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Constitutional Law, New interpretation of the Plenary of the Supreme Court on the scope of article

Constitutional Law, New interpretation of the Plenary of the Supreme Court on the scope of article 100 of the Constitution with respect to the unassailableness of resolutions issued by the Federal Judiciary Council. [17/01/2013]


On January 17, 2013 the Plenary of the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation ruled that there were contradictory decisions with respect to the interpretation and scope on the unassailableness of resolutions issued by the Federal Judiciary Council indicated in article 100 of the Constitution. Having determined the existence of the contradictory decisions, the Plenary undertook the review of the substance of the matter and resolved to issue a new judicial ruling different from the one established in the year 2004 through the Court Precedent P/J.25/2004 the title of which says: “FEDERAL JUDICIAL COUNCIL. AGAINST ITS DECISIONS THE AMPARO IS INVALID EVEN WHEN IT IS FILED BY A PRIVATE PARTY UNRELATED TO THE FEDERAL JUDICIAL BRANCH”. This new ruling reinterprets the unassailableness of article 100 of the Constitution in light of the Reform of our Constitution in relation to the Amparo and Human Rights of June 6 and 10, 2011, especially in relation to the establishment of the principle Pro Persona and the strengthening of International Conventionality.

It was thus as parting from the current article 1 of the Constitution, the Plenary of the Court ruled to approve by a very divided decision of 6 votes in favor and 5 against the drafting presented by the Minister Luis María Aguilar Morales (with reservations). The deciding vote was issued by the President Minister Juan Silva Meza after receiving a tied vote from the rest of the ministers. From the contributions and reasoning issued in the corresponding contributions, it is seen that in the national debate the principle of legal exegetics and strict interpretation of the Constitutional rules is still strongly restraining. Four of the five dissenting Ministers based there vote against, to a greater or lesser extent, on the express text of article 100 of the Constitution, in some cases without even recognizing the contradictory decisions or the obvious conflict arising from the Reading and scope of articles 1, 14 and 16 of the same law, in contrast to the unassailableness of the rulings of the Federal Judicial Council indicated in article 100.

The new rule established by the Plenary of the Court is particularly relevant because:


  1. It is the first time that a final ruling of the Court is reviewed and reinterpreted according to the principle Pro Persona introduced by the Constitutional Reform in relation to Amparo and Human Rights of June 2011.

  2. It is also the first time that the Plenary of the Court will establish an interpretation parting from the express text of the Constitution, strengthening its role not only as defender of the Constitution but also assuming functions of Cassation Court in Mexico.

  3. We are left to guess the positions and opinions between exegetic conservative formalism and interpretive human liberalism will continue developing in the heart of our Highest Court.


It is important to leave a record of the titanic effort and enormous work that the team of lawyers of our litigation partner, the Firm De la Peza y Matuk, did for this debate in the heart of the Plenary of the Court for more than three years, insisting on relocating the focus of the debate on the defense of the fundamental rights of the person, and pushing the recognition of new and modern legal interpretations in the analysis of the constitutional dispute in amparo proceedings, such as the concepts of legitimate interest in contrast to legal interest, of violation of rights by omission, of effectiveness of International treaties and of their justiciability, among others.

It is with enormous and profound satisfaction and pride that Sámano Abogados recognizes the tireless work, noble spirit and fair determination of our litigation partners of De la Peza in pursuing this matter until its debate in the Court. Even more so for taking and raising before our High Court the recognition and defense of the fundamental rights of the person.

You can consult the complete session of the Court that led to the establishment of the new rule at: http://www.scjn.gob.mx/PLENO/ver_taquigraficas/17012013PO.pdf.

If you would like to learn more about this topic please contact Lic. Rafael Sámano: rsamano@samanosc.com.mx

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