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Supreme Court of Israel

The Supreme Court of Israel sits in Jerusalem. It is the highest court of Justice in Israel and the final court of appeals.

When sitting as an appellate court, the Supreme Court hears appeals mainly on judgments and decisions pronounced in the District Courts.

As the High Court of Justice (Bagatz) the Supreme Court hears petitions by any person (not only citizens or residents) against public bodies and governmental authorities.

In this context, the types of cases heard by the Supreme Court include:

1. Constitutional and administrative petitions for judicial review of decisions and actions of the authorities and of legislation;

2. Petitions directed against judgments pronounced in the National Labor Court, in the Supreme Rabbinical Court and in other religious courts.

Generally speaking, the Supreme Court sits in panels of three.

However, a single Justice may hear certain matters while in cases of special importance, the Supreme Court can sit as an expanded panel with an uneven number of Justices.

Daily tours of Supreme Court of Israel are given that are open to the general public take place at 11 a.m. in Hebrew and at 12 noon in English.

The tours inform about the Court, the architecture of the building, and with the history and the structure of the Israeli legal system.

The Public Affairs Department collaborates with the Knesset in providing the “The Life of a law” tour which deals with the interaction between the Supreme Court and the Knesset.

This tour is suitable for groups who wish to acquire an in-depth understanding of the interaction between the legislator and the judiciary.

Also, the first floor of the Supreme Court Library is open to the general public from Sunday to Thursday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m..

The library has existed since the time of the British mandate, and was first located in the previous Supreme Court building in the Russian Compound.

At that time, the collection was smaller and consisted of British, mandatory and Ottoman legislation and British and mandatory case law, most of which was in English.

After the State and the Supreme Court were established, the library’s collection was expanded over time to include books in Hebrew that began to be published.

Law books from various countries including the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, and Australia, and Hebrew scriptures and writings by Jewish law scholars are also included.

In addition, the library contains all of the judgments, apart from confidential ones, of the Supreme Court since the 1970s.

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