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Accountability in the Costa Rica Legal System

Costa Rica News – There always seems to be the untouchables in a society be it people with a lot of fame and fortune, those with power, elected officials, or someone else that seems to get away with whatever they want to do and have no consequences.  Perhaps this is a step in the right direction in Costa Rica, or it may just be a law that was passed that will never be enforced.

costa rica court systemFor the first time ever, the work of judges in Costa Rica will be judged. The “Corte Plena” approved this regulation on Monday as an accountability measure. Not only will the 1,300 judges be assessed, but also the prosecutors, defense attorneys, police, and administrative personnel.

Some of the considerations will include the timing resolution and amount of judgements made. This regulation has been 5 years in the making, because there were many indicators to develop. In fact, there are a total of 95 matrices for measuring the effectiveness of the various positions of power.

Judge Rolando Vega explained that “You have to evaluate to see if people are doing what they need to do and how they are doing it. If we do not know how they do things, we can not identify failures. That’s the reason why public institutions do many things, but do not have an impact.”

President of the Costa Rican Association of Judicature, Adriana Orocu, said that the judges have always had to submit reports annually, but that it just wasn’t enough to accurately measure their performance. She also pointed out that this new regulation will in no way impair judicial independence and that if they fall short in their rating, more training will be given to improve the situation, but no penalty will be given.

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