CONSTITUTION

Chapter One: Fundamental Principles

Chapter Two: Fundamental Rights and Obligations of Citizens

Chapter Three: National Assembly

Chapter Four: President of the Republic

Chapter Five: Council of Ministers

Chapter Six: Judicial Power

Chapter Seven: Local Self-Government and Local Administration

Chapter Eight: Constitutional Court

Chapter Nine: Amendments to the Constitution. Adoption of a New Constitution

Chapter Ten: Coat of Arms, Seal, Flag, Anthem, Capital

Transitional and Concluding Provisions



Chapter Eight

Constitutional Court

Article 147.

    (1) The Constitutional Court shall consist of 12 justices, one-third of whom shall be elected by the National Assembly, one-third shall be appointed by the President, and one-third shall be elected by a joint meeting of the justices of the Supreme Court of Cassation and the Supreme Administrative Court.
    (2) The justices of the Constitutional Court shall be elected or appointed for a period of nine years and shall not be eligible for re-election or re-appointment. The make-up of the Constitutional Court shall be renewed every three years from each quota, in a rotation order established by a law.
    (3) The justices of the Constitutional Court shall be lawyers of high professional and moral integrity and with at least fifteen years of professional experience.
    (4) The justices of the Constitutional Court shall elect by secret ballot a Chairman of the Court for a period of three years.
    (5) The status of a justice of the Constitutional Court shall be incompatible with a representative mandate, or any state or public post, or membership in a political party or trade union, or with the practicing of a free, commercial, or any other paid occupation.
    (6) A justice of the Constitutional Court shall enjoy the same immunity as a Member of the National Assembly.

Article 148.

    (1) The mandate of a justice of the Constitutional Court shall expire upon any of the following occurrences: 1. the expiry of the term of office; 2. resignation submitted before the Constitutional Court; 3. the enforcement of a prison sentence for a deliberate crime; 4. actual incapacitation which has lasted for more than one year; 5. incompatibility with an office or activity pursuant to Article 147 para 5. 6. death.
    (2) The Constitutional Court shall lift a justice's immunity or establish his actual incapacity to perform his duties by a secret ballot requiring a majority of at least two-thirds of the votes of all justices.
    (3) Should the mandate of a Constitutional Court justice be terminated, a new justice from the same quota shall be appointed or elected within one month.

Article 149.

    (1) The Constitutional Court shall: 1. provide binding interpretations of the Constitution; 2. rule on challenges to the constitutionality of the laws and other acts passed by the National Assembly and the acts of the President; 3. rule on competence suits between the National Assembly, the President and the Council of Ministers, and between the bodies of local self-government and the central executive branch of government; 4. rule on the compatibility between the Constitution and the international instruments concluded by the Republic of Bulgaria prior to their ratification, and on the compatibility of domestic laws with the universally recognized norms of international law and the international instruments to which Bulgaria is a party; 5. rule on challenges to the constitutionality of political parties and associations; 6. rule on challenges to the legality of the election of the President and Vice President; 7. rule on challenges to the legality of an election of a Member of the National Assembly; 8. rule on impeachment by the National Assembly against the President or the Vice President.
    (2) No authority of the Constitutional Court shall be vested or suspended by a law.

Article 150.

    (1) The Constitutional Court shall act on an initiative from not fewer than one-fifth of all Members of the National Assembly, the President, the Council of Ministers, the Supreme Court of Cassation, the Supreme Administrative Court or the Chief Prosecutor. A challenge to competence pursuant to para 1 subpara 3 of the preceding Article may further be filed by a municipal council.
    (2) Should it find a discrepancy between a law and the Constitution, the Supreme Court of Cassation or the Supreme Administrative Court shall suspend the proceedings on a case and shall refer the matter to the Constitutional Court.

Article 151.

    (1) A ruling of the Constitutional Court shall require a majority of more than half of the votes of all justices.
    (2) Rulings of the Constitutional Court shall be promulgated in Durzhaven Vestnik within 15 days from the date on which they are issued. A ruling shall come into force three days after its promulgation. Any act found to be unconstitutional shall cease to apply as of the date on which the ruling shall come into force.
    (3) Any portion of a law which is not ruled unconstitutional shall remain in force.

Article 152. The organization and the manner of proceeding of the Constitutional Court shall be established by a law.


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