THE NEW BRAZILIAN CIVIL PROCEDURE CODE AND THE INNOVATIONS INTENDED TO MAKE COURT DISPUTES IN BRAZIL MORE EXPEDITIOUS
The current Brazilian Civil Procedure Code has been in effect since 1973. Despite occasional laws that have changed certain items in its text, the current Civil Procedure Code’s obsolescence and the necessity of updating it to reflect day-to-day needs has made its reform a requirement. This is especially so in light of the high volume of lawsuits filed with Brazilian courts every day.
The draft of the new Brazilian Civil Procedure Code was presented on 8 June 2010. This draft was the result of work performed by a committee of respected lawyers appointed by the president of the Brazilian Senate. It was approved by the Brazilian Lower Chamber (Câmara dos Deputados) in March 2014. The draft was later submitted as a bill, and it may be finally approved in 2015, pending the Higher Chamber’s (Senado) approval and enactment by the President.
Since then there have been ever more serious discussions of amendments to be made to the bill. These amendments are always based on the guidelines used to develop the new Brazilian Civil Procedure Code, which are: (i) increasing parties’ financial burden to avoid legal adventures; (ii) an emphasis on conciliation as a dispute resolution mechanism; and (iii) expeditious case handling. This last guideline is to be achieved through various proposed innovations, including reducing the number of appeals and increasing the importance of prior case decisions by authorising judges to decide cases preliminarily based on the settled decisions of prior cases (jurisprudence).
Jan-Mar 2015 issue
Barretto Ferreira e Brancher (BKBG)