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In Brazil, Only 40% of Court Cases Are Judged in One Year or Less

The large number of legal appeals and the lack of organization and communication among courts are the main reasons for the slowness of the Brazilian judicial system, in the opinion of the president of the Federal Supreme Court (STF), Minister Nélson Jobim.

In 2003, 60 in every 100 cases took over a year to be decided. This finding is part of a document presented today at the seminar, “Justice in Numbers – Statistical Indicators of the Brazilian Judicial System.”


The president of the STF presented an X-ray picture of the country’s judicial system, showing that in 2003 the annual rate of judicial congestion was 59.26%, which means that only four in every 10 cases were judged within a year.


For Jobim, this indicates not lack of competence on the part of the judges, but procedural and administrative problems.


According to Jobim, the population will begin to perceive changes in the Brazilian judicial system from the moment this system of evaluation becomes on-line and permanent.


“We won’t be able to begin to provide a response in fewer than four or five years. Beginning in the fifth year, we shall start to see the results of these operations.”


The national judicial system is composed of 13,474 judges and a staff of 246,632 employees. According to the study, 17.49 million cases were filed in 2003, and each judge decided 8,621 cases, on average.


Agência Brasil

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