Press law, case SK 42/09

December 16th, 2011, Tomasz Rychlicki

The Constitutional Tribunal in its judgment of 14 December 2011 case file SK 42/09 held that criminal sanctions for failure to register a daily newspaper or a periodical, as provided in Article 45 of the Polish Act of 26 January 1984 on Press law – APL – (in Polish: ustawa Prawo prasowe), published in Journal of Laws (Dziennik Ustaw) No. 5, item 24, with subsequent amendments, are unconstitutional.

Anybody who publishes a daily newspaper or a periodical without registration or with registration suspended is subject to a fine penalty or the restriction of liberty.

This judgement indicates that the Polish legislator should consider a separate regulation for a printed press, and other rules for periodicals published, in particular, in the Internet. The Court pointed out not only the issue of criminal sanctions for the publication of press without registration, but also the issue of the obligation to register the press, which is still available in the APL.

See also “Press law, case IV KK 174/07“, “Press law, case II K 367/08” and “Press law, case VI Ka 409/07“.