Summary: 1. Introduction. – 2. The Right to a Fair Trial and Panels of Judges. – 3. The Rules Referring to Panels of Judges in the Civil Proceeding. – 3.1. The Rules Referring to Panels of Judges in the Civil Proceeding – Courts of the First Instance. – 3.2. The Principle of the Collegiality of the Panels of the Courts of Appeal. – 3.3. The Principle of Invariability of the Adjudicating Court Composition – 4. The Principle of Invariability of the Adjudicating Court Composition During COVID – 19 Pandemic – 5. Conclusions.
The article discusses systemic and processual changes in provisions referring to the panels of judges in Poland. The statutory regulation adequate during the COVID-19 epidemic contains regulations whereby a single-judge panel is proper in the first and second instance. At the same time, the principle of invariability and stability of the courts' panel was exterminated. However, in case of Poland the protection of the dependent court, established with an extreme breach of law is protected by administrative and political decisions on shaping the court composition. Dogmatic legal analysis. The subject of the dogmatic legal analysis is the content of the law and its interpretations found in the jurisprudence and views of the doctrine. The court ‘shaped’ in such a way guarantees the expected ‘judgment’. There are fears that these standards of the highest judiciary bodies in Poland may spread among other courts which are managed by the presidents appointed by Justice Minister - General Prosecutor. Judges appointed in an illegal way will, by way of political decisions, be in particular court composition, and then talking about court independence will be completely untrue. Let's hope that COVID-19 pandemic will end soon. It is then necessary to make sure that all the restrictions on the right of recourse to court, introduced as a pretext to combat the pandemic, will be removed. Otherwise, the pandemic of lawlessness will stay with us much longer than Covid.