Legal acts in civil proceedings


Legal acts are the result of the creation of law by a competent state authority or another authority authorized to do so. A legal act is also the operation of a state body or legal entity in accordance with applicable law, aimed at changing the legal relationship.

Legal acts - their types

The legal act will therefore be, for example, the Ordinance of the Minister of Justice of February 15, 2016 amending the ordinance on specifying templates and methods of providing access to official forms of pleadings in civil proceedings.

  1. Act of law - Regulation

  2. Authority authorized to issue a legal act - the Minister of Justice

  3. Applicable regulations - the competences of the Minister of Justice include matters related to the judiciary, i.e. to define templates and the manner of making available official forms of pleadings in civil proceedings. based on Article. 125 § 3 of the Act of November 17, 1964 - Code of Civil Procedure (Journal of Laws of 2014, item 101, as amended1)

  4. Change of the legal relationship - the purpose of the regulation is to regulate the issue of specifying templates and the manner of providing access to official forms. The Ordinance of the Minister of Justice of April 5, 2012 on specifying templates and the manner of providing official forms of pleadings in civil proceedings (Journal of Laws of 2015, item 723) will be changed, Annexes 7-9 and 11, which we learn from the content of § 1 of the cited regulation.


A legal act is a signed and published document. Its obligatory elements are the name, date of issue, title and signature of the authorized person.

There are three types of legal acts in Polish law:

  1. unilateral or bilateral legal acts,

  2. constitutive or declarative legal acts,

  3. generally applicable and internally binding legal acts.

Unilateral legal acts occur most often in the context of international law, it is a declaratory declaration of will. It can be, for example, a legal act recognizing the laws of another country or a notification, i.e. an official written notification of another entity about a certain event.

Bilateral legal acts require an unanimous declaration of will by both parties, an example of such an act may be, for example, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

A constitutive act is an act shaping, that is creating new rights and obligations of the addressee to whom it is addressed, e.g. granting a pension.
A declaratory legal act, unlike a constitutive act, does not change or create a new law, but only confirms the existing rights and obligations of the addressees, e.g. a birth certificate.

The generally applicable acts of law are in force throughout the territory of the Republic of Poland, they are issued, for example, by the minister of education. The circle of addressees is subjectively unlimited.

An act of internally (locally) binding law is, for example, a resolution of the City Council of Wrocław, which is in force within Wrocław, so the circle of addressees is subjectively limited to the residents of Wrocław.

Hierarchy of legal acts

In the Polish legal system, legal acts are arranged hierarchically, which means that lower-level acts must be subordinated to higher-level acts.

The most important legal acts in Poland are:

  1. the constitution of the Republic of Poland,

  2. ratified international agreements,

  3. regulations, directives and decisions of the European Union,

  4. acts and ordinances with the force of law,

  5. regulations,

  6. acts of local law.

Form of the legal act

A legal act, depending on the field it regulates, may have a different length - ordinances sometimes consist of only a few sentences, while acts are divided into chapters, articles, paragraphs and sub-points.

Building a legal act

The legal act should be structured in a logical and coherent way, therefore it should contain:

  1. specification of the type of legal act,
  2. date of adoption,
  3. the name and title of the act,
  4. proper part
    • general provisions - a description of the subject to be regulated,
    • special provisions - clarifying the regulations,
    • transitional and adjustment provisions - regulation of the impact of a new act on the current legal status,
    • final provisions - date of entry into force of the act (vacatio legis),
    • signature of the person holding the function of the authority authorized to promulgate (promulgate the act).

Publication of a legal act

All generally applicable legal acts are made available by publishing them in special publications - promulgating bodies, i.e. publications intended for the publication of legal acts. In Poland, legal acts are published in the Journal of Laws of the Republic of Poland and the Official Journal of the Republic of Poland "Monitor Polski". All binding and archival legal acts are also available in the Internet System of Legal Acts - ISAP, which contains bibliographic descriptions and the text of legal acts published in the Journal of Laws and the Polish Monitor. Legal acts are also published by each ministry, while acts of local law are published in voivodship official journals.