The Decision of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine is binding, final and may not be appealed.