The High Court's Initial Hearing

The Supreme Court expands the composition that will deliberate on The Incapacity Law

After the initial hearing on The Incapacity Law, the Supreme Court announces that it is issuing a conditional order to the government, and that the next hearing will be held by an expanded panel of 11 judges

High Court judges at the first hearing (Photo: Yonatan Sindel, Flash 90)

After last Thursday's hearing on The Incapacity Law, in which Judges Hayut, Fogelman and Amit participated. Today (Sunday) the Supreme Court announces that it has decided not to reject the petition, the judges issued a conditional order to the government in which the government must explain why the law cannot apply only from the next Knesset. In addition, it was decided that the next hearing on the law will be held with an extended bench of 11 judges.

The judges who will preside over the appeal are: 1) President Esther Hayut, 2) Vice President Uzi Fogelman, 3) Judge Yitzhak Amit, 4) Judge Noam Sohlberg, 5) Judge Daphne Barak-Erez, 6) Judge Anat Baron, 7) Judge David Mintz, 8) Judge Yosef Elron, 9) Judge Yael Vilner, 10) Judge Ofer Grosskopf, and 11) Judge Alex Stein.

Judge Fogelman in the debate on The Incapacity Law

As published during the hearing in the Supreme Court regarding the petition calling for the annulment of The Incapacity Law which was enacted as an amendment to The Basic Law - The Government, Judge Uzi Fogelman argued that despite the criticisms and the danger of canceling the authority of the Knesset, the High Court has the authority to cancel basic laws enacted by elected officials.

Fogelman claimed: "Positive law is not like that. There is a doctrine of abuse of authority and there is another doctrine. Sir, it is as if he is speaking in a vacuum, but there is no vacuum. In terms of positive law, the court is authorized to review basic laws based on doctrines established in our ruling in an expanded composition."

Description of the High Court's decision

"Even if they ask to change it, but it's not like we're in a vacuum. It sounds like we're in unplowed land, maybe it still needs to be plowed, but the land already has furrows." Later Hayut commented that: "Sometimes we are criticized for not going down to the 'political field'. We insist on being apolitical, and we only speak in legal language."

Dramatic legal event: disqualification of two fundamental laws in less than two months?

As mentioned, these harsh words were said by Fogelman during a discussion on the petition against The Incapacity Law. President Esther Hayut, Judge Yitzhak Amit and Fogelman will have to decide whether to historically invalidate a fundamental law enacted by the Knesset. It should be noted that a High Court hearing on the invalidation of a basic law is not a routine matter, and today's hearing is considered particularly dramatic, in light of the legal legislation and the claims that the power of the Supreme Court should be limited.

In addition to today's discussion, in about a month and a half, the judges of the High Court will deliberate on the invalidation of the law to limit The Clause of Reasonability, which was passed as an amendment to The Basic Law - The Judiciary. Thus, in the near future and in a historic manner, the High Court will rule on the invalidation of two Basic Laws ("The Government" and "The Judiciary") enacted by the elected representatives in the Knesset.

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