The Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation is a judicial body of constitutional review, which independently exercises judicial power by means of constitutional judicial proceedings.
Powers, rules of the establishment and operation of the Constitutional Court are determined by the Constitution of the Russian Federation and the Federal Constitutional Law on the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation (hereinafter the FCL).
The Constitutional Court consists of 19 judges, appointed by the Federation Council upon nomination by the President of the Russian Federation. The Constitutional Court shall perform its functions provided that no less than three quarters of the total number of Judges are in office. The powers of the Constitutional Court are of unlimited duration.
•Upon application by the President of the Russian Federation, the Federation Council or at least one fifth of its members, the State Duma or at least one of fifth of its members, Government of the Russian Federation, the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation and the Superior Court of Arbitration of the Russian Federation, legislative and executive bodies of the constituent entities of the Russian Federation decides on conformity with the Constitution of federal laws, normative acts, issued by the President, the Federation Council, the State Duma, Government of the Russian Federation and the constituent entities of the Russian Federation.
•On complaints about violation of constitutional rights and freedoms of citizens, verifies the constitutionality of a law that has been applied in a specific case.
•Upon request by a court verifies the constitutionality of a law that ought to be applied by a respective court in a specific case.
•Decides on conformity with the Constitution of agreements between bodies of state power of the Russian Federation and international treaties pending their entry into force.
•Decides disputes concerning competence between Federal bodies of state power, between Federal bodies of state power and constituent entities of the Russian Federation as well as between supreme bodies of state power of constituent entities of the Russian Federation, if such competence is defined by the Constitution and there are no alternative means to settle the dispute.
•Gives an interpretation of the Constitution of the Russian Federation.
•Renders a declaratory judgment on the observance of a prescribed procedure for charging the President of the Russian Federation with high treason or with commission of other grave offense
Independence, collegiality, openness, adversary system and equality of parties.
The Constitutional Court considers and decides cases in sessions with holding hearings or (in cases, stipulated by the FCL) without holding hearings.
Decisions of the Constitutional Court are obligatory throughout the territory of the Russian Federation for all representative, executive and judicial bodies of state power, local self-government, enterprises, agencies, organizations, public officials, citizens and their associations.
Decisions of the Constitutional Court are directly applicable, requiring no affirmation by any other body.
•A Judge must be a Russian citizen who has attained the age of 40, is of high moral character, has higher juridical education and work experience in the legal profession of at least fifteen years, and possesses recognized high qualifications in the sphere of law.
•A Judge may not publicly express his or her opinion about any question, which in future may be subject to consideration by the Court.
•A Judge may not engage in political activities, belong to political parties and movements, conduct political advocacy or campaigning.
•A Judge may not hold any other public or social office; engage in entrepreneurial or any other remunerative activities. Teaching, academic and creative activities are considered exceptions to this general rule.
•Judges are appointed for an indefinite term of office, but are subject (except for the President of the Court) to the age limit of 70 years.