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On compulsory life and health insurance of police officers with funds of the state budget

Case No. 06/05-08/05

 

THE CONSTITUTIONAL COURT OF THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA

RULING

ON THE COMPLIANCE OF SECTION 8 “THE HEALTH CARE OF OFFICERS AND SOCIAL GUARANTEES RELATED THERETO” (WORDING OF 29 APRIL 2003) OF CHAPTER II, INTER ALIA ARTICLE 40 (WORDING OF 29 APRIL 2003), OF THE INTERIOR SERVICE STATUTE APPROVED BY THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA LAW ON THE APPROVAL OF THE INTERIOR SERVICE STATUTE WITH THE CONSTITUTION OF THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA, AS WELL AS ON THE COMPLIANCE OF THE CONDITIONS UNDER WHICH PERSONS ARE INSURED BY STATE FUNDS AND OF COMPENSATION PAYMENT UPON THEIR INJURY OR DEATH IN THE LINE OF DUTY (WORDING OF 23 DECEMBER 2002), INTER ALIA ITEMS 14, 15 (WORDING OF 23 DECEMBER 2002) THEREOF, APPROVED BY RESOLUTION OF THE GOVERNMENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA NO. 530 “ON THE CONDITIONS UNDER WHICH PERSONS ARE INSURED BY STATE FUNDS AND OF COMPENSATION PAYMENT UPON THEIR INJURY OR DEATH IN THE LINE OF DUTY” OF 5 DECEMBER 1991 (WORDING OF 23 DECEMBER 2002) WITH ARTICLE 40 (WORDING OF 29 APRIL 2003) OF THE INTERIOR SERVICE STATUTE APPROVED BY THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA LAW ON THE APPROVAL OF THE INTERIOR SERVICE STATUTE

22 November 2007
Vilnius

The Constitutional Court of the Republic of Lithuania composed of the Justices of the Constitutional Court Armanas Abramavičius, Toma Birmontienė, Egidijus Kūris, Kęstutis Lapinskas, Zenonas Namavičius, Vytautas Sinkevičius, Stasys Stačiokas, Romualdas Kęstutis Urbaitis,

with the secretary of the hearing—Daiva Pitrėnaitė,

in the presence of:

the representatives of the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania, the party concerned, who were the Member of the Seimas Vincė Vaidevutė Margevičienė (representing the Seimas, the party concerned, in the part of the case subsequent to petition No. 1B-08/2005 of the Vilnius Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner), and Jadvyga Andriuškevičiūtė, senior adviser of the Legal Department of the Office of the Seimas (representing the Seimas, the party concerned, in the part of the case subsequent to petition No. 1B-12/2005 of the Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner),

the representative of the Government of the Republic of Lithuania, the party concerned, who was Arūnas Sodonis, the Deputy Head of the Law Application Division of the Law Department of the Ministry of the Interior,

pursuant to Articles 102, 105 of the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania, Article 1 of the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Constitutional Court, on 15 November 2007 at the public Court hearing heard constitutional justice case No. 06/05-08/05 subsequent to:

1) the petition of the Vilnius Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, requesting to investigate, whether Section 8 “The Health Care of Officers and Social Guarantees Related Thereto” of Chapter II of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute, to the extent that, according to the petitioner, the scope of social guarantees was reduced as well as compulsory health and life insurance of officers with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of their official duties and insurance benefits, if the officer was injured in the course of execution of the official duties, were renounced, is not in conflict with Paragraph 1 of Article 48, Article 52 of the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania, the constitutional principles of a state under the rule of law, the protection of legitimate expectations, legal certainty, and legal security, also whether Items 14, 15 (wording of 23 December 2002) of the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty approved by Resolution of the Government of the Republic of Lithuania No. 530 “On the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty” of 5 December 1991 to the extent that it is established that a territorial unit of the State Social Insurance Fund Board should decide regarding the payment of the insurance sum to the officers specified in Item 1.1 of these conditions upon their injury in the course of execution of their official duties, while the places of employment of statutory officers specified in Item 1.1 of these conditions shall disburse insurance sums to these officers, are not in conflict with Paragraph 3 of Article 40 of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute (Petition No. 1B-08/2005);

2) the petition of the Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, requesting to investigate, whether Article 40 of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute is not in conflict with Paragraph 1 of Article 29, Paragraph 1 of Article 48, Article 52 of the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania, with the principles of a just civil society and state under the rule of law which, according to the petitioner, are consolidated in the Preamble to the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania, also whether the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty approved by Resolution of the Government of the Republic of Lithuania No. 530 “On the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty” of 5 December 1991 are not in conflict with Article 40 of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute (Petition No. 1B-12/2005).

By the Constitutional Court Decision “On Joining of Petitions into a Single Case” of 13 May 2005, petition No. 1B-08/2005 (Case No. 06/05) of the Vilnius Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, and petition No. 1B-12/2005 (Case No. 08/05) of the Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, were joined into a single case and it was given reference number 06/05-08/05.

The Constitutional Court

has established:

I

1. The Vilnius Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, was considering an administrative case. By its ruling, the said court suspended the consideration of the case and applied to the Constitutional Court with a petition requesting to investigate whether Section 8 “The Health Care of Officers and Social Guarantees Related Thereto“ of Chapter II of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute (hereinafter also referred to as the Statute) to the extent that, according to the petitioner, the scope of social guarantees was reduced as well as compulsory health and life insurance of officers with the funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of their official duties and insurance benefits, if the officer was injured in the course of execution of official duties, were renounced, is not in conflict with Paragraph 1 of Article 48, Article 52 of the Constitution, the constitutional principles of a state under the rule of law, the protection of legitimate expectations, legal certainty, and legal security, also whether Items 14, 15 (wording of 23 December 2002) of the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty (hereinafter also referred to as the Conditions) approved by Government Resolution No. 530 “On the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty” of 5 December 1991 (hereinafter also referred to as Government resolution No. 530 of 5 December 1991) to the extent that it is established that a territorial unit of the State Social Insurance Fund Board should decide regarding the disbursement of the insurance sums to the officers specified in Item 1.1 of these conditions upon their injury in the course of execution of their official duties, while the places of employment of statutory officers specified in Item 1.1 of these conditions shall disburse to these officers the insurance sums, are not in conflict with Paragraph 3 of Article 40 of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute (Petition No. 1B-08/2005);

2. The Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, was considering an administrative case. By its ruling, the said court suspended the consideration of the case and applied to the Constitutional Court with a petition requesting to investigate whether Article 40 of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute is not in conflict with Paragraph 1 of Article 29, Paragraph 1 of Article 48, Article 52 of the Constitution and with the principles of a just civil society and state under the rule of law which, according to the petitioner, are consolidated in the Preamble to the Constitution, also whether the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty approved by Government Resolution No. 530 “On the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty” of 5 December 1991 are not in conflict with Article 40 of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute (Petition No. 1B-12/2005).

II

1. The Vilnius Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, grounds its petition on the following arguments.

1.1. The life and health of officers of the interior service system, including police officers, are frequently subjected to risk (criminal liability is provided for murder of an officer or causing his health disorder because of his service, resistance to his lawful orders or threatening him, while administrative liability is provided for the resistance to him, non-compliance to his lawful order or demand, for insulting his honour and dignity). These peculiarities of professional activities of officers were compensated by the social guarantees provided for in the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Police valid till 1 May 2003. Article 48 of this law (wording of 9 June 1998) provided for compulsory health and life insurance of officers with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of their official duties and the type of social support related therewith—the payment of insurance benefits due to an injury in the course of execution of their official duties.

The Interior Service Statute was adopted by Article 1 of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute adopted on 29 April 2003, which took effect on 1 May 2003. Section 8 “The Health Care of Officers and Social Guarantees Related Thereto” of the Statute does not provide for compulsory health and life insurance of officers with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of their official duties and the payment of insurance benefits due to an injury in the course of execution of their official duties.

The interior service is based on the principles of inter alia equality, compensation of peculiarities of the service, legitimate expectations and respect to the acquired rights, permanent execution of general duties by an officer (Paragraph 1 of Article 3 of the Statute (wording of 29 April 2003)). The principle of compensation of the peculiarities of the interior service consolidated in Paragraph 7 (wording of 29 April 2003) of Article 3 of the Statute, whereby respective social guarantees compensate the service peculiarities of officers (increased risk to life and health, tightened responsibility, longer work hours and various limitations related with the service). The principles of legitimate expectations and the respect to the acquired rights as consolidated in Paragraph 8 (wording of 29 April 2003) of Article 3 of the Statute give rise to a presumption that, while choosing the interior service, persons are certain that the state will ensure the rights and social guarantees of officers as established by the state itself, therefore, the right legitimately acquired by officers to certain social guarantees, according to this Statute and other laws, should be applied to the entire period of their service. Article 1 (wording of 29 April 2009) of the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Implementation of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute consolidates the continuation of the service, while Paragraph 2 (wording of 29 April 2009) of Article 2 thereof establishes that the social guarantees valid before the coming into effect of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute shall be continued to be applied inasmuch as they are not in conflict with the Statute.

In the opinion of the petitioner, the said provisions mean that police officers, having chosen the service in the police in the course of validity of the Law on the Police, which, as mentioned, provided for compulsory life and health insurance with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of their official duties and the type of social support related therewith—the disbursement of insurance benefits due to an injury in the course of execution of their official duties—had grounds to expect that the state will adhere to Paragraph 1 of Article 48 and Article 52 of the Constitution and to the constitutional principles of the protection of legitimate expectations, legal certainty, and legal security and that it will not reduce their social guarantees. However, the legislator reduced the scope of social guarantees.

1.2. On the other hand, upon coming into effect of the Law of the Interior Service Statute on 1 May 2003, as previously, the relations of compulsory life and health insurance of officers with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of their official duties were regulated by Government Resolution No. 530 “On the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty” of 5 December 1991 (with subsequent amendments and supplements), however, no juridical basis existed for such legal regulation.

2. The Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, grounds its petition on the following arguments.

Prior to 1 May 2003, when the Law on the Police became no longer valid and the Interior Service Statute became effective, the relations of life and health insurance of police officers with the funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of their official duties was regulated by Article 48 (wording of 9 June 1998) of the Law on the Police and the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty approved by Government Resolution No. 530 “On the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty” of 5 December 1991 (with subsequent amendments and supplements). These things are not discussed in the Statute. However, Government resolution No. 530 of 5 December 1991 remained valid, Item 1 (wording of 23 December 2002) whereof provides for the further provision of this social guarantee to police officers, although, under Paragraph 2 (wording of 29 April 2003) of Article 2 of the Law on the Implementation of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute, the social guarantees which had been valid before the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute came into effect shall be further applied inasmuch as they are not in conflict with the Interior Service Statute. Therefore, the Statute, in comparison to the Law on the Police, aggravated the social guarantees of the interior service officers (inter alia police officers) that had respective legitimate expectations.

III

In the course of the preparation of the case for the Constitutional Court hearing written explanations were received from the representatives of the Seimas, the party concerned, who were J. Andriuškevičiūtė, E. Mušinskis, senior adviser of the Law Department of the Office of the Seimas (representing the Seimas, the party concerned, in the part of the case according to petition No. 1B-08/2005 of the Vilnius Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner), and the Member of the Seimas V. V. Margevičienė, wherein it is stated that the disputed provisions of the Statute are not in conflict with the Constitution, also written explanations of the representative of the Government, the party concerned, who was A. Sodonis, wherein it is stated that the Conditions are not in conflict with Article 40 of the Interior Service Statute.

1. The position of the representatives of the Seimas, the party concerned, is grounded on the following arguments.

1.1. According to J. Andriuškevičiūtė, the compensation of damages emerging due to health disturbance or perishing of an officer or a cadet is one of the ways of social security in the event of unemployment due to health disturbance. The obligation to compensate such damage may be implemented by way of rendering payment of an established size directly from the state budget on the conditions and pursuant to the procedure established by the law or upon insurance of the civil liability by the state. The way of payment as chosen in Article 40 of the Statute is the direct indemnity of damages, while the indemnity of damages is differentiated and individualized, since the size of the compensation depends on the wages of the officer, which is analogous to the income subject to insurance as defined in Paragraph 4 of Article 2 of the Republic of Lithuania Law on the State Social Insurance. Under this paragraph, income subject to insurance is the total income of a person, wherefrom state social insurance contributions, as well as state social insurance benefits of sickness, maternity, maternity (paternity), professional rehabilitation, sickness due to accidents at work and professional sicknesses, and state social insurance benefits of unemployment, shall be counted under the procedure stipulated in this law and must be paid. Such establishment of connection between the size of indemnity and the wages is analogous to that, which would be established for health and life insurance of officers.

If the health and life insurance of officers and servicemen was consolidated in the Statute, the same event insured against would be indemnified twice: by way of payment of the compensation established in Article 40 of the Statute from funds of the internal service establishment and the insurance benefit through an insurance company. But the state has no obligation to indemnify damages due to the same event in several ways and by exceeding the size of the damages, since that would violate the balance of private and public interests and would be in conflict with the constitutional principles of a state under the rule of law and proportionality.

In addition, officers are entitled to pensions of two types: first, the state pension of officers and servicemen paid under the Republic of Lithuania Law on the State Pensions of Officials and Servicemen of the Interior, the Special Investigation Service, State Security, National Defence, the Prosecutor's Office, the Department of Prisons and of the Establishments and State Enterprises Which are Subordinate to the Latter and, second, the pension of lost working capacity of officers and servicemen (invalidity pension of I, II, III group until 1 July 2005), paid to officers that lost working capacity due to health disturbance. The same health disturbance entitles officers and servicemen to the second pension allocated pursuant to the Republic of Lithuania Law on State Social Insurance Pensions, while pursuant to Article 41 of the Statute, in the event of sickness, accident or nursing, a certificate of working incapacity is issued to officers and average wages are paid over that period.

According to J. Andriuškevičiūtė, Article 40 of the Statute regulates the relations of compensations, while Government Resolution No. 530 of 5 December 1991 regulates the relations of payment of insurance with state funds and compensations due to the injury or death in the line of duty. In her opinion, the subject of the dispute in the case considered by the Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court is not regarding the death or health disturbance of an officer or a cadet, but regarding insurance with state funds due to the death or health disturbance of an officer or a cadet, therefore one is to doubt whether an assessment may be made of the compliance of the disputed legal regulation established by the Government with Article 40 of the Statute. Whereas, the consolidation of the health and life insurance of officers of the interior with the state funds in Item 1.1 of the Statute interferes with the competence of the legislator, since such obligation of the state (like the empowerment to the Government to regulate the conditions and procedure of such insurance) to insure health and life of officers of the interior service is established neither in the Statute nor in other laws.

1.2. E. Mušinskis and the Member of the Seimas V. V. Margevičienė, stating that the petition of the Vilnius Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, is analogous to the petition of the Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, assented to the arguments of J. Andriuškevičiūtė.

2. The position of the representative of the Government, the party concerned, is grounded on the fact that, according to him, the articles of the disputed section of the Statute are to be construed by taking account of Article 3 of the Statute, whereby the principles of compensation of the peculiarities of the service, the legitimate expectations and respect to the acquired rights, and of Paragraph 2 of Article 2 of the Law on the Implementation of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute, whereby the social guarantees valid before the coming into effect of the law on approval of the Statute are further applied inasmuch as they are not in conflict with the Statute. Thus, it is obvious that the legislator not only did not prohibit the insurance of police officers against accidents, but even established its continuation as a social guarantee wherefore legitimate expectations of officers had emerged. In the opinion of A. Sodonis, the jurisprudence of the Supreme Administrative Court of Lithuania (decision of 31 August 2004 in administrative case No. A8-714-04, ruling of 21 June 2005 in administrative case No. A-11-726-05) substantiates this position. In addition, upon adoption of the Law on the Amendment and Supplement of the Republic of Lithuania Interior Service Statute and the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Implementation of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute adopted by the Seimas on 19 July 2006 that came into effect on 1 November 2006, the textual expression of the legal regulation of insurance of officers against accidents was specified, thus, it was confirmed that officers are insured against accidents.

IV

In the course of the preparation of the case for the judicial consideration written explanations were received from R. Kairelis, State Secretary of the Ministry of Social Security and Labour of the Republic of Lithuania, and M. Mikaila, Director of the Board of the State Social Insurance Fund under the Ministry of the Social Security and Labour.

V

1. At the Constitutional Court hearing, the representatives of the Seimas, the party concerned, who were the Member of the Seimas, V. V. Margevičienė and J. Andriuškevičiūtė, virtually repeated the arguments set forth in their written explanations and presented additional explanations.

2. At the Constitutional Court hearing, the representative of the Government, the party concerned, who was A. Sodonis, virtually repeated the arguments set forth in his written explanations and presented additional explanations.

The Constitutional Court

holds that:

I

1. The Vilnius Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, requests to investigate whether Section 8 “The Health Care of Officers and Social Guarantees Related Thereto” of Chapter II of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute to the extent that, according to the petitioner, the scope of social guarantees was reduced and compulsory health and life insurance of officers with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of their official duties and insurance indemnity, if the officer was injured in the course of execution of official duties, were renounced, is not in conflict with Paragraph 1 of Article 48, Article 52 of the Constitution, with the constitutional principles of a state under the rule of law, the protection of legitimate expectations, legal certainty, and legal security, also whether Items 14, 15 (wording of 23 December 2002) of the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty approved by Government Resolution No. 530 “On the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty” of 5 December 1991 to the extent that it is established that the territorial unit of the Board of the State Social Insurance Fund should decide regarding the payment of the insurance sums to the officers specified in Item 1.1 of these conditions upon their injury in the course of execution of their official duties, while the places of employment of the statutory officers specified in Item 1.1 of these conditions shall disburse the insurance sums to these officers, are not in conflict with Paragraph 3 of Article 40 of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute 40 (Petition No. 1B-08/2005);

The Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, requests to investigate whether Article 40 of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute is not in conflict with Paragraph 1 of Article 29, Paragraph 1 of Article 48, Article 52 of the Constitution, and with the principles of a just civil society and state under the rule of law which, according to the petitioner, are consolidated in the Preamble to the Constitution, as well as whether the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty approved by Government Resolution No. 530 “On the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty” of 5 December 1991 are not in conflict with Article 40 of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute (Petition No. 1B-12/2005).

2. In the resolution parts of their rulings wherewith they applied to the Constitutional Court, the Vilnius Regional Administrative Court and the Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioners, give no indication as to the compliance of which wording of provisions of the Statute with the Constitution they dispute. However, the material of their petitions and the administrative cases wherein the rulings were adopted regarding the application to the Constitutional Court, suggest that the provisions of the Statute are set forth in the primary wording of 29 April 2003.

The Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, in the resolution part of its ruling whereby it applied to the Constitutional Court, gives no indication as to the compliance of which wording of provisions of the Conditions with Article 40 of the Statute it disputes, also in which wording the said article of the Statute is set forth, however, the material of its petition and the administrative case wherein the ruling was adopted regarding the application to the Constitutional Court suggest that the provisions of the disputed Conditions are set forth in the wording of 23 December 2002, while Article 40 of the Statute is set forth in the wording of 29 April 2003.

3. Although the Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, requests to investigate whether inter alia the entire Conditions (wording of 23 December 2002) approved by Government resolution No. 530 of 5 December 1991 are not in conflict (to the specified extent) with Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003) of the Interior Service Statute, however, it is clear from the arguments of its petition that it doubts only as regards the compliance of only Items 14, 15 (wording of 23 December 2002) of the Conditions, but not the compliance of the entire Conditions with Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003) of the Statute.

4. The material of the petitions and the administrative cases of the Vilnius Regional Administrative Court and the Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioners, wherein they adopted their rulings to apply to the Constitutional Court, suggest that the compliance of Section 8 “The Health Care of Officers and Social Guarantees Related Thereto” (wording of 29 April 2003) of Chapter II inter alia Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003) of the Statute with the Constitution and the compliance of Items 14, 15 of the Conditions (wording of 23 December 2002) with Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003) of the Statute are disputed in the aspect that respective provisions regulated the social guarantees of officers of the statutory establishments of the interior and of the interior service system of the governance area of the Ministry of the Interior (hereinafter also referred to as the MI), however, not those of all officers, but the police officers only, and those only who were admitted to service prior to 1 May 2003 (i.e. before the coming into effect of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute, while the Law on the Police was still valid).

5. The Vilnius Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, disputes the compliance of Section 8 “The Health Care of Officers and Social Guarantees Related Thereto” (wording of 29 April 2003) of Chapter II of the Statute (to the specified extent and in the specified aspect) inter alia with the constitutional principles of a state under the rule of law, the protection of legitimate expectations, legal certainty, and legal security, while the Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, disputes the compliance of Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003) of the Statute (to the specified extent and in the specified aspect) with inter alia the principles of a just civil society and state under the rule of law which, according to the petitioner, are consolidated in the Preamble to the Constitution. The Constitutional Court in it acts has stated more than once that the constitutional principle of a state under the rule of law may not be construed as the one consolidated only in the Preamble to the Constitution, that it may not be identified only with the striving for an open, just, harmonious civil society and state under the rule of law declared in the Preamble to the Constitution; the investigation of the compliance of legal acts (parts thereof) with the striving for an open, just, harmonious civil society and state under the rule of law declared in the Preamble to the Constitution implies the investigation into their compliance with the constitutional principle of a state under the rule of law. It has been stated in the acts of the Constitutional Court more than once that the protection of legitimate expectations, legal certainty, and legal security are inseparable elements of a state under the rule of law. The above requests of the petitioners (to the specified extent and in the specified aspect) are to be treated as requests to investigate the compliance of respective legal regulation with the constitutional principle of a state under the rule of law.

II

On the compliance of Section 8 “The Health Care of Officers and Social Guarantees Related Thereto” (wording of 20 April 2003) of Chapter II, inter alia Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003) thereof, of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute with Paragraph 1 of Article 29, Paragraph 1, Article 48, Article 52 of the Constitution and the constitutional principle of a state under the rule of law.

1. The Vilnius Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, disputes the compliance of Section 8 “The Health Care of Officers and Social Guarantees Related Thereto” (wording of 29 April 2003) of Chapter II of the Statute (to the extent that, according to the petitioner, the scope of social guarantees was reduced to police officers and compulsory health and life insurance of officers with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of their official duties and insurance benefits, if the officer was injured in the course of execution of official duties, were renounced), while the Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, disputes the compliance of Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003) of the Statute with Paragraph 1 of Article 29, Paragraph 1 of Article 48, Paragraph 52 of the Constitution, and the constitutional principle of a state under the rule of law. It was mentioned that the compliance of Section 8 “The Health Care of Officers and Social Guarantees Related Thereto” (wording of 29 April 2003) of Chapter II, inter alia Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003), of the Statute with the Constitution is disputed in the aspect that the respective provisions regulated the social guarantees of officers of statutory establishments of the interior and of the interior service system of the governance area of the MI, however, not of all officers, but only of the police officers, and only those who were admitted to service prior to 1 May 2003 (i.e. before the coming into effect of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute, when the Law on the Police was still valid).

2. The doubts of the Vilnius Regional Administrative Court and the Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioners, are grounded on the fact that on 1 May 2003, upon coming into effect of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute, the social guarantees, the compulsory health and life insurance of officers with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of their official duties and the insurance benefits, if the officer was injured in the course of execution of official duties, as previously provided for in the Law on the Police which lost its validity on 1 May 2003, were no longer there.

3. According to the petitions of the Vilnius Regional Administrative Court and the Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioners, while deciding, whether Section 8 “The Health Care of Officers and Social Guarantees Related Thereto” (wording of 29 April 2003) of Chapter II, inter alia Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003), of the Statute is not in conflict (to the specified extent and in the specified aspect) with the Constitution, one is to elucidate the respective legal regulation established in the Law on the Police, which, as mentioned above, became no longer valid upon coming into effect of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute.

4. On 11 December 1990, the Supreme Council adopted the Law on the Police; this law came into effect on the day of its adoption (pursuant to Item 1 of the Supreme Council Resolution No. I-852 “On Coming into Effect of the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Police” of 11 December 1990).

Article 46 of the Law on the Police (wording of 11 December 1990) inter alia established that the state shall guarantee social care to police officers who lost working capacity in the course of execution of their official duties (Paragraph 1), also that the state shall guarantee insurance against accidents to police officers serving in the police of the Republic of Lithuania (Paragraph 2). It was established in Article 48 (wording of 11 December 1990) of the above-mentioned law: upon perishing of a police officer who executed his official duties, his family shall be disbursed a one-time compensation in the size of his wages of ten years (120 months), and he shall be buried at the expense of the state according to the manners of the residence (Paragraph 1); to a police officer who was injured in connection with his service in the police, a compensation in the size of his wages of one to five years (12 to 60 months) shall be disbursed depending on the degree of the injury (Paragraph 2); police officers are indemnified for material damages which they incurred in connection with their service in the police (Paragraph 3).

5. The Law on the Police (wording of 11 December 1990) was more than once amended and/or supplemented, however, till 1 May 2003, when this law became no longer valid, the provisions of Article 46 (wording of 11 December 1990) were not amended or supplemented, while Article 48 was amended only once by Article 1 of the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Amendment of Article 48 of the Law on the Police and on Supplementing It with Article 481 adopted by the Seimas on 9 June 1998, which came into effect on 24 June 1998.

5.1. Article 48 of the Law on the Police (wording of 9 June 1998) inter alia established that compulsory life and health insurance of police officers with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of official duties shall be provided (Paragraph 1), also that insurance benefits shall not be disbursed, if the officer perished or was injured while committing an intentional crime, the cause of perishing or injury of the officer was intoxication with alcohol, narcotic, psychotropic or intoxicating substances not connected with execution of his official duties, the officer committed suicide, attempted suicide or deliberately injured himself, the perishing or injury of the officer was caused by driving a vehicle without the right to drive it or transfer of driving thereof to a person intoxicated with alcohol, narcotic, psychotropic or intoxicating substances or to the one having no right to drive it, the health disorder of the officer or his death was caused by a sickness or war actions and if this was not connected with the execution of his official duties (Paragraph 3).

5.2. The new Article 481 (wording of 9 June 1998) of the Law on the Police was designed for the compensations in the event of perishing or health disorder of a police officer, whereby, upon perishing of a police officer executing his official duties, a one-time compensation in the size of his wages of ten years (120 months) had to be disbursed in equal parts to his spouse, juvenile children (adoptees) (until they turn 16 years old, while to those studying in the day-time department of educational establishments registered under the established procedure, until they turn 24), to children of the deceased born after his death, to father (mother) and the persons incapable of working that were sustained by the deceased or were entitled to his sustenance on the day of death thereof, while the deceased shall be buried at the expense of the state (Paragraph 1), and a police officer who was injured in the course of execution of his official duties and thereupon experienced a health alteration and his capacity to the service was reduced, regardless of the insurance benefits, had to be paid a compensation of the size of his wages from one to five years (from 12 to 60 months) (Paragraph 2); the disbursement of compensations was not made under the same circumstances as for the disbursements of insurance against accidents in the course of execution of official duties (Paragraph 4).

5.3. One is to note in this context that it is clear from travaux préparatoires of the Law on the Amendment of Article 48 of the Law on the Police and on Supplementing It with Article 481 that one of the purposes of this law (taking account of the Constitution Court Ruling “On the compliance of Item 4 of the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty approved by the 5 December 1991 Government Resolution No. 530 with Article 48 of the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Police” of the of 3 December 1997) was to correct the structure of support to be provided to police officers (according to the grounds of origination of the entitlement to such support) and to establish the conditions of payment of compensations and insurance benefits: in case the police officer perished or was injured in the course of execution of his official duties when health alterations persisted and his capacity to the service was reduced, both, the compensations and the insurance benefits had to be paid, while in other cases of injury of officers only the insurance benefits had to be paid.

6. Summing up, one is to hold that since the very coming into effect of the Law on the Police, both compensations to police officers were established in the event of their perishing or health disorder, and insurance benefits have been established according to compulsory health and life insurance with the state funds against accidents in the course of execution of their official duties. Prior to 24 June 1998, when the Law on the Amendment of Article 48 of the Law on the Police and on Supplementing It with Article 481 came into effect, no distinction was made, when the above-mentioned compensations and insurance benefits and when only insurance benefits had to be disbursed: due to the same event insured against both the insurance benefit and the compensation could be paid. Later, in the event of perishing or health disorder of an officer, when the health alterations persisted and his capacity to the service was reduced, the compensations as well as insurance benefits had to be disbursed under the compulsory health and life insurance with funds of the state against accidents in the course of execution of official duties, while under all other circumstances of injury of officers only insurance benefits had to be disbursed (according to the compulsory health and life insurance with funds of the state against accidents in the course of execution of official duties).

By the way, the above-mentioned insurance benefits (regardless of the name thereof) were in no way connected with any insurance instalments, which, pursuant to the Law on the Police or other legal acts, would be paid for the above-mentioned officers to the state budget, to the State Social Insurance Fund or anywhere else. Such instalments were not paid.

7. One is to emphasize that, since the very day of coming into effect of the Law on the Police, police officers have had a reasonable and legitimate expectation that if they, in the course of execution of official duties, will perish or their health will be damaged so that health alterations will persist and their capacity to the service will be reduced, they (in the event of perishing, their spouses, juvenile children (adoptees) etc.) pursuant to laws will be provided proper state support compensating losses. These expectations are protected and defended by the Constitution that subsequently came into effect. The above-mentioned support, when one heeds inter alia the constitutional imperatives of social harmony and justice may neither turn into a privilege nor be discriminatory: it should correspond to the possibilities of the society. The establishment and amendment of the structure of support (inter alia constituent parts thereof) to be provided to police officers is the competence of the legislator; in itself the possibility of changing the structure of this support does not negate the obligation of the state to provide proper support to police officers (in the event of their perishing, to their spouses, children (adoptees) etc.), the life or health whereof was damaged in the course of execution of their official duties. Therefore, compensations in the event of perishing or health disorders of police officers and insurance benefits according to compulsory life and health insurance with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of their official duties established in the Law on the Police may not be construed as independent social guarantees in regard that, purportedly, each of them independently of the other created a reasonable and legitimate expectation that every time when a police officer in the course of execution of official duties will perish or his health will be damaged so that alterations of his health will persist and his capacity to the service will be reduced, he (in the event of his perishing, his spouses, children (adoptees) etc.) will be paid both the compensations and the specified insurance benefits. Such construction would be constitutionally groundless, since it would mean that the legislator, upon once establishing by law a certain structure of the support to be provided to police officers, may not change such a structure, consequently, taking into account the needs and possibilities of society and of the state, that it may not correct and rationalize the social policy of the state and respectively amend the legal regulation implementing it, as well as the legal regulation consolidating certain social guarantees.

In this context one is to mention that the Law on the Amendment of Article 48 of the Law on the Police and on Supplementing It with Article 481 (wording of 9 June 1998) was designed precisely for the correction of the structure and conditions of support to police officers (according to the grounds of origination of the right to receive such support).

8. Alongside, it is to be noted that the Constitution protects and defends the acquired rights, therefore, the correction of the social policy, the reorganization of the system of social guarantees or of individual social guarantees of the state should be constitutionally grounded; if in the course of reorganization of the system of social guarantees or the structure of individual social guarantees the extent of social guarantees is reduced, let alone certain social guarantees disappear, a mechanism of just compensation of incurred losses should be established to the individuals to whom those social guarantees were reasonably established, and if those guarantees have to compensate the losses, which an individual may incur due to his own activities (inter alia due to his service to the state), a period should also be provided so that it would be sufficient to those individuals (being in respective work and executing respective service according to the preceding legal regulation entitling to respective social guarantees) to prepare for respective changes. If the necessity to establish a respective social guarantee arises from the Constitution, such social guarantee generally may not be subject to cancellation prior to the consolidation of the other one instead.

It is also to be noted that the social orientation of the state consolidated in the Constitution generally obligates the state to respect the imperative of substantiality of guarantees of social (material) character, thus obligates to respectively revise (increase the sizes) of social (material) guarantees once established (and applied), if economic, social situation changes so that those established (and applied) guarantees depreciate considerably, moreover, if they generally become nominal (herewith making an exception regarding a proportional and provisional reduction of benefits, whenever necessary for the protection of other constitutional values) (Constitutional Court ruling of 22 October 2007).

9. On 29 April 2003 the Seimas adopted the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute, which came into effect on 1 May 2003. By Article 1 of this law the Interior Service Statute was approved, while by Article 2 thereof the Law on the Police (wording of 11 December 1990 with subsequent amendments and supplements) was recognized as no longer valid. It is inter alia established in Article 1 of the Statute (wording of 29 April 2003) that this statute shall establish the principles of the interior service, the status of officers of the interior system, as well as social and other guarantees.

In the Statute the system of the interior service was defined as the entirety of statutory establishments of the interior and of officers of the interior system under the governance of the MI and interrelations among them (Paragraph 2 of Article 2), an establishment of the interior (or a statutory establishment of the interior) was defined as a public legal person implementing state policy in the area of the public safety under the governance of the MI, the service of officers whereof shall be arranged on statutory grounds (Paragraph 3 of Article 2), an officer of the interior service system is defined as a statutory state servant, the service whereof shall be regulated by the Statute and/or who has empowerments of public administration with regard to persons not subordinated to him (Paragraph 4 of Article 2). It was established that an establishment of the interior is a central establishment of the interior (the Police Department under the MI, the State Boarder Guard Service under the MI, the Fire and Rescue Department under the MI, the Financial Crime Investigation Service under the MI, the VIP Protection Department under the MI), the Police Public Security Division (service) and other establishments of the interior (territorial, specialized and other establishments subordinate to the central establishments of the interior), the interior professional training establishments (Article 4). Also the principles were consolidated, upon which the interior service is grounded, inter alia the principles of equal rights, compensation of the peculiarities of the service, legitimate expectations and respect to the acquired rights (Paragraph 1 of Article 3). In the context of the constitutional justice case at issue it is to be mentioned that Paragraph 8 of Article 3 of the Statute provides that “pursuant to the principle of legitimate expectations and respect to the acquired rights, it is presumed that individuals, while choosing the interior service, are certain that the state will ensure the rights and social guarantees established by the state itself, therefore, according to this Statute and other laws, the right legitimately acquired by officers to certain social guarantees should be applied to the entire service period”.

10. One is to state that social guarantees established in the Statute are applicable not only to police officers, but also to other officers of the interior service system in service at the establishments of the interior.

11. Section 8 “The Health Care of Officers and Social Guarantees Related Thereto” (wording of 29 April 2003) of Chapter II of the Statute disputed in this constitutional justice case contained Articles 39-42. Only Article 40 of the Statute, the compliance with the Constitution whereof is disputed by the Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court was directly intended for the social guarantees in the event of perishing or health disorder of inter alia police officers executing their official duties. Other articles of Section 8 “Health Care of Officers and Social Guarantees Related Thereto” (wording of 29 April 2003) of Chapter II of the Statute were either not related or only indirectly related thereto.

11.1. Article 40 of the Statute “Compensations in the Event of Perishing or Health Disorder of an Officer or a Cadet” (wording of 29 April 2003) established the following:

1. Upon perishing of an officer who executed his official duties, also in cases when his death is related with his service, within one year after the death of the officer a onetime compensation in the size of 120 monthly wages shall be paid in equal parts to his family: to children (to adoptees, also to children who were born after his death) until they turn 18 years old, also to children (to adoptees) who study in day-time departments of educational establishments registered according to the established procedure until they turn 24 years old, to a spouse, to father or mother, and to the persons incapable of working that were sustained by the officer or were entitled to his sustenance.

2. A perished officer or a cadet shall be buried with funds of the state and his kin shall be paid a pecuniary compensation in the size of 40 MSL (minimum subsistence level) to cover the expenses of the funeral. Under the procedure stipulated by laws the state shall reimburse the expenses of transportation to Lithuania of the remains of an officer or a cadet who perished while executing his official duties or in the course of professional training abroad. The inventory of burial expenses to be reimbursed by the sate shall be established by the Government or an institution authorized by it.

3. A compensation in the size of wages from one to five years (from 12 to 60 months) shall be paid to an officer who was injured or got a serious health disorder in the course of execution of his official duties or due to his service. The following compensations shall be established:

1) in the size of wages of 60 months to invalids of the I group due to injury;

2) in the size of wages of 48 months to invalids of the II group due to injury;

3) in the size of wages of 36 months to invalids of the III group due to injury;

4) in the size of wages of 24 months in the event of a serious health disorder;

5) in the size of wages of 18 months in the event of an average health disorder;

6) in the size of wages of 12 months in the event of a light health disorder.

4. In the event of perishing or injury of a cadet of professional educational institutions of the interior during professional or introductory training compensations shall be paid under the conditions and pursuant to the procedure established in Paragraphs 1 and 3 of this Article, excluding that the size of the compensation shall be calculated according to minimum monthly wages established by the Government at the time of the event.

5. Whether perishing or health disorder of an officer is related with the execution of official duties or with the service, and of a cadet with professional or introductory training, shall be established under the procedure stipulated by the Minister of the Interior.

6. Compensations established in this Article shall not be paid, if:

1) an officer or a cadet perished or was injured while committing an intentional crime or a misdemeanour;

2) the cause of perishing or injury of the officer was intoxication with alcohol, narcotic, psychotropic or other intoxicating materials not connected with execution of his official duties, while the cause of perishing or injury of the cadet was not related with his professional or introductory training;

3) an officer or a cadet committed suicide, attempted suicide or deliberately injured himself;

4) an officer or a cadet perished or was injured during a car accident if he was driving a vehicle without the right to drive it or transferred the driving thereof to a person intoxicated with alcohol, narcotic, psychotropic or other intoxicating materials or to the one having no right to drive it;

5) the health disorder or death of an officer or a cadet was caused by a sickness and this was not connected with the execution of official duties or professional or introductory training;

6) the health disorder or death of an officer or a cadet was a deliberate violation of safety rules not related with the official necessity.

7. If an officer or a cadet perished or was injured due to his own carelessness, taking account of the extent of his guilt, the compensation may be reduced or not disbursed. Disputes regarding the refusal to disburse compensation shall be settled under the procedure stipulated by laws.

8. The degree of severity of the health disorder of an officer or a cadet shall be established by the Central Medical Expert Commission pursuant to the procedure stipulated by the Government.”

11.2. In Article 39 “The Health Care of Officers” (wording of 29 April 2003) of the Statute inter alia the following is established: sources of remuneration of health care services for officers (Paragraph 1); establishments providing primary, secondary and tertiary health care services (Paragraphs 2, 3); establishments performing periodic compulsory medical examinations of officers, the establishment of performance procedure thereof (Paragraph 4); procedure of financing of preventive medical examinations, vaccinations and health improvement services of officers (Paragraph 5); procedure for the performance of health care of officers and service environment thereof and state public health control (Paragraph 6).

In Article 41 “Provisional Incapacity for Work of Officers and the Procedure for Reimbursement Thereof” of the Statute (wording of 29 April 2003) the following is established: procedure for issuance of certificates of incapacity for work and pregnancy as well as delivery leave (Paragraph 1); duration of provisional incapacity for work due to sickness, accident or nursing of officers, duration of pregnancy and delivery leave of female officers, reimbursement conditions, reimbursement, procedure of issuance of a provisional certificate of incapacity for work, inter alia if there are signs of invalidity (Paragraphs 2, 3, 4).

Article 42 “The Reimbursement of Expenses of Medical Rehabilitation, Recreational and Anti-Relapse Treatment” (wording of 29 April 2003) of the Statute establishes reimbursement procedure and sources for medical rehabilitation, preventive medical and psychological rehabilitation, recreation, anti-relapse treatment.

12. One is to state that Article 40 “Compensations in the Event of Death or Health Disorder of an Officer or a Cadet” (wording of 29 April 2003) of the Statute consolidated the social guarantee, the disbursement of compensations in the event of death or health disorder of an officer or a cadet, however, neither this article, nor the Statute in general (wording of 29 April 2003) (hence also Section 8 “Health Care of Officers and Social Guarantees Related Thereto” (wording of 29 April 2003) of Chapter II thereof) contained provisions, providing for compulsory life and health insurance of officers with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of official duties.

However, as it was mentioned above, Paragraph 8 of Article 3 of the Statute establishes that “pursuant to the principle of legitimate expectations and respect to the acquired rights, it is presumed that individuals, while choosing the interior service, are certain that the state will ensure the rights and social guarantees established by the state itself, therefore, according to this Statute and other laws, the right legitimately acquired by officers to certain social guarantees should be applied to the entire service period”.

13. On the very same day (29 April 2003), when the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute was adopted, the Seimas also adopted the Law on the Implementation of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute, which also came into effect on 1 May 2003.

Paragraph 1 of Article 1 “The Continuation of the Service” of the Law on the Implementation of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute establishes that the officers who had been in the service in the system of the interior or in the police faculties of the Law University of Lithuania, before the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute came into effect, shall be regarded, pursuant to the procedure established in the Statute, as officers of the system of the interior, serving according to the procedure established by the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute, while in Paragraph 2 of Article 2 “Implementation of Some Social Guarantees” it is established that the social guarantees which had been valid before the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute came into effect shall be further applied inasmuch as they are not in conflict with the Statute.

The Law on the Implementation of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute was amended and supplemented by the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Supplement of Article 2 of the Law on the Implementation of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute adopted by the Seimas on 27 November 2003, which came into effect on 17 December 2003, as well as by the Law on the Amendment and Supplement of the Republic of Lithuania Interior Service Statute and the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Implementation of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute adopted on 19 July 2006, which came into effect on 1 November 2006, however, the specified provisions of Paragraph 1 of Article 1 and Paragraph 2 of Article 2 of the Law on the Implementation of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute were not amended or supplemented.

14. Stability is not characteristic of the legal regulation established in the Statute. The Statute (wording of 29 April 2003) was more than once amended (or) supplemented (six times in 2004, once in 2005, six times in 2006, once in 2007).

In the context of the constitutional justice case at issue significance is attached to the Law on the Amendment and Supplement of the Republic of Lithuania Interior Service Statute and the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Implementation of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute adopted by the Seimas on 19 July 2006 which came into effect on 1 November 2006 (save the specified exception).

14.1. By Article 15 of Section I of the Law on the Amendment and Supplement of the Interior Service Statute and the Law on the Implementation of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute, Article 40 of the Statute was amended and set forth in the new wording (wording of 29 April 2003) (its title remained the same “Compensations in the Event of Death or Health Disturbance of an Officer or a Cadet”).

Article 40 of the Statute “Compensations in the Event of Death or Health Disturbance of an Officer or a Cadet” (wording of 19 July 2006) establishes the following:

1. Upon perishing of an officer who executed his official duties, if the execution of official duties was related with increased danger or increased risk to the life or health of the officer, also in cases when the cause of the death of the officer was related with the execution of his official duties, if the execution of official duties was related with increased danger or increased risk to the life or health of the officer, also in cases when the officer is killed due to the execution of official duties or the status of the officer, regardless of the insurance benefits disbursed to his family: to children (to adoptees, also to children who were born after the death of an officer) until they turn 18 years old, also to children (to adoptees) who study in day-time departments of educational establishments registered according to the established procedure until they turn 24 years old, to the spouse, to the cohabitant (partner), to father or mother, and to the persons incapable of working who were sustained by the officer or were entitled to his sustenance, within one year after the death of the officer a onetime compensation in the size of 120 monthly wages shall be paid in equal parts.

2. A perished officer or a cadet shall be buried with funds of the state and his kin are paid a pecuniary compensation in the size of 40 minimum subsistence levels to cover the expenses of the funeral. Under the procedure stipulated by legal acts the state shall reimburse the expenses of transportation to Lithuania of the remains of an officer or a cadet who perished while executing his official duties or in the course of professional training abroad. The inventory of burial expenses to be reimbursed by the sate shall be established by the Government or an institution authorized by it.

3. A compensation in the size of the average wages from one to five years (from 12 to 60 months) shall be paid to an officer who was injured or got health disorder in the course of execution of his official duties, if the execution of official duties was related with increased danger or increased risk to the life or health of the officer, or when his injury, self-inflicted injury or health disorder is related with the execution of his official duties, if the execution of official duties was related with increased danger or increased risk to the life or health of the officer, or when his health disorder was caused by the execution of official duties or the status of the officer, a compensation in the size of average wages from one to five years (from 12 to 60 months) shall be paid. The following compensations shall be established:

1) in the size of average wages of 60 months to those who lost 75–100 per cent of working capacity due to injury or self-inflicted injury;

2) in the size of average wages of 48 months to those who lost 60–70 per cent of working capacity due to injury or self-inflicted injury;

3) in the size of average wages of 36 months to those who lost 45–55 per cent of working capacity due to injury or self-inflicted injury;

4) in the size of average wages of 30 months to those who lost up to 40 per cent of working capacity due to injury or self-inflicted injury and thereupon were recognized unfit to the interior service;

5) in the size of average wages of 24 months in the event of a serious health disorder;

6) in the size of average wages of 18 months in the event of an average health disorder;

7) in the size of average wages of 12 months in the event of a light health disorder.

4. In the event of the death, injury, self-inflicted injury or health disorder of a cadet inflicted during professional or introductory training compensations shall be disbursed under the conditions and procedure established in Paragraphs 1 and 3 of this Article, excluding that the size of compensations shall be estimated according to minimum monthly wages established by Government at the timing of the event.

5. Whether the death, injury, self-inflicted injury or health disorder of an officer is related with the execution of official duties or the status of an officer, and with professional or introductory training of a cadet, also whether the execution of official duties, professional or introductory training is related with an increased danger or an increased risk to the life or health of an officer or a cadet, shall be established pursuant to the procedure established by the Minister of the Interior.

6. The compensations established under this article shall not be disbursed, if:

1) an officer or a cadet perished, injured himself, was injured or his health was disordered while committing an intentional crime or an intentional misdemeanour;

2) the death, injury, self-injury or health disorder of an officer was caused by intoxication with alcohol, drugs, psychotropic or other intoxicating substances unrelated with the execution of official services, while the death, injury, self-injury or health disorder of a cadet was caused by intoxication with alcohol, narcotic, psychotropic or other intoxicating substances unrelated with his professional or introductory training;

3) an officer or a cadet committed suicide, attempted suicide or self-inflicted injury;

4) an officer or a cadet perished, was self-injured, injured or his health was disordered during a traffic accident, if this officer or the cadet was driving a vehicle without the right to drive it or transferred the driving thereof to a person intoxicated with alcohol, narcotic, psychotropic or toxic and other intoxicating substances or to the one having no right to drive it;

5) the health disorder or death of an officer or a cadet was caused by sickness, which was unrelated with the execution of official duties or professional or introductory training;

6) health disorder or death of an officer or a cadet was caused by a deliberate violation of safety rules unrelated with official necessity.

7. Disputes regarding the refusal to disburse compensation shall be considered pursuant to the procedures established by legal acts.

8. The degree of severity of health disorder of an officer or a cadet shall be established by the Central Medical Expert Commission pursuant to the List of Heavy, Average and Light Injuries, Traumas and Other Health Disorders of Officers or Cadets of the Interior Service System approved by the Government under the procedure stipulated by the Government.”

14.2. By Article 16 of Section I of the Law on the Amendment and Supplement of the Interior Service Statute and the Law on the Implementation of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute, Paragraph 5 (wording of 29 April 2003) of Article 41 of the Statute was amended and set forth in a new wording, replacing the word “invalidity” with the word “disability”, however this did not change the essence of the legal regulation.

14.3. By Article 21 of Section I of the Law on the Amendment and Supplement of the Interior Service Statute and of the Law on the Implementation of the Law on the Interior Service Statute Article 49 (wording of 29 April 2003) of the Statute was amended and set forth in a new wording (the title of this article was amended too).

Until then Article 49 “Social Insurance and Pensions of Officers” (wording of 29 April 2003) of the Statute established that officers shall be insured in compulsory manner with state social pensions insurance pursuant to the procedure established by the Law on State Social Insurance Pensions (Paragraph 1) and that officers shall be entitled to receive state pensions of officers pursuant to the law regulating the procedure for allocation and disbursement of state pensions to officers and to servicemen (Paragraph 2). Whereas Article 49 “The Insurance of Officers and Cadets and Pensions of Officers” (wording of 19 July 2006) of the Statute establishes the following:

1. For the entire period of the service the health and life of officers shall be insured in a compulsory manner with the state budget funds against accidents while in service, against accidents related with the service, against accidents on the way to and from the service. The sum of health and life insurance of officers shall be equal to the wages disbursed on the month of the event insured against, multiplied by 12, and may not be higher than 48 minimum monthly wages established by the Government.

2. For the entire period of professional and introductory training the health and life of cadets shall be insured in a compulsory manner with the state budget funds against accidents during professional or introductory training. The sum of health and life insurance of a cadet shall equal to the monthly minimum wages multiplied by 12 on the month of the event insured against established by the Government.

3. The procedure of admission of health and life insurance of officers and cadets, of recognition of events insured against, of establishment of the size of benefits and the disbursement thereof shall be established by the Government. The procedure of investigation and recording of accidents while in service, of accidents related with the service, of accidents on the way to and from the service, as well as of accidents during professional and introductory training shall be established by the Minister of the Interior.

4. Insurance benefits shall not be disbursed in the cases established in Paragraph 6 of Article 40 of the Statute.

5. Under the procedure stipulated by the Law on State Social Insurance Pensions officers shall be insured in a compulsory manner with the insurance of state social insurance pensions.

6. Officers shall be entitled to receive the state pension of officers pursuant to the law which regulates the procedure of allocation and disbursement of state pensions of officers and servicemen.

7. Under the procedure established by the Law on the Social Insurance of Unemployment, officers shall be insured in a compulsory manner with the social insurance of unemployment.”

15. One is to state that upon the above-mentioned amendments of the Statute (wording of 19 July 2006, also with subsequent amendments and supplement) such legal regulation is established, which in the aspect, whereby the compliance with the Constitution of Section 8 “The Health Care of Officers and Social Guarantees Related Thereto” (wording of 29 April 2003) (to the specified extent) of Chapter II, inter alia Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003), of the Statute, is disputed by the Vilnius Regional Administrative Court and the Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioners, is analogous to that, which was established in Article 48 (wording of 9 June 1998) and Article 481 (wording of 9 June 1998) of the Law on the Police, inter alia the compulsory life and health insurance of officers for the entire period of their service with funds of the state budget against accidents while in the service, against accidents related with the service against accidents on the way to and from the service is explicitly consolidated; the difference lies only in the disbursement conditions of compensations in the event of the death or health disturbance of an officer or a cadet. Under Articles 49, 40 of the Statute (wording of 19 July 2006), insurance benefits shall be disbursed in all cases when an officer perishes or is injured during service (save events not insured against), and compensations shall only be disbursed when the officer perishes or he is injured (injures himself) in the course of execution of official duties, if the execution of official duties is related with increased danger to life and health of officers, or he is killed, his health is disturbed due to execution of official duties or due to the status of the officer. Such interrelation of the social guarantees is also obvious from the explanatory note to the Draft Law on the Amendment and Supplement of the Interior Service Statute and the Law on the Implementation of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute.

16. In deciding, subsequent to the petitions of the petitioner, whether Section 8 “The Health Care of Officers and Social Guarantees Related Thereto” (wording of 29 April 2003) (to the specified extent and in the specified aspect) of Chapter II, inter alia Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003), of the Statute was not in conflict with Paragraph 1 of Article 29, Paragraph 1 of Article 48, Article 52 of the Constitution, and the principle of a state under the rule of law, one is to note that, as mentioned above:

Paragraph 8 of Article 3 of the Statute establishes that “pursuant to the principle of legitimate expectations and respect of the acquired rights, it is presumed that individuals, while choosing the interior service, are certain that the state will ensure the rights and social guarantees established by the state itself, therefore, according to this Statute and other laws, the right legitimately acquired by officers to certain social guaranties should be applied to the entire service period”;

under Paragraph 2 of Article 2 of the Law on the Implementation of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute, the social guarantees which were valid before the coming into effect of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute shall be further applied inasmuch as they are not in conflict with the Interior Service Statute.

Therefore one is to hold that upon coming into effect of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute police officers who were admitted to service before 1 May 2003 had those social guarantees maintained which they had possessed theretofore, as established by Articles 48 and 481 (wording of 9 June 1998) by the Law on the Police, i.e. the compensations in the event of their perishing or health disorder and compulsory life and health insurance of police officers with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of official duties.

17. It needs to be mentioned that also the Supreme Administrative Court interprets the legal regulation established in the Statute and in the Law on Implementation of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute precisely in this the way (decision of 31 August 2004 in administrative case No. A8-714-04, ruling of 21 June 2005 in administrative case No. A-11-726-05).

18. Having held the above, one is also to hold that the legal regulation approved in disputed Section 8 “The Health Care of Officers and Social Guarantees Related Thereto” (wording of 29 April 2003) of Chapter II, inter alia Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003), of the Statute did not negate the right to work, the right to social support, and the legitimate expectations of the police officers admitted to service before 1 May 2003, nor the principle of equal rights of persons, as consolidated in the Constitution, in their regard.

19. Taking account of the arguments set forth, one is to conclude that Section 8 “The Health Care of Officers and Social Guarantees Related Thereto” (wording of 29 April 2003) of Chapter II, inter alia Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003) of the Statute, to the extent and in the aspect that they did not contain explicit provisions, regulating compulsory life and health insurance of the police officers that were admitted to service before 1 May 2003 with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of official duties, was not in conflict with Paragraph 1 of Article 29, Paragraph 1 of Article 48, Article 52 of the Constitution, and the constitutional principle of a state under the rule of law.

III

On the compliance of inter alia Items 14, 15 (wording of 23 December 2002) of the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty (wording of 23 December 2002) approved by Government Resolution No. 530 “On the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty” of 5 December 1991 with Article 40 of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute (wording of 29 April 2003).

1. The Vilnius Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, requests to investigate whether Items 14, 15 (wording of 23 December 2002) of the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty approved by Government Resolution No. 530 “On the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty” of 5 December 1991, to the extent that it is established that a territorial unit of the State Social Insurance Fund Board should decide regarding the payment of insurance sums to the officers specified in Item 1.1 of these conditions upon their injury in the course of execution of their official duties, while the places of employment of statutory officers specified in Item 1.1 of these conditions shall disburse insurance benefits to these officers, while the Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, requests to investigate whether the Conditions are not in conflict with Article 40 of the Statute ( wording of 29 April 2003). It was noted that the compliance of inter alia Items 14, 15 (wording of 23 December 2002) of the Conditions (wording of 23 December 2002) with Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003) of the Statute is disputed in the aspect that respective provisions regulated social guarantees of officers of statutory establishments of the interior and of the interior service system of the governance area of the MI, however, not of all officers, but only of police officers, and only those who were admitted to service prior to 1 May 2003 (i.e. before the coming into effect of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute, while the Law on the Police was still valid).

2. The doubts of the Vilnius Regional Administrative Court and the Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioners, are grounded on the fact that the social guarantee consolidated in the Conditions, the compulsory health and life insurance of officers with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of their official duties, is not grounded on the law, since, according to the petitioners, the legal regulation of the above-mentioned relations was not consolidated in the Statute (wording of 29 April 2003), inter alia, Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003) thereof, which until then had been consolidated in the Law on the Police (wording of 11 December 1990 with subsequent amendments and supplements).

3. The Conditions were approved by Item 1 of Government Resolution No. 530 “On the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty” of 5 December 1991.

The Conditions were amended and/or supplemented more than once, inter alia by Government Resolution No. 2088 “On the Amendment of Resolution of the Government the Republic of Lithuania No. 530 ‘On the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty’ of 5 December 1991” of 23 December 2002, which came into effect on 1 January 2003, whereby inter alia Item 1 (wording of 31 January 1996), Item 14 (wording of 5 December 1991), and Item 15 (wording of 5 December 1991) were amended.

3.1. Pursuant to Item 1.1 of the Conditions (wording of 23 December 2002) compulsory life and health insurance of statutory officers of the MI, the police and other statutory establishments of the interior with funds of the state budget shall be provided against accidents in the course of execution of official duties.

3.2. Item 14 (wording of 23 December 2002) of the Conditions disputed in this constitutional justice case establishes the following:

A request to disburse the insurance benefits shall be submitted by the insured person, an individual authorized by him, a family member or an individual assigned to receive insurance benefits in the event of death of the insured person, at the territorial unit of the State Social Insurance Fund no later than within 3 years of the day of the event insured against.

With the request, the insured person (or a person authorized by him) should enclose an act of the event written at the place of employment, at the place of the service, training, probation or practical training, a certificate about the wages received at the time of the event insured against or about the minimum monthly wages and a certificate of the personal health care establishment.

Family members of the insured person or an individual assigned by the insured person to receive the insurance benefit, with the request, should enclose documents of personal identity and documents evidencing the entitlement to receive the disbursement, the death certificate of the insured person or a certified copy thereof.

The former place of employment of the deceased insured person, educational or other establishments or a military unit where he served (had office), should submit a certificate about the wages or about the minimum monthly wages and about the assignment (if available) of the insured person or notify of known successors of the insured person to territorial units of the State Social Insurance Fund Board.

If required, territorial units of the State Social Insurance Fund Board shall obtain additional documents from establishments of investigation (pre-trial investigation), courts and other establishments, as required to resolve issues of disbursement of insurance benefits.”

In Item 15 (wording of 23 December 2002) of the Conditions disputed in this constitutional justice case the following was established:

Upon receipt of the documents specified in Item 14 of the insurance conditions, a territorial unit of the State Social Insurance Fund Board should within 10 business days resolve the issue of payment of the insurance sum, notify the beneficiary thereof and send a notification to the place of employment of the insured person about the insurance sum to be disbursed or of the reason of renouncing thereof. When a medical expertise, a conclusion of investigation (pre-trial investigation), of a court or when a certificate of the right of succession is required for the ascertaining of the sum subject to disbursement, the disbursement issue should be resolved and the decisions should be notified to the beneficiary and to the place of employment of the insured person within 10 days of the receipt of these documents.

The places of employment, educational and other establishments or military units of the insured persons shall disburse insurance sums from the funds provided for the purpose in their expenditure estimates.”

4. In this Constitutional Court ruling it has been held that upon coming into effect of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute the social guarantees of police officers who were admitted to service before 1 May 2003 were maintained as established theretofore in Articles 48 and 481 (wording of 9 June 1998) of the Law on the Police, i.e. the compensations in the event of perishing or health disorder and compulsory life and health insurance of police officers with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of official duties.

5. Having held the above, one is also to hold that there is no ground to the presumption of the Vilnius Regional Administrative Court and the Klaipėda Regional Administrative Court, the petitioners, that the compulsory life and health insurance of police officers with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of official duties as consolidated in the Conditions is not grounded on the law. The provisions, whereby the disputed legal regulation established in the Conditions is grounded, are consolidated in Paragraph 2 of Article 2 of the Law on the Implementation of the Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute and in Paragraph 8 of Article 3 of the Statute.

6. Therefore, the compliance of inter alia Items 14, 15 (wording of 23 December 2002) of the Conditions (wording of 23 December 2002) with Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003) of the Statute cannot be questioned only because inter alia the compulsory life and health insurance of the police officers admitted to service before 1 May 2003 with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of official duties established in Items 14, 15 (wording of 23 December 2002) of the Conditions (wording of 23 December 2002) is not grounded on Article 40 of the Statute, since this article of the Statute was designed for compensations disbursed in the event of perishing or health disorder of a police officer.

7. Taking account of the arguments set forth, one is to conclude that the Conditions (wording of 23 December 2002), inter alia Items 14, 15 (wording of 23 December 2002) thereof, in the aspect that Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003) of the Statute did not provide explicit provisions regulating the compulsory life and health insurance of the police officers admitted to service before 1 May 2003 with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of official duties, were not in conflict with Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003) of the Statute.

Pursuant to Articles 102, 105 of the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania, Articles 1, 53, 54, 55, and 56 of the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Constitutional Court, the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Lithuania has passed the following

ruling:

1. To recognize that Section 8 “The Health Care of Officers and Social Guarantees Related Thereto” (wording of 29 April 2003) of Chapter II, inter alia Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003), of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute, (Official Gazette Valstybės žinios, 2003, No. 42-1927), to the extent and in the aspect that they did not contain explicit provisions regulating compulsory life and health insurance of police officers admitted to service before 1 May 2003 with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of official duties, was not in conflict with the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania.

2. To recognize that the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty (wording of 23 December 2002) approved by Government Resolution No. 530 “On the Conditions under Which Persons are Insured by State Funds and of Compensation Payment upon Their Injury or Death in the Line of Duty” of 5 December 1991, inter alia Items 14, 15 (wording of 23 December 2002; Official Gazette Valstybės žinios, 2002, No. 124-566) thereof, in the aspect that Article 40 of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Approval of Interior Service Statute (wording of 29 April 2003) did not contain explicit provisions regulating the compulsory life and health insurance of the police officers admitted to service before 1 May 2003 with funds of the state budget against accidents in the course of execution of official duties, were not in conflict with Article 40 (wording of 29 April 2003) of the Interior Service Statute approved by the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Approval of the Interior Service Statute.

This ruling of the Constitutional Court is final and subject to no appeal.

The ruling is promulgated in the name of the Republic of Lithuania.

Justices of the Constitutional Court:            Armanas Abramavičius

                                                                                Toma Birmontienė

                                                                                Egidijus Kūris

                                                                                Kęstutis Lapinskas

                                                                                Zenonas Namavičius

                                                                                Vytautas Sinkevičius

                                                                                Stasys Stačiokas

                                                                                Romualdas Kęstutis Urbaitis