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The Supreme Court is the nation's highest court of justice and the instance of appeal for verdicts handed down by courts of a lower level.

The Supreme Court is the highest court in Norway and is situated in Oslo.

It is the function of the Supreme Court, as the highest court in the land to contribute to the resolution of matters on which the law is unclear. The Supreme Court also has a responsibility for the evolution of the law - within the framework of existing legislation - as and when required by new societal problems. Accordingly, leave to appeal to the Supreme Court is often granted in cases that raise matters of principle beyond the specific subject matter of the issue in dispute. The decisions are final verdicts and cannot be appealed or complained against. The one special exception is for cases that can be brought before the Court for Human Rights in Strasbourg.
The court is chaired by the President of the Supreme Court, and has another 19 other judges.

Field of responsibilty

The Supreme Court considers both civil and criminal cases, and has authority in all areas of the law. In criminal cases the question of guilt is determined by the Courts of Appeal, whereas the Supreme Court may decide on sentencing and the quality of the procedure.  

It is the function of the Supreme Court, as the highest court in the land, to ensure uniformity of legal process and to contribute to the resolution of matters on which the law is unclear. The Supreme Court also has a responsibility for the evolution of the law - within the framework of existing legislation - as and when required by new societal problems. Accordingly, leave to appeal to the Supreme Court is often granted in cases that raise matters of principle beyond the specific subject matter of the issue in dispute.

Proceedings - Appeals committee

Appeals to the Supreme Court  over decisions made by the district courts and the Courts of Appeal are first considered by the Supreme Court’s appeals committee. As well as adjudicating on appeals against interlocutory orders, the Appeals Selection Committee also functions as a filter for appeals against judgments This committee decides whether a case shall proceed to the Supreme Court.  The Committee is constituted with three judges per case. Proceedings in the Appeals Committee are in writing alone, the decisions are made on the strength of the documents in the case.

Proceeding - Ordinary cases

Individual cases are normally heard by a panel of five judges, but the most important cases are heard in Grand Chamber by eleven justices or by all of the justices sitting in plenary session.

The proceedings of the Supreme Court are almost always oral, and are generally conducted in open court. However, evidence and testimonies are not presented directly as in cases before the District Courts and the Court of Appeal. Nor does the Supreme Court conduct judicial inspections outside the court. 

Publication of judicial decisions

The judicial decisions of the Supreme Court and of the Appeals Selection Committee of the Supreme Court are published in the Norwegian Law Gazette (Norsk Retstidende) and the Lovdata Foundation legal information system. The most recent decisions are also available on Internet for a limited period of time after they have been delivered.

Read more about the Supreme Court at www.hoyesterett.no

 

 

The page was updated: 14.08.2017, kl. 09:57