Constitution of Romania
Revision of the Constitution
- The Constitution of Romania of 1991 was amended and completed by the Law No. 429/2003 on the revision of the Constitution of Romania, published in the Official Gazette of Romania, Part I, No. 758 of 29 October 2003, republished by the Legislative Council on the grounds of article 152 of the Constitution, with the updated denominations and the renumbered texts (Article 152 became, in the republished form, Article 156).
- The Law No. 429/2003 on the revision of the Constitution of Romania was approved by the national referendum of 18-19 October 2003, and came into force on 29 October 2003, the date of the publication in the Official Gazette of Romania, Part I, No. 758 of 29 October 2003 of the Decision of the Constitutional Court No. 3 of 22 October 2003 for the confirmation of the result of the national referendum of 18-19 October 2003 concerning the Law on the revision of the Constitution of Romania.
- The Constitution of Romania, in its initial form, was adopted in the sitting of the Constituant Assembly of 21 November 1991, was published in the Official Gazette of Romania, Part I, No. 233 of 21 November 1991, and came into force after its approval by the national referendum of 8 December 1991.
- Constitution - 1991
- Major provisions of the Law for the revision of the Constitution
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CONSTITUTION OF ROMANIA
Fundamental rights, freedoms and duties
(1) All citizens enjoy the rights and freedoms granted to them by the Constitution and other laws, and have the duties laid down thereby.
(2) The law shall only act for the future, except for the more favourable criminal or administrative law.
|Equality of rights||ARTICLE 16|
(1) Citizens are equal before the law and public authorities, without any privilege or discrimination.
(2) No one is above the law.
(3) Access to public, civil, or military positions or dignities may be granted, according to the law, to persons whose citizenship is Romanian and whose domicile is in Romania. The Romanian State shall guarantee equal opportunities for men and women to occupy such positions and dignities.
(4) After Romania's accession to the European Union, the Union's citizens who comply with the requirements of the organic law have the right to elect and be elected to the local public administration bodies.
|Romanian citizens while abroad||ARTICLE 17|
Romanian citizens while abroad shall enjoy the protection of the Romanian State and shall be bound to fulfil their duties, with the exception of those incompatible with their absence from the country.
|Aliens and stateless persons||ARTICLE 18|
(1) Aliens and stateless persons living in Romania shall enjoy general protection of persons and assets, as guaranteed by the Constitution and other laws.
(2) The right of asylum shall be granted and withdrawn under the provisions of the law, in compliance with the international treaties and conventions Romania is a party to.
|Extradition and expulsion||ARTICLE 19|
(1) No Romanian citizen shall be extradited or expelled from Romania.
(2) By exemption from the provisions of paragraph (1) , Romanian citizens can be extradited based on the international agreements Romania is a party to, according to the law and on a mutual basis.
(3) Aliens and stateless persons may be extradited only in compliance with an international convention or in terms of reciprocity.
(4) Expulsion or extradition shall be ruled by the court.
|International treaties on human rights||ARTICLE 20|
(1) Constitutional provisions concerning the citizens' rights and liberties shall be interpreted and enforced in conformity with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, with the convenants and other treaties Romania is a party to.
(2) Where any inconsistencies exist between the covenants and treaties on the fundamental human rights Romania is a party to, and the national laws, the international regulations shall take precedence, unless the Constitution or national laws comprise more favourable provisions.
|Free access to justice||ARTICLE 21|
(1) Every person is entitled to bring cases before the courts for the defence of his legitimate rights, liberties and interests.
(2) The exercise of this right shall not be restricted by any law.
(3) All parties shall be entitled to a fair trial and a solution of their cases within a reasonable term.
(4) Administrative special jurisdiction is optional and free of charge.
Fundamental rights and freedoms
|Right to life, to physical and mental integrity||ARTICLE 22|
(1) The right to life, as well as the right to physical and mental integrity of person are guaranteed.
(2) No one may be subjected to torture or to any kind of inhuman or degrading punishment or treatment.
(3) The death penalty is prohibited.
|Individual freedom||ARTICLE 23|
(1) Individual freedom and security of a person are inviolable.
(2) Search, detainment, or arrest of a person shall be permitted only in the cases and under the procedure provided by law.
(3) Detention shall not exceed twenty-four hours.
(4) Preventive custody shall be ordered by a judge and only in the course of criminal proceedings.
(5) During the criminal proceedings, the preventive custody may only be ordered for 30 days at the most and extended for 30 days at the most each, without the overall length exceeding a reasonable term, and no longer than i80 days.
(6) After the lawsuit has begun, the court is bound, according to the law, to check, on a regular basis and no later than 60 days, the lawfulness and grounds of the preventive custody, and to order at once the release of the defendant if the grounds for the preventive custody have ceased to exist or if the court finds there are no new grounds justifying the continuance of the custody.
(7) The decisions by a court of law on preventive custody may be subject to the legal proceedings stipulated by the law.
(8) Any person detained or arrested shall be promptly informed, in a language he understands, of the grounds for his detention or arrest, and notified of the charges against him, as soon as practicable; the notification of the charges shall be made only in the presence of a lawyer of his own choosing or appointed ex officio.
(9) The release of a detained or arrested person shall be mandatory if the reasons for such steps have ceased to exist, as well as under other circumstances stipulated by the law.
(10) A person under preventive custody shall have the right to apply for provisional release, under judicial control or on bail.
(11) Any person shall be presumed innocent till found guilty by a final decision of the court.
(12) Penalties shall be established or applied only in accordance with and on the grounds of the law.
(13) The freedom deprivation sanction can only be based on criminal grounds.
|Right to defence||ARTICLE 24|
(1) The right to defence is guaranteed.
(2) All throughout the trial, the parties shall have the right to be assisted by a lawyer of their own choosing or appointed ex officio.
|Freedom of movement||ARTICLE 25|
(1) The right of free movement within the national territory and abroad is guaranteed. The law shall lay down the conditions for the exercise of this right.
(2) Every citizen is guaranteed the right to establish his domicile or residence anywhere in the country, to emigrate, and to return to his country.
|Personal and family privacy||ARTICLE 26|
(1) The public authorities shall respect and protect the intimate, family and private life.
(2) Any natural person has the right to freely dispose of himself unless by this he infringes on the rights and freedoms of others, on public order or morals.
|Inviolability of domicile||ARTICLE 27|
(1) The domicile and the residence are inviolable. No one shall enter or remain in the domicile or residence of a person without his consent.
(2) An exemption from the provisions of paragraph (1) can operate, according to the law, for the following instances:
(3) Searches shall only be ordered by a judge and carried out under the terms and forms stipulated by the law.
(4) Searches during the night shall be forbidden, except for crimes in flagrante delicto.
|Secrecy of correspondence||ARTICLE 28|
Secrecy of the letters, telegrams and other postal communications, of telephone conversations, and of any other legal means of communication is inviolable.
|Freedom of conscience||ARTICLE 29|
(1) Freedom of thought, opinion, and religious beliefs shall not be restricted in any form whatsoever. No one shall be compelled to embrace an opinion or religion contrary to his own convictions.
(2) Freedom of conscience is guaranteed; it must be manifested in a spirit of tolerance and mutual respect.
(3) All religions shall be free and organized in accordance with their own statutes, under the terms laid down by law.
(4) Any forms, means, acts or actions of religious enmity shall be prohibited in the relationships among the cults.
(5) Religious cults shall be autonomous from the State and shall enjoy support from it, including the facilitation of religious assistance in the army, in hospitals, prisons, homes and orphanages.
(6) Parents or legal tutors have the right to ensure, in accordance with their own convictions, the education of the minor children whose responsibility devolves on them.
|Freedom of expression||ARTICLE 30|
(1) Freedom of expression of thoughts, opinions, or beliefs, and freedom of any creation, by words, in writing, in pictures, by sounds or other means of communication in public are inviolable.
(2) Any censorship shall be prohibited.
(3) Freedom of the press also involves the free setting up of publications.
(4) No publication shall be suppressed.
(5) The law may impose upon the mass media the obligation to make public their financing source.
(6) Freedom of expression shall not be prejudicial to the dignity, honour, privacy of a person, and to the right to one's own image.
(7) Any defamation of the country and the nation, any instigation to a war of aggression, to national, racial, class or religious hatred, any incitement to discrimination, territorial separatism, or public violence, as well as any obscene conduct contrary to morality shall be prohibited by law.
(8) Civil liability for any information or creation made public falls upon the publisher or producer, the author, the producer of the artistic performance, the owner of the copying facilities, radio or television station, under the terms laid down by law. Indictable offences of the press shall be established by law.
|Right to information||ARTICLE 31|
(1) A person's right of access to any information of public interest shall not be restricted.
(2) The public authorities, according to their competence, shall be bound to provide correct information to the citizens in public affairs and matters of personal interest.
(3) The right to information shall not be prejudicial to the measures of protection of young people or national security.
(4) Public and private media shall be bound to provide correct information to the public opinion.
(5) Public radio and television services shall be autonomous. They must guarantee any important social and political group the exercise of the right to broadcasting time. The organization of these services and the parliamentary control over their activity shall be regulated by an organic law.
|Right to education||ARTICLE 32|
(1) The right to education is provided by the compulsory general education, by education in high schools and vocational schools, by higher education, as well as other forms of instruction and postgraduate improvement.
(2) Education at all levels shall be carried out in Romanian. Education may also be carried out in a foreign language of international use, under the terms laid down by law.
(3) The right of persons belonging to national minorities to learn their mother tongue, and their right to be educated in this language are guaranteed; the ways to exercise these rights shall be regulated by law.
(4) State education shall be free, according to the law. The State shall grant social scholarships to children or young people coming from disadvantaged families and to those institutionalized, as stipulated by the law.
(5) Education at all levels shall take place in state, private, or confessional institutions, according to the law.
(6) The autonomy of the Universities is guaranteed.
(7) The State shall ensure the freedom of religious education, in accordance with the specific requirements of each religious cult. In public schools, religious education is organized and guaranteed by law.
|Access to culture||ARTICLE 33|
(1) The access to culture is guaranteed under the law.
(2) A person's freedom to develop his/her spirituality and to get access to the values of national and universal culture shall not be limited.
(3) The State must make sure that spiritual identity is preserved, national culture is supported, arts are stimulated, cultural legacy is protected and preserved, contemporary creativity is developed, and Romania's cultural and artistic values are promoted throughout the world.
|Right to protection of health||ARTICLE 34|
(1) The right to the protection of health is guaranteed.
(2) The State shall be bound to take measures to ensure public hygiene and health.
(3) The organization of the medical care and social security system in case of sickness, accidents, maternity and recovery, the control over the exercise of medical professions and paramedical activities, as well as other measures to protect physical and mental health of a person shall be established according to the law.
|Right to a healthy environment||ARTICLE 35|
(1) The State shall acknowledge the right of every person to a healthy, well preserved and balanced environment.
(2) The State shall provide the legislative framework for the exercise of such right.
(3) Natural and legal entities shall be bound to protect and improve the environment.
|Right to vote||ARTICLE 36|
(1) Every citizen having turned eighteen up to or on the election day shall have the right to vote.
(2) The mentally deficient or alienated persons, laid under interdiction, as well as the persons disenfranchised by a final decision of the court cannot vote.
|Right to be elected||ARTICLE 37|
(1) Eligibility is granted to all citizens having the right to vote, who meet the requirements in Article 16 (3) , unless they are forbidden to join a political party, in accordance with Article 40 (3) .
(2) Candidates must have turned, up to or on the election day, at least twenty-three in order to be elected to the Chamber of Deputies or the bodies of local public administration, at least thirty-three in order to be elected to the Senate, and at least thirty-five in order to be elected to the office of President of Romania.
|Right to be elected to the European Parliament||ARTICLE 38|
After Romania's accession to the European Union, Romanian citizens shall have the right to elect and be elected to the European Parliament.
|Freedom of assembly||ARTICLE 39|
Public meetings, processions, demonstrations or any other assembly shall be free and may be organized and held only peacefully, without arms of any kind whatsoever.
|Right of association||ARTICLE 40|
(1) Citizens may freely associate into political parties, trade unions, employers' associations, and other forms of association.
(2) The political parties or organizations which, by their aims or activity, militate against political pluralism, the principles of a State governed by the rule of law, or against the sovereignty, integrity or independence of Romania shall be unconstitutional.
(3) Judges of the Constitutional Court, the advocates of the people, magistrates, active members of the Armed Forces, policemen and other categories of civil servants, established by an organic law, shall not join political parties.
(4) Secret associations are prohibited.
|Labour and social protection of labour||ARTICLE 41|
(1) The right to work shall not be restricted. Everyone has a free choice of his/her profession, trade or occupation, as well as work place.
(2) All employees have the right to measures of social protection. These concern employees' safety and health, working conditions for women and young people, the setting up of a minimum gross salary per economy, weekends, paid rest leave, work performed under difficult and special conditions, as well as other specific conditions, as stipulated by the law.
(3) The normal duration of a working day is of maximum eight hours, on the average.
(4) On equal work with men, women shall get equal wages.
(5) The right to collective labour bargaining and the binding force of collective agreements shall be guaranteed.
|Prohibition of forced labour||ARTICLE 42|
(1) Forced labour is prohibited.
(2) Forced labour does not include:
|Right to strike||ARTICLE 43|
(1) The employees have the right to strike in the defence of their professional, economic and social interests.
(2) The law shall regulate the conditions and limits governing the exercise of this right, as well as the guarantees necessary to ensure the essential services for the society.
|Right of private property||ARTICLE 44|
(1) The right of property, as well as the debts incurring on the State are guaranteed. The content and limitations of these rights shall be established by law.
(2) Private property shall be equally guaranteed and protected by the law, irrespective of its owner. Foreign citizens and stateless persons shall only acquire the right to private property of land under the terms resulting from Romania's accession to the European Union and other international treaties Romania is a party to, on a mutual basis, under the terms stipulated by an organic law, as well as a result of lawful inheritance.
(3) No one shall be expropriated, except on grounds of public utility, established according to the law, against just compensation paid in advance.
(4) The nationalization or any other measures of forcible transfer of assets to public property based on the owners' social, ethnic, religious, political, or other discriminatory features.
(5) For projects of general interest, the public authorities are entitled to use the subsoil of any real estate with the obligation to pay compensation to its owner for the damages caused to the soil, plantations or buildings, as well as for other damages imputable to these authorities.
(6) Compensation provided under paragraphs (3) and (5) shall be agreed upon with the owner, or by the decision of the court when a settlement cannot be reached.
(7) The right of property compels to the observance of duties relating to environmental protection and ensurance of neighbourliness, as well as of other duties incumbent upon the owner, in accordance with the law or custom.
(8) Legally acquired assets shall not be confiscated. Legality of acquirement shall be presumed.
(9) Any goods intended for, used or resulting from a criminal or minor offence may be confiscated only in accordance with the provisions of the law.
|Economic freedom||ARTICLE 45|
Free access of persons to an economic activity, free enterprise, and their exercise under the law shall be guaranteed.
|Right of inheritance||ARTICLE 46|
The right of inheritance is guaranteed.
|Living standard||ARTICLE 47|
(1) The State shall be bound to take measures of economic development and social protection, of a nature to ensure a decent living standard for its citizens.
(2) Citizens have the right to pensions, paid maternity leave, medical care in public health centres, unemployment benefits, and other forms of public or private social securities, as stipulated by the law. Citizens have the right to social assistance, according to the law.
(1) The family is founded on the freely consented marriage of the spouses, their full equality, as well as the right and duty of the parents to ensure the upbringing, education and instruction of their children.
(2) The terms for entering into marriage dissolution and nullity of marriage shall be established by law. Religious wedding may be celebrated only after the civil marriage.
(3) Children born out of wedlock are equal before the law with those born in wedlock.
|Protection of children and young people||ARTICLE 49|
(1) Children and young people shall enjoy special protection and assistance in the pursuit of their rights.
(2) The State shall grant allowances for children and benefits for the care of ill or disabled children. Other forms of social protection for children and young people shall be established by law.
(3) The exploitation of minors, their employment in activities that might be harmful to their health, or morals, or might endanger their life and normal development are prohibited.
(4) Minors under the age of fifteen may not be employed for any paid labour.
(5) The public authorities are bound to contribute to secure the conditions for the free participation of young people in the political, social, economic, cultural and sporting life of the country.
|Protection of disabled persons||ARTICLE 50|
Disabled persons shall enjoy special protection. The State shall provide the accomplishment of a national policy of equal opportunities, disability prevention and treatment, so that disabled persons can effectively participate in community life, while observing the rights and duties of their parents or legal guardians.
|Right of petition||ARTICLE 51|
(1) Citizens have the right to address the public authorities by petitions formulated only in the name of the signatories.
(2) Legally established organizations have the right to forward petitions, exclusively on behalf of the collective body they represent.
(3) The exercise of the right of petition shall be exempt from tax.
(4) The public authorities are bound to answer to petitions within the time limits and under the conditions established by law.
|Right of a person aggrieved by a public authority||ARTICLE 52|
(1) Any person aggrieved in his/her legitimate rights or interests by a public authority, by means of an administrative act or by the failure of a public authority to solve his/her application within the lawful time limit, is entitled to the acknowledgement of his/her claimed right or legitimate interest, the annulment of the act and reparation for the damage.
(2) The conditions and limits on the exercise of this right shall be regulated by an organic law.
(3) The State shall bear patrimony liability for any prejudice caused as a result of judicial errors. The State liability shall be assessed according to the law and shall not eliminate the liability of the magistrates having exercised their mandate in ill will or grave negligence.
|Restriction on the exercise of certain rights or freedoms||ARTICLE 53|
(1) The exercise of certain rights or freedoms may only be restricted by law, and only if necessary, as the case may be, for: the defence of national security, of public order, health, or morals, of the citizens' rights and freedoms; conducting a criminal investigation; preventing the consequences of a natural calamity, disaster, or an extremely severe catastrophe.
(2) Such restriction shall only be ordered if necessary in a democratic society. The measure shall be proportional to the situation having caused it, applied without discrimination, and without infringing on the existence of such right or freedom.
|Faithfulness towards the country||ARTICLE 54|
(1) Faithfulness towards the country is sacred.
(2) Citizens holding public offices, as well as the military are liable for the loyal fulfilment of the obligations they are bound to, and shall, for this purpose, take the oath as requested by law.
|Defence of the country||ARTICLE 55|
(1) Citizens have the right and duty to defend Romania.
(2) The terms for doing the military service shall be set up in an organic law.
(3) Citizens may be conscripted from the age of 20 and up to the age of 35, except for volunteers, under the terms of the applicable organic law.
|Financial contributions||ARTICLE 56|
(1) Citizens are under the obligation to contribute to public expenditure, by taxes and duties.
(2) The legal taxation system must ensure a fair distribution of the tax burden.
(3) Any other dues shall be prohibited, except those determined by law, under exceptional circumstances.
|Exercise of rights and freedoms||ARTICLE 57|
Romanian citizens, foreign citizens, and stateless persons shall exercise their constitutional rights and freedoms in good faith, without any infringement of the rights and liberties of others.
Advocate of the People
|Appointment and role||ARTICLE 58|
(1) The Advocate of the People shall be appointed for a term of office of 5 years, in order to defend the natural persons' rights and freedoms. The Advocate of the People's deputies shall be specialized per fields of activity.
(2) The Advocate of the People and his/her deputies shall not perform any other public or private office, except for teaching positions in higher education.
(3) The organization and functioning of the Advocate of the People institution shall be regulated by an organic law.
|Exercise of powers||ARTICLE 59|
(1) The Advocate of the People shall exercise his powers ex officio or at the request of persons aggrieved in their rights and freedoms, within the limits established by law.
(2) It is binding upon the public authorities to give the Advocate of the People the necessary support in the exercise of his powers.
|Report before Parliament||ARTICLE 60|
The Advocate of the People shall report before the two Parliament Chambers, annually or at the request thereof. The reports my contain recommendations on legislation or measures of any other nature for the defence of the citizens' rights and freedoms.