Basic Law of the Vatican City, June 7, 1929

MOTU PROPRIO
OF THE GREAT PONTIFF PIUS
XI

OF OUR OWN BIKE

FUNDAMENTAL LAW
OF THE VATICAN CITY

NI Basic Law of the Vatican City, June 7, 1929 .

By Our own motion and certain science, with the fullness of Our sovereign authority, We have ordered and order what follows, to be observed as the law of the State:

1. The Supreme Pontiff, Sovereign of the Vatican City State, has full legislative, executive and judicial powers. During the vacant See, the same powers belong to the Sacred College, which may issue legislative provisions only in cases of urgency and to take effect no later than the duration of the vacancy, unless they are confirmed by the Supreme Pontiff subsequently elected according to the norms of the sacred constitutions.

2. The fullness of the powers that belong to him remains reserved to the Supreme Pontiff both in relation to the organs and tribunals of the Apostolic See, according to canons 7, 230 to 270, 1597 to 1607 of the Codex iuris canonici , without prejudice to the aforementioned provisions of article 14 of this law, and on everything concerning his Court, including the Noble, Palatine and Swiss Guards, except for the latter the provisions of article 7 of this law. The Administration of the Goods of the Holy See, the Special Administration of the Holy See, the Vatican Library and Archives, the printing press and the bookshop also report directly to the Supreme Pontiff.

3. Representation of the Vatican State, through the Secretariat of State, in comparison with foreign States for the conclusion of treaties and for diplomatic relations remains reserved to the Supreme Pontiff.

4. The approval of the balance sheets and final accounts of the Vatican City, which are presented by the Governor, with the opinion of the General Councilor of the State, is reserved to the Supreme Pontiff.

5. The Supreme Pontiff, with regard to the government of the Vatican City, without prejudice to the exclusions referred to in the preceding articles, reserves the right to delegate legislative power for certain matters or individual objects to the Governor of the State.

Regardless of an express delegation, the Governor, likewise with regard to the government of the Vatican City, has the faculty to issue regulations and ordinances for the execution of laws, without being able to derogate from them or dispense them.

In the enactment of delegated laws and regulations and ordinances, the Governor, unless otherwise provided, must hear the opinion of the General Councilor of the State.

6. The Governor of the State, without prejudice to the exclusions and limitations established in the previous articles 2, 3 and 4, is delegated the exercise of executive power. Acts which are reserved to the Supreme Pontiff and those which, case by case, he believes he is calling upon himself are excluded from this delegation.

7. The Governor of the State is appointed and dismissed by the Supreme Pontiff. He is directly and exclusively responsible to him. The Pontifical Gendarmerie Corps reports directly to the Governor, who, for security and police purposes, can also request the assistance of the Swiss Guard, insofar as it is necessary.

8. The advisory body of the Vatican City is the General Councilor of the State.

He is appointed and dismissed by the Supreme Pontiff and is directly and exclusively responsible to him. He is required to give his opinion whenever established by law or when requested by the Supreme Pontiff or the Governor.

9. Judicial power is delegated to the bodies indicated in the following articles, which exercise it in the name of the Supreme Pontiff.

10. Judicial power in civil matters, in cases in which the competence of the single judge is not established, and in criminal matters, when it comes to judging crimes, is ordinarily exercised by a Court of first instance and by the Sacra Romana Rota in seat of appeal, as well as the extraordinary remedy of the appeal to the Supreme Court of the Signatura.

The court of first instance is composed of a president, two effective judges and one alternate.

The appointment and dismissal of the judicial staff belongs to the Supreme Pontiff. Disciplinary power is exercised by the Supreme Court of the Signatura.

11. The functions of single judge in civil matters are ordinarily exercised by the President of the Court of first instance or by one of the judges of the Court designated by him.

12. In criminal matters for offenses, jurisdiction is ordinarily exercised by one or more administrative officers designated by the Governor.

In cases where, according to the laws of criminal procedure, the sentences are final, any other means of appeal at the higher level is excluded.

In cases where the judgments relating to infringements, according to the aforementioned laws, are appealable, the appellate judge is the President of the Court of First Instance or another judge designated by him, without prejudice to any further remedy.

13. At the Court of First Instance the functions of investigating judge are entrusted by the President to a judge of the Court at the beginning of each year; a consistorial lawyer is appointed as those of public prosecutor and promoter of justice, by order of the Dean of the Sacra Romana Rota.

14. The Sacra Romana Rota and the Supreme Court of the Signatura, when functioning as judicial organs of the Vatican City, must perform their acts within the territory of the same.

Representation and patronage before the judicial bodies of the Vatican City are reserved to consistorial lawyers, except for what is provided for the representation and defense before the single judge in civil matters and the judge of offenses.

15. When an administrative act damages a right, action before the judicial authority is admitted, which however, even if it recognizes it as illegitimate, cannot revoke it or modify it, but judges on the effects of the same, also pronouncing, if necessary , on the obligation to pay damages.

16. In any case, anyone who considers his own right or interest to be infringed by an administrative act, can complain to the Supreme Pontiff, through the General Councilor of the State.

17. In any civil or criminal case and at any stage of the same, the Supreme Pontiff can defer the investigation and the decision to a special commission, also with the right to pronounce according to equity and with the exclusion of any further remedy.

18. The faculty to grant pardons, amnesties, pardons and amnesties is always reserved to the Supreme Pontiff. Applications for pardons are forwarded through the General Councilor of the State.

19. The flag of the Vatican City is made up of two vertically divided fields, one yellow adhering to the shaft and the other white, and in the latter the tiara with the keys, all as per the model, which forms attachment A to this law.

The coat of arms consists of the tiara with the keys, as in the model that forms annex B to this law. The seal bears the tiara with the keys in the center and the words ” Vatican City State ” around it, as in the model that forms annex C to this law. 

20. The norms and customs hitherto observed by the Holy See regarding noble titles and orders of chivalry remain in force.

21. This law will enter into force on the same day of its publication.

We command that the original of this law, bearing the seal of the State, be deposited in the Archive of the laws of the Vatican City State, and that the corresponding text be published in the Supplement of the Acta Apostolicae Sedis, sending anyone responsible to observe it and to have it observed .

Dated by Our Vatican Apostolic Palace on June 7th, one thousand nine hundred twenty-nine, year VIII of Our Pontificate.

PIUS PP. XI

[The Pontiff followed the Fundamental Law of the Vatican City published above by the following five Laws, deliberated on Motu proprio on 7 June 1929: – Law on the sources of law; – Law on citizenship and residence; – Law on the administrative system; – Law on the economic, commercial and professional system; – Law of public safety].


ANNEX TO

OFFICIAL FLAG OF THE VATICAN CITY STATE
Drape painted in yellow and white, with white loaded in the center with the crossed (decussate) Keys surmounted by the Triregno. Yellow rod edged with gold, trimmed with a spear decorated with a cockade in the same colors as the flag and fringed with gold.

ANNEX B.

OFFICIAL COAT OF ARMS OF THE VATICAN CITY STATE Decussed
keys surmounted by the Triregno on a red background.

ANNEX C.

OFFICIAL SEAL OF THE VATICAN CITY STATE
Tondo: Central field with the decussed and surmounted Keys of the Triregno, framed by four concentric turns, of which the pearly exterior, two by two, enclosing the epigraph: VATICAN CITY STATE with the beginning and the end at the bottom, separated by a centered eight-pointed star.


NOTE: The above law has been replaced by a new Basic Law of the State of Vatican City 2000

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