The Constitution of the Republic of Hungary
In order to facilitate peaceful political transition into a constitutional
state ready to realize a multiparty system, introduce parliamentary democracy,
and promote conversion to a socially alert market economy, Parliament submits
the following text as the authorized version - until the ratification of its
replacement - of the Constitution of Hungary.
Hungary is a Republic.
(1) The Republic of Hungary is an independent and democratic constitutional
(2) In the Republic of Hungary all power belongs to the people. The people
exercise their sovereignty through elected representatives or directly.
(3) In this country no activity, whether of a social or state organization,
and no endeavour of any citizen, may be aimed at securing or exercising power by
means of force, or at the exclusive possession of power. Anyone has the right
and the duty to take action against such endeavours in any lawful manner.
(1) In the Republic of Hungary, political parties may be freely founded and
may act in freedom provided they show respect for the Constitution and the
statutes of constitutional law.
(2) The parties are involved in registering and expressing the will of the
(3) The parties may not exercise public power directly. Accordingly, no
party may control or direct any State organ. In order to ensure the effective
separation of the parties from State power, the law determines the social and
public offices that cannot be filled by any member or officer of any party.
The trade unions and other interest organizations protect and represent the
interests of employees, cooperative members, and of entrepreneurs.
The State of the Republic of Hungary safeguards the freedom and power of the
people, the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country, and the
boundaries registered in international treaties.
(1) The Republic of Hungary repudiates war as a means of dealing with
conflicts between nations and refrains from the use of force against the
independence or territorial integrity of other states. It also refrains from
making threats implying recourse to force.
(2) The Republic of Hungary is working for cooperation with all the peoples
and countries of the world.
(3) The Republic of Hungary bears a sense of responsibility for what happens
to Hungarians living outside of its borders and promotes the fostering of their
relations with Hungary.
(1) The legal system of the Republic of Hungary accepts the universally
recognized rules and regulations of international law, and harmonizes the
internal laws and statutes of the country with the obligations assumed under
(2) The law regulates legislative procedures. The votes of two thirds of the
Members of Parliament present are required for passing new legislation.
(1) The Republic of Hungary recognizes the inviolable and inalianable rights
of persons. Ensuring respect and protection for these rights is a primary
obligation of the State.
(2) In the Republic of Hungary the law contains rules on fundamental rights
and obligations, but must not impose any limitations on the essential contents
and meaning of fundamental rights.
(4) In times of emergency, national crises, or extreme danger, the
observation of fundamental rights may be suspended or their exercise curtailed -
except for the fundamental rights specified in Articles 54 through 56,
paragraphs (2) through (4) in Article 57, Articles 60, 66 through 69, and
(1) Hungary has a market economy in which public and private property are to
receive equal consideration and protection under the law.
(2) The Republic of Hungary recognizes and supports the right to enterprise
and the freedom of economic competition.
(1) Any property of the Hungarian State is part of the country's national
(2) The full range of exclusive ownership by, and of the exclusive economic
activities of, the State is determined by the law.
State-owned companies and economic units operate independently in the manner
and with the responsibility defined by the law.
(1) The State supports cooperatives based on voluntary association and
recognizes their autonomy.
(2) The State respects the assets and property of local governments.
(1) The Republic of Hungary guarantees the right to property.
(2) Property may be expropriated only exceptionally when this is a matter of
public interest, and only in the cases and in the manner regulated by law, under
terms of full, unconditional and immediate indemnification.
The Constitution guarantees the right of inheritance.
The Republic of Hungary protects the institution of marriage and the family.
The Republic of Hungary pays special attention to the secure existence,
education and training of young people and protects the interests of youth.
The Republic of Hungary sees to the wants of the needy through a long line of
The Republic of Hungary recognizes and implements everyone's right to a
(1) Parliament is the supreme organ of State power and popular representation
in the Republic of Hungary.
(2) Exercising its rights deriving from the sovereignty of the people,
Parliament ensures the consitutional order of society, and determines the
organization, orientation and conditions of government.
(3) Within this competence, parliament
a) enacts the Constitution of the Republic of Hungary;
b) frames laws;
c) defines the social and economic objectives of the country;
d) checks the balance of State finances and approves the Budget and its
c) decides about the adoption of the Government programme;
f) ratifies the international treaties that are of outstanding significance
for the external relations of the Republic of Hungary;
g) decides on the declaration of a state of war and the questions of
h) in case of a state of war or of the immediate threat of armed attack by a
foreign power (the danger of war) it proclaims a state of emergency and sets up
the National Defence Council;
i) In case of armed action aiming to overthrow the constitutional order to
gain absolute power, in cases of acts of violence committed with arms or by
armed units that jeopardize the lives and material security of citizens on a
mass scale, of natural disasters or serious industrial accidents (hereinafter:
emergency) it declares a state of emergency;
j) decides on the use of the armed forces outside or inside the country;
k) elects the President of the Republic, the Prime Minister, the members of
the Constitutional Court, the ombudsmen to deal with the observation of civil
rights and the rights of national and ethnic minorities, the president and
vice-presidents of the State Audit Office, the president of the Supreme Court
and the chief prosecutor;
1) on the proposition of the Government submitted after consultation with
the Constitutional Court, dissolves local representative bodies whose operation
has been found unconsitutional; decides on the geographical boundaries, the
names, and seats of counties; on the re-registration of some townships as cities
of county status; and on any changes in the borders of the districts of the
m) exercises general amnesty.
(4) For decisions on the cases enumerated in points g), h), i) and j) of para
(3), the votes of two thirds of the Members of Parliament are necessary.
(5) A national plebiscite may be called by Parliament if the decision is
supported by the votes of two thirds of the MPs present at the time.
If Parliament is prevented from making the decisions concerned, the President
of the Republic may call for a state of war, announce a state of emergency, set
up the National Defence Council, and proclaim a state of extreme danger.
(2) Parliament is to be considered incapacitated if it is not in session and
convening it is impossible because of the shortness of time, or because of the
events that have caused the state of war, the emergency, or crisis.
(3) The fact of incapacitation, and therefore the need for proclaiming an
emergency or crisis, is verified by the Speaker of Parliament, the President of
the Constitutional Court and the Prime Minister jointly.
(4) At its first session after its incapacitation, Parliament supervises the
justification of a state of war, state of emergency or crisis, and decides about
the legitimacy of the measures taken. To carry such a decision, the votes of
two thirds of the Members of Parliament are required.
(1) In case of an emergency, the National Defence Council decides about the
deployment of the armed forces outside or inside the country and the
introduction of the emergency measures defined in a separate law.
(2) The President of the Republic presides over the National Defence Council.
The members of the Council are: the Speaker of Parliament, the leaders of the
factions of the parties represented in Parliament, the Prime Minister, the
ministers, and the commander and chief of staff of the Army.
(3) The National Defence Council exercises;
a) the rights temporarily vested in it by Parliament
b) the rights of the President of the Republic, and
c) the rights of the Government.
(4) The National Defence Council may pass decrees in which it may suspend the
force of certain laws or deviate from certain legal provisions. It may also
pass other special measures, but must not suspend the Constitution.
(5) Unless Parliament acts to prolongue their validity, decrees passed by the
National Defence Council go out of force as soon as the given state of emergency
(6) Not even a state of emergency may limit the operation of the
(1) If Parliament is prevented from taking action during a state of
emergency, decision on the deployment of armed forces is up to the President of
(2) During a state of crisis(peril) the emergency measures defined in a
separate law are introduced by a decree of the President of the Republic.
(3) The President of the Republic informs without delay the Speaker of
Parliament about the emergency measures introduced. During any period of
emergency, Parliament - or if the former is hindered, the National Defence
Committee of Parliament - remains in session. Parliament, or the National
Defence Committee, is free to suspend emergency measures the President of the
Republic has called for.
(4) The emergency measures decreed remain in effect for thirty days unless
their validity has been extended by Parliament, or, if Parliament is inhibited,
by its National Defence Committee.
(5) The same rules are to be applied in a state of peril, extreme danger as
in a state of emergency.
To pass a law on the detailed rules applicable during a state of emergency,
peril or crisis, the affirmative votes of two thirds of the MPs present are
(1) Parliament is elected for a term of four years.
(2) Members of Parliament act in the public interest.
(3) Members of parliament are entitled to immunity as defined and
regulated in the law on their legal status.
(4) Members of Parliament are entitled to fees to ensure their independence,
to certain benefits, and to compensation to cover costs.
To pass a law on the amount of the fee, the sums of compensation and on the
range of special concessions, the votes of two thirds of the MPs present are
(5) No Member of Parliament may become President of the Republic, member of
the Constitutional Court, ombudsman; president, vice-president or accountant of
the State Audit Office; judge or prosecutor; or - except for members of the
Government and political state secretaries - work in any organ of state
administration. No MP may be a regular or hold professional status in the armed
forces, in the police and in any security force. The law may also establish
other cases of incompatibility.
(6) To pass the law on the legal status of Members of Parliament, the votes
of two thirds of the MPs present are necessary.
(1) The mandate of a Member of Parliament is terminated
a) with the end of the term of Parliament,
b) with the death of a MP,
c) with the demise of the MP concerned,
d) when incompatibility is declared,
e) if the MP is disfranchised.
(2) If a reason is cited for incompatibility (para (5), Article 20) by any
representative of the House against a Member of Parliament, Parliament decides
whether to pronounce incompatibility.
(3) Addressing a statement to this effect to Parliament, an MP may give up
his mandate. No confirmatory statement from Parliament is necessary for the
resignation to be valid.
(1) Parliament elects its Speaker, deputy speakers, and Clerk from among its
(2) Parliament sets up standing committees from among its members and may
delegate a committee to investigate any given question.
(3) Data requested by parliamentary committees must not be denied; anybody
summoned to testify before a parliamentary committee is obliged to do so.
(1) Parliament holds regular sessions twice a year - from February 1 to June
15, and from September 1 until December 15.
(2) The constituent session of Parliament is convened - for a date within one
month after the elections - by the President of the Republic. Otherwise it is
the duty of the Speaker of Parliament to convene sessions - and each individual
sitting - of Parliament.
(3) If this is requested by the President of the Republic, by the Government,
or by one fifth of the MPs, Parliament must be convened for a special session or
special meeting. The request has to specify the reason for convening
Parliament, the date(s) proposed, and the agenda to be followed.
(4) The President of Parliament may adjourn - for no more than thirty days -
a session of Parliament on one occasion during any given session.
(5) During the adjournment period, the President of the Republic is obliged
to convene Parliament if one fifth of the MPs petition this in writing, within
eight days of his receipt of the request.
The meetings of Parliament are open to the public. However, on the request
of the President of the Republic, the Government, or any MP, Parliament may call
for a meeting in camera if the request is supported by two thirds of the Members
(1) Parliament has a quorum when more than half of the MPs are present.
(2) Parliament passes a decision with the affirmative votes of over half of
the MPs present.
(3) For the amendment of the Constitution, or for passing certain decisions
defined in the Constitution, the affirmative votes of two thirds of the Members
of Parliament are required.
(4) Parliament lays down the rules of procedure and the order of debates in
standing orders for which the votes of two thirds of the MPs present are
(1) Legislation may be initiated by the President of the Republic, the
Government, any parliamentary committee and any Member of Parliament.
(2) The right of legislation is vested in Parliament.
(3) Acts passed by Parliament are signed by the Speaker and sent to the
President of the Republic.
(1) Within fifteen days - or, if the Speaker of Parliament so requests,
within five days - of receipt of the law framed, the President of the Republic
endorses it and sees to its promulgation. Ratified Acts of Parliament have to
be published in the Official Gazette.
(2) If the President of the Republic does not accept the law or some of its
provisions, he may, before signing it but within the deadline set in para (1),
send it back with his comments to Parliament for reconsideration.
(3) Parliament debates the law anew and decides on enactment again. After
the reconsidered Act has been returned to him, the President of the Republic is
bound to sign it and to promulgate it within five days of its receipt.
(4) If the President of the Republic thinks that any provision of the law may
be unconstitutional, he sends it within the deadline set in para (1) to the
Constitutional Court before singing it, and requests a report on its
(5) If the Constitutional Court, after proceeding on the law with the
requested urgency, has found it unconstitutional, the President of the Republic
returns the law to Parliament. Otherwise, he is bound to sign the Act and
promulgate it within five days.
Members of Parliament may put questions to the ombudsmen (parliamentary
commissioners) for the implementation of civil, and national and ethnic minority
rights, to the president of the State Audit Office, and to the president of the
Hungarian National Bank; and address interpellations and questions to the
Government, to any member of the Government, and to the Chief Prosecutor
(Attorney General) on any matter that falls within their competence.
(1) The mandate of Parliament commences with its constituent meeting.
(2) Parliament may proclaim its dissolution even before the expiry of its
(3) The President of the Republic may dissolve Parliament simultaneously with
setting the dates for the new election if
a) Parliament has at least four times within twelve months during its own
mandate withdrawn its confidence from the Government, or
b) in case the mandate of the Government had ended, Parliament failed to
elect within forty days after the date of the first nomination, the candidate
prime-minister put up for the office by the President of the Republic.
(5) Before dissolving Parliament, the president of the Republic is bound to
consult with the Prime Minister, the Speaker of Parliament and with the heads of
the factions of the parties that have representatives in Parliament.
(6) Within three months after the expiry of the term of parliament, its
dissolution or its being dissolved, a new Parliament has to be elected.
Parliament operates until the constituent meeting of the new Parliament.
(1) During the period of an emergency, Parliament may not declare its
dissolution and may not be dissolved.
(2) If the term of Parliament expires during an emergency, its mandate is
automatically extended until the end of the peril.
(3) A Parliament that has dissolved or been dissolved may be reconvened by
the President of the Republic in case of a state of war, the threat of war, or
any other emergency situation. In that case, Parliament itself decides on the
extension of its mandate.
The President of the Republic
(1) The President of the Republic is Hungary's head of State. He stands for
the unity of the nation and safeguards the democratic operation of the State
(2) The President of the Republic is the commander-in-chief of the armed
(1) The President of the Republic is elected by Parliament for a term of five
(2) Any enfranchised citizen who has had his 35th birthday by election day is
eligible for the post of the President of the Republic.
(3) The President of the Republic may be reelected for this office for no
more than one additional term.
(1) The election of the President of the Republic is preceded by nominations.
Written recommendation by at least fifty Members of Parliament is required for
valid candidacy. The list of the candidates who have been validly nominated
must be submitted to the Speaker of Parliament before the votes are called. Any
one Member of Parliament may recommend only one cadidate. The recommendations
of those who have made more than one nomination are declared null and void.
(2) Parliament elects the President of the Republic by secret ballot. The
voting process may have to be repeated several times as needed. If candidate is
elected President of the Republic if he has won two thirds of the votes of the
Members of Parliament.
(3) If no candidate commands this two-thirds majority on the first balloting,
a new vote has to be called on the basis of new recommendation according to para
(1). For election of the second polling, a two-third majority of the votes is
(4) If the required majority has no been produced by the second polling
either, a third voting has to be held. On the third polling, the ballots have
to be cast for one of the two candidate who received the highest number of votes
on the second polling. The President of the Republic is elected on the basis of
the third polling if regardless of the number of voter casting ballots - he has
won the majority of the votes cast.
(5) The voting process has to be completed in the maximum period of three
(1) The President of the Republic is to be elected at least thirty days
before expiry of the mandate of the earlier President, and, if the mandate has
ended before the end of term, after thirty days of expiry.
(2) The date for the presidential election is set by the Speaker of
The elected President of the Republic occupies his post on the expiry of the
mandate of the earlier president, or, in case the mandate has come to an end
prematurely, on the eighth day following the announcement of the election
returns. Prior to entering office, the President of the Republic takes his oath
of office before Parliament.
(1) In case of the temporary incapacitation of the President of the Republic,
or if for some reason his mandate comes to an end prematurely, his competence is
bestowed upon the Speaker of Parliament until the new President of the Republic
has been inducted into office. However, the Speaker of Parliament acting as
President of the Republic may not forward laws to Parliament for reconsideration
or to the Constitutional Court for study; he must not dissolve Parliament and
has the right of granting clemency only to benefit people whose judgement-at-law
has become definitive.
(2) While he is substituting for the President of the Republic, the Speaker
of Parliament must not exercise his rights as a member of Parliament, and his
responsibilities as Speaker are taken over by the deputy speaker designated by
(1) The office of the President of the Republic is incompatible with every
other State, social, and political office or assignment. The President of the
Republic may not pursue any other remuncrative occupation, and, except for
activities enjoying copyright protection - must not accept any other fees.
(2) The votes of two thirds of the MPs present at the sitting are required
for decisions on the President's regular fees, prerogatives and reimbursement on
costs incurred in the fulfilment of duties.
(1) The President of the Republic
a) represents the Hungarian State;
b) concludes international treaties and agreements on behalf of the Republic
of Hungary. If the subject of the agreement belongs under the competence of the
legislation, the prior agreement of Parliament is required for concluding the
c) accredits and receives ambassadors and envoys;
d) sets the dates for the parliamentary elections and for the general
elections of local authorities;
e) may participate in, and have the floor at, the meetings of Parliament and
f) may propose that Parliament take certain measures;
g) may make a motion for the holding of a plebiscite;
h) according to rules defined in a separate law, appoints and relieves of
their duties state secretaries and ombudsmen;
i) on the proposal of persons or organs defined in a separate law, appoints
and relieves the president and vice presidents of the Hungarian National Bank,
and university professors; appoints and relieves of their duties the rectors of
universities; appoints and promotes generals; confirms the president of the
Hungarian Academy of Sciences in his office;
j) confers the titles defined in the law, awards orders of merit and
distinctions, and authorizes using or wearing them;
k) exercises the right of granting elemency in individual cases,
l) decides in citizenship cases;
m) decides all affairs separate laws have referred to his competence.
(2) Every measure and decree of the President of the Republic - except for
those contained in points a), d), c), f) and g) - require countersigning by
the Prime Minister or the competent minister.
(1) The mandate of the President is terminated
a) with expiry of the term of office
b) with the death of the President
c) if there is a state of emergency that makes fulfilling his duties
impossible for a period of over ninety days
d) if incompatibility has been declared
e) if he has resigned
f) if he has been stripped of the presidency.
(2) In case there are reasons to indicate incompatibility in connection with
the person of the President of the Republic in the fulfilment of his office
[para 30, ident (1)], Parliament takes a decision on declaring incompatibility
after a representative has made the relevant motion. To pass the decision, the
affirmative votes of two thirds of the Members of Parliament are required.
Voting is by secret ballot.
(3) The President of the Republic may resign from his post in a statement
addressed to Parliament. For the resignation to take effect, a statement of
acceptance is neccessary from Parliament. Within 15 days after his initial
resignation, the President may be requested by Parliament to reconsider his
decision. If the President of the Republic abides by his decision, Parliament
cannot refuse accepting the resignation.
(4) The President of the Republic may be stripped of his office if in the
performance of his functions he has deliberately flaunted the Constitution or
transgressed any other law.
(1) The person of the President of the Republic is inviolable; his special
protection is ensured by a separate law.
(2) One-fifth of the Members of Parliament may lodge a motion to impeach the
President of the Republic if he has offended against the Constitution or any
(3) To start the impeachment procedure, the votes of two thirds of the
members of Parliament are required. Voting is by secret ballot.
(4) After the decision of parliament until the conclusion of the impeachment
procedures, the President must not exercise his functions.
(5) Judging the offence is within the competence of the Constitutional Court.
(6) If, as a result of the proceedings, the Constitutional Court has
established the violation of the law, it may strip the President of the Republic
of his office.
(1) If impeachment proceedings have been started against the President of the
Republic because of an act subject to criminal persecution committed during his
term of office in connection with his official duties, the Tribunal has to apply
the basic provisions of criminal law procedure as well. A prosecuting
commissioner Parliament has chosen from its own ranks presents the indictment.
(2) The President of the Republic may be held criminally accountable for
other acts only after the termination of his office.
(3) If the Tribunal has established the culpability of the President of the
Republic in a deliberate criminal offence, it may strip him of his office, and
at the same time may apply any measure or punishment specified in the Criminal
Code for the given offence.
The Constitutional Court
(1) The Constitutional Court oversees the constitutionality of legal
provisions and performs other functions the law refers to its competence.
(2) Any law or legal measure found unconstitutional is annulled by the
(3) In the cases defined by the law, anyone may initiate proceedings at the
(4) The fifteen members of the Constitutional Court are elected by
Parliament. A nominating committee comprising of one member from each of the
parties represented in Parliament, proposes the candidates for Constitutional
Court membership. Two thirds of the affirmative votes of the Members of
Parliament are necessary for election to the Constitutional Court.
(5) Outside of the responsibilities deriving from the authority of the
Constitutional Court, the members of the Court must not be affiliated to any
party and must not carry on political activity.
(6) For the ratification of the law on the organization and operation of the
Constitutional Court, two-thirds of the votes of the MPs present are necessary.
Ombudsman for the Protection of Civil Rights
Ombudsman for the Protection of National and Ethnic Minority Rights
(1) It is the duty of the Parliamentary Commissioner (Ombudsman) for Civil
Rights to investigate, or to have investigated, any abuse of constitutional
rights that has come to his attention, and to initiate general or particular
measures for redress.
(2) The Ombudsman for the protection of national and minority rights
investigates, or has investigated, any abuse of nationality or ethnic minority
rights that has come to his attention, and to initiate general or particular
measures for redress.
(3) In cases defined in the law, anyone may propose that the Ombudsman take
(4) The Ombudsmen for civil rights and for nationality and ethnic minority
rights are elected, on the nomination of the President of the Republic, by
Parliament - with two thirds of the affirmative votes of all MPs necessary. For
the protection of certain constitutional rights, Parliament may elect separate
(5) The competence of the Ombudsman for national and ethnic minority rights
is exercised by a body appointed by national and ethnic minority groups and
elected by the Parliament consisting of one person for each nationality and
ethnic minority group, and elected by Parliament.
(6) Each Ombudsman reports on his activities and experiences annually to
(7) For the ratification of the law on Ombudsmen (parliamentary
commissioners), the affirmative votes of two-thirds of the MPs present are
The State Audit Office and The Hungarian National Bank
(1) The State Audit Office is the financial and economic accounting
organization of Parliament. It is its duty to exercise control over the
management of state finances and the Budget, and within this to oversee the
cogency of the Budget Bill and the merit and expediency of each item of
spending. It countersigns contracts on credit claimed by the Budget; oversees
in advance the legality of the spendings the Budget has planned for; checks the
final accounts of the State Budget. The State Audit Office controls the
management of State assets, the wealth-preserving and wealth-increasing work of
State-owned companies and enterprises; and sees to other duties that are part of
its competence under the law.
(2) The State Audit Office is led in its work and controlling activity by
considerations of legality, expediency, and the financial results of the units
concerned. The State Audit Office reports on its findings to Parliament, and
its reports must be made public. The president of the State Audit Office
submits the findings of the Office on the final accounts together with the final
account itself to Parliament.
(3) For the election of the president and vice-presidents of the State Audit
Office, the votes of two thirds of the Members of Parliament are required.
(4) For the ratification of the law on the principles to govern the
organization and operation of the State Audit Office, two thirds of the votes of
the MPs present are necessary.
(1) It is the responsibility of the Hungarian National Bank to issue legal
tender in the manner determined by the law, to protect the stability of the
national currency, and to regulate the circulation of money.
(2) The President of the Hungarian National Bank is appointed by the
President of the Republic for a term of six years.
(3) The President of the Hungarian National Bank presents to Parliament a
report on the activities of the Bank once a year.
(1) The Government consists of
a) The Prime Minister and
b) the ministers.
(2) The Prime Minister's substitute is the minister he has designated.
(3) The Prime Minister is elected by a simple majority vote of the Members of
Parliament. Parliament decides on the election of the Prime Minister and on
acceptance of the Government programme at the same time.
(4) The ministers are proposed by the Prime Minister, and appointed and
relieved of their duties by the President of the Republic.
(5) The Government is formed when the ministers have been appointed. After
the formation of the Government, its members take their oath of office before
The mandate of the Government ends
a) with the formation of the newly elected Parliament
b) with the resignation of the Prime Minister, or the Government
c) with the death of the Prime Minister, or
d) if, in accordance with the contents of para (1), Article 39/A, Parliament
has carried a no-confidence motion in regard to the Prime Minister and elects a
new Prime Minister.
The enumeration of the ministries of the Republic of Hungary is contained in
a separate law.
(1) The Government
a) protects constitutional order, protects and ensures the rights of citizens
b) ensures the implementation of the laws
c) directs and coordinates the work of the ministries and of other organs
directly subordinated to them
d) with the involvement of the Minister of the Interior, it ensures the
control of the legality of the operation of the authorities,
e) ensures the elaboration of social and economic plans and sees to their
f) determines the role of the State in scientific and cultural development
and ensures the conditions for their realization
g) designates the State system of social welfare and medical care provisions,
and ensures the conditions required.
h) it supervises the operation of the armed forces, of the police and of
other law-and-order-maintenance agencies
i) takes the necessary measures to avert the consequences of natural
disasters that jeopardize the security of the life and property of citizens
(from here on, emergency situation), and to ensure public law and order and
j) participates in the determination of foreign policy and concludes
international agreements on behalf of the Government of the Republic of Hungary
k) performs all functions the law refers to its competence.
(2) In its own sphere of functions the Government issues decrees and passes
resolutions. These are signed by the Prime Minister. No decree and resolution
of the Government may be contrary to the law. Decrees issued by the Government
must be promulgated in the Official Gazette.
(3) In an emergency situation the Government, empowered by Parliament, may
pass decrees and measures that deviate from the provisions of certain laws. For
the ratification of the law on emergency rules, the affirmative votes of two
thirds of the MPs present are necessary.
(4) Except for legal provisions, the Government annuls or amends all
resolutions or measures passed by subordinate organs that are contrary to the
In the performance of its functions, the Government cooperates with the
social organizations concerned.
(1) The Prime Minister presides over Government sessions and provides for the
enforcement of Government decrees and resolutions.
(2) The ministers head the branches of public administration within their
scope of functions, and direct the organs subordinated to them in conformity
with legal provisions and Government resolutions. Ministers without portfolio
perform functions designated by the Government.
(3) In the performance of their functions, the Prime Minister and the members
of the Government may issue decrees. However, these must not be contrary to any
law or any government decree and resolution. The decrees have to be promulgated
in the Official Gazette.
Article 38 repealed
(1) In the performance of its functions the Government is responsible to
Parliament. It is bound to render account of its activities regularly to
(2) The members of the Government are responsible for their work to the
Government and to Parliament, and must report on their activities to both.
Their legal status, pay and the manner in which they may be impeached are
regulated by law.
(3) Members of the Government may participate in, and take the floor at, the
sessions of Parliament.
(1) A nonconfidence motion may - with the designation of the preferred
candidate for Prime Minister - be launched against the Prime Minister on the
written proposal of at least one fifth of the Members of Parliament. A
nonconfidence motion against the Prime Minister is to be regarded as a
nonconfidence motion against the Government. If the majority of the Members of
Parliament have expressed nonconfidence in the motion, the candidate named as
the choice for the new Prime Minister must be regarded as elected.
(2) The debate and voting on the motion must be held three days after it has
been submitted at the soonest, and after eight days at the latest.
(3) Through the Prime Minister, the Government may propose a vote of
confidence in compliance with the time limits set in para (2).
(4) Through the Prime Minister, the Government may also recommend that the
voting over the proposal it put forward should be at the same time a vote of
(5) If Parliament does not vote its confidence to the Government as laid down
in paragraphs (3) and (4), the Government must resign.
If the mandate of the Government is terminated, the Government is to stay in
office until the formation of the new Government and to exercise all Government
rights. However, it must not conclude international agreements, and it may
issue decrees only on the basis of express empowerment by the law in special
cases when no delay is permissible.
(1) For the discharge of certain functions, the Government may set up
(2) In any matter coming within the scope of state administration, the
Government may take action directly or through any of its members.
(3) The Government is authorized to draw any branch of State administration
directly under its control and to create special organs for this purpose.
The Armed Forces and the Police
(1) The armed forces (Hungarian National Army, Border Guard) have the
fundamental function of providing military protection for the homeland. For the
ratification of the law on the duties of the armed forces and the detailed rules
applying to them, the votes of two thirds of the MPs present are necessary.
(2) The fundamental function of the police is to safeguard public security
and defend law and order. The ratification of the law on the police and the
detailed rules connected with national security require two thirds of the votes
of the MPs present.
(1) Except for military exercises based on valid international agreements or
peace maintenance activities performed on request of the United Nations
Organization, the armed forces may cross state borders only with the prior
consent of parliament.
(2) The armed forces may be used only in times of an emergency situation
promulgated in accordance with the provisions of Constitution, in case of armed
action aimed at the overthrow of the constitutional order or at the seizure of
absolute power, furthermore in cases of violence committed with arms, or the use
of force in a manner endangering the safety of the life and property of citizens
on a mass scale, and only when the deployment of the police is not sufficient.
(3) Unless there is a valid international agreement containing other
provisions, the command of the armed forces is the exclusive province of
Parliament, of the President of the Republic, the National Defence Council, the
Government and the competent minister as laid down in the Constitution or in a
(4) A law adopted with the votes of two thirds of the MPs present may
restrict any party activity by the regular members of the armed forces and of
(1) Unless there is a valid international agreement in force to the contrary,
foreign armed forces may not pass through and may not be used or be stationed
in, the territory of the country without the prior consent of Parliament.
(2) International agreements that concern national defence must be confirmed
in the law and promulgated.
(1) The territory of the Republic of Hungary consists of administrative units
including the Capital, the counties, cities, towns and villages.
(2) The Capital is divided into districts. Districts may be formed in other
The enfranchised citizens of the villages, towns, of the capital city and its
districts, and of the counties are entitled to the right of local
self-government. Local self-government means autonomous and democratic
management of local affairs by the communities concerned and exercise of local
public authority in the interest of the population.
(1) All local authorities have the same fundamental rights (44/A). However,
the duties and responsibilities of local governments may be different.
(2) The rights and duties of local governments are determined by the law.
The Courts protect the lawful exercise of jurisdiction by local authorities.
Local governments are free to turn to the Constitutional Court for the
protection of their rights.
(1) Citizens who have the vote exercise local government through the
representative body they have elected and by local plebiscites.
(2) The members of the representative body are elected for a term of four
(1) The local representative body
a) regulates and administers matters that belong to the competence of the
local authority; its decisions may be revised only if there is a question of
b) exercises ownership rights in regard to local-authority property,
independently budgets the incomes of the local government, and may start
ventures on its own responsibility
c) to deal with its duties as laid down in the law, the local authority is
entitled to an adequate income of its own to perform its functions and also
receives State support proportionate to its scope of duties
d) authorizes, within the limits of the law, local taxes (rates), their types
e) within the limits of the law, it independently sets up its organization
and formulates its standing orders
f) may create local emblems, and found local titles, distinctions and awards
g) in public affairs of concern to the local community, it may put forward
initiatives to the organizations entitled to take decisions
h) may freely form associations with other local representative bodies, it
may create interest organizations with other local authorities, and may within
its competence cooperate with local authorities in other countries, and
affiliate itself with international organizations of local governments.
(2) A local representative body may frame decrees within its competence,
which, however, must not be in conflict with legal provisions of a higher
(1) The Mayor is the president of the local representative body. A
representative body may elect committees and set up its own office.
(2) Apart from his duties and responsibilities in local government, the Mayor
may exceptionally, on the basis of the law or legal authorization, perform
duties of state administration and authority.
(3) A law or government decree may assign state administrative functions and
authority to the Notary, and, exceptionally, to the acting director of the
office of the representative body.
The votes of two thirds of the MPs present are necessary for the acceptance
of the law on local self-government. The same proportion of votes are necessary
for the adoption of a law that limits the fundamental rights of local
(1) In the Republic of Hungary, the Supreme Court of the Republic of Hungary,
the Court of the Capital City and the county courts, and local courts administer
(2) Legislation may provide for the institution of special courts for certain
groups of cases.
The courts administer justice in councils of professional judges and lay
assessors. Legislation may authorize exceptions to this rule.
The Supreme Court of the Republic of Hungary sets guidelines based on
principles for the judicial work of every court. The directives and decisions
in questions of principle of the Supreme Court are binding on all courts of the
(1) The President of the Supreme Court is elected, after nomination by the
President of the Republic, by Parliament. The vice-presidents of the Supreme
Court are appointed by the President of the Republic on nomination by the
President of the Supreme Court. For the election of the President of the
Supreme Court, the votes of two thirds of the Members of Parliament are
(2) Professional judges are appointed by the President of the Republic in the
manner determined by the law.
(3) Judges may be removed from office only for reasons and through procedures
laid down in the law.
(1) The Courts of the Republic of Hungary protect and ensure constitutional
order, the rights and lawful interests of citizens, and punish the perpetrators
of criminal offenses.
(2) The Courts supervise the legality of the decisions of public
(3) Judges are independent and are subordinate only to the law. Judges may
not hold membership in any party and must not carry on political activities.
(4) To adopt the law on the Courts, the votes of two thirds of the MPs
present are necessary.
The Prosecutor's Office
(1) The Chief Prosecutor and the Prosecutor's Office of the Republic of
Hungary provide for the protection of the rights of the citizens and are
responsible for the consistent prosecution of every act violating or endangering
constitutional order or endangering the security and sovereignty of the country.
(2) The prosecutorial organization carries on investigations in cases
determined by the law, exercises supervision over the legality of criminal
investigations, acts for the prosecution in proceedings before courts, and
exercises supervision over the observance of legality in the administration of
(3) The Prosecutor's Office helps to ensure that all social organizations,
all state organs and citizens comply with the law. In the event of
transgression of the law, it takes action for the protection of legality in the
cases determined by the law.
(1) The Chief Prosecutor of the Republic of Hungary is elected by Parliament
on the proposal of the President of the Republic. The deputies of the Chief
Prosecutor are appointed on the proposal of the Chief Prosecutor by the
President of the Republic.
(2) The Chief Prosecutor is accountable to Parliament, and is obliged to
report on his work.
(1) Prosecutors are appointed by the Chief Prosecutor of the Republic of
(2) Prosecutors must not be affiliated to any party and may not carry on
(3) The prosecutorial organization is headed and directed by the Chief
(4) The rules on the prosecutorial organization are laid down in the law.
Fundamental Rights and Duties of Citizens
(1) In the Republic of Hungary every human being has the innate right to life
and the dignity of man, and no one may be arbitrarily deprived of these rights.
(2) No one may be subjected to torture, or to cruel, unusual, inhuman or
humiliating treatment or punishment. It is absolutely impermissible to perform
medical or scientific experiments on human beings without their consent.
(1) In the Republic of Hungary everyone has the right to liberty and personal
security, and no one may be deprived of freedom except for reasons defined in
the law and on the basis of legal proceedings.
(2) Persons suspected of the perpetration of a criminal offence and detained,
must be released or brought before a judge as soon as possible. The judge is
bound to give a hearing to the person brought before him, and must produce a
written decision adducing his reasons for setting the detainee free or keeping
him in custody.
(3) Anyone who has been victimized through illegal arrest or detainment is
entitled to compensation.
In the Republic of Hungary every human being has legal standing.
(1) In the Republic of Hungary everyone is equal before the law and has the
right to defend himself against any accusation brought against him, or, in a
civil suit, to have his rights and duties judged by an independent and impartial
court of law at a fair public trial or hearing.
(2) In the Republic of Hungary no one may be regarded as guilty until his
culpability has been established by a legally valid decision of the court.
(3) Persons subjected to criminal proceedings are entitled to the right of
defense in every phase of the procedure. Defence lawyers must not be called to
account for opinions expounded while they present the defence.
(4) No one may be pronounced guilty of, or sentenced for, any act that was
not considered a criminal offence under Hungarian law at the time it was
(5) In the Republic of Hungary everyone is entitled to legal redress or has
the right of appeal against court or administrative decisions, or any other
authority's decision, that infringe his rights or lawful interests.
(1) Whoever is staying in the territory of Hungary is entitled - except for
some cases defined in the law - to free movement and the right of choosing his
or her place of residence, including the right of leaving his domicile or the
(2) Foreigners lawfully staying in Hungary may be expelled from the country
only on the basis of a decision that is in accord with the law.
(3) The adoption of the law on the freedom of travel and settlement requires
the affirmative votes of two thirds of the MPs present.
(1) In the Republic of Hungary everyone is entitled to the protection of his
or her reputation and to privacy, including the privacy of the home, of
personal effects, particulars, papers, records and data, and to the privacy of
personal affairs and secrets.
(2) For the acceptance of the law on the protection of the security of
personal data and records (particulars), the votes of two thirds of the MPs
present are necessary.
(1) In the Republic of Hungary everyone has the right to the freedom of
thought, conscience and religion.
(2) This right includes the free choice or acceptance of religion or any
other conviction according to one's conscience, and the liberty to express, or
refuse to express, to exercise or teach one's religion and conviction through
the performance of religious acts and rites, either individually or together
with others, either publicly or in a closed circle.
(3) In the Republic of Hungary the Church functions in separation from the
(4) The ratification of the law on the freedom of conscience and of religion
requires the votes of two thirds of the MPs present.
(1) In the Republic of Hungary everyone has the right to the free declaration
of his views and opinions, and has the right of access to information of public
interest, and also the freedom to disseminate such information.
(2) The Republic of Hungary recognizes and protects the freedom of the Press.
(3) The law on the publicity of data and information and the law on the
freedom of the Press require the support of two thirds of the votes of the MPs
present for ratification.
(4) For the adoption of the law on the supervision of public radio,
television and news agency services, and on the appointment of their leaders;
the law on the licencing of commercial radio and television stations, and the
prevention of monopolies on information, the votes of two thirds of the MPs
present are necessary.
(1) The Republic of Hungary recognizes the right to peaceful assembly and
guarantees its free practice.
(2) The adoption of the law on the freedom of assembly requires the votes of
two thirds of the MPs present.
(1) In the Republic of Hungary everyone has the right, on the basis of the
freedom of association, to set up organizations for purposes not prohibited by
the law and to adhere to such organizations.
(2) For political purposes no armed organization may be established on the
basis of the freedom of association.
(3) The adoption of the law on the right of association and on the operation
and financial management of parties requires the votes of two thirds of the MPs
In the Republic of Hungary everyone has the right to submit written petitions
or complaints either alone or together with others.
(1) On terms laid down in the law, the Republic of Hungary ensures the right
of asylum for foreign citizens persecuted in their homeland and for those
displaced persons who are at their place of stay harrassed on grounds of race,
religion, nationality, language or political affiliation.
(2) A person already granted asylum must not be extradited to another state.
(3) The adoption of the law on the right of asylum requires the votes of two
thirds of the MPs present.
(1) The Republic of Hungary guarantees the equality of men and women in
regard to all civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights.
(2) In the Republic of Hungary, mothers receive special support and
protection before and after the birth of their children, in compliance with
separate provisions of the law.
(3) Special rules ensure protection for women and young people in the
performance of their jobs.
(1) In the Republic of Hungary, every child has the right to enjoy the care
and protection on the part of their families, and by the State and society, that
is necessary for satisfactory physical, mental and moral development.
(2) Parents are entitled to the right of choosing the kind of education their
children are to receive.
(3) Special provisions contain the responsibilities of the State in regard to
the position and protection of families and of youth.
(1) The national and ethnic minorities living in the Republic of Hungary
share the power of the people; they are constituent factors in the State.
(2) The Republic of Hungary grants protection to national and ethnic
monorities, it ensures the possibilities for their collective participation in
public life, and enables them to foster their own culture, use the mother
tongue, receive school instruction in the mother tongue, and freedom to use
their names as spelled and pronounced in their own language.
(3) The laws of the Republic of Hungary ensure representation for the
national and ethnic minorities living in the territory of the country.
(4) National and ethnic minorities may set up their own local and
national government organizations.
(5) The votes of two thirds of the MPs present are required to pass the
law on the rights of national and ethnic minorities.
(1) In the Republic of Hungary no one may be arbitrarily deprived of his or
her Hungarian citizenship, nor may any Hungarian citizen be expelled from the
territory of the Republic of Hungary.
(2) A Hungarian citizen may always come home from abroad.
(3) During a legitimate stay abroad every Hungarian citizen is entitled to
protection by the Republic of Hungary.
(4) The ratification of a law on citizenship requires the votes of two thirds
of the MPs present.
(1) All Hungarian citizens of age whose regular domicile is in Hungary have
the right to be elected at the elections for Parliament and for local
governments, and - if they are in the tetory of the country on election day - to
(2) The right to vote is denied to those who have been under legal
guardianship and are limited or incapacitated in their actions, to those who are
doing term under a lawful sentence or who are under compulsory institutional
care or treatment ordered in a criminal procedure.
(3) In elections of the local self-government even non-Hungarian
ncitizens who have settled in Hungary for a longer period of time have the right
to vote, according to a separate law.
(4) Every Hungarian citizen has the right to be active in public affairs and
to bear public office in accordance with his talent, training and professional
(1) The Republic of Hungary guarantees for all persons in its territory human
and civil rights without discrimination on account of race, colour, sex,
language, religion, political or other views, national or social origins,
ownership of assets, birth or on any other grounds.
(2) Any discrimination falling within para (1) agains persons is strictly
punishable by law.
(3) The Republic of Hungary promotes the realization of equality before the
law with measures aiming to eliminate inequalities of opportunity.
(1) In the Republic of Hungary everyone has the right to work, to the free
choice of employment and occupation.
(2) Everyone without any discrimination has the right to equal pay for equal
(3) Everyone who works has the right to emolument that corresponds to the
amount and quality of the work performed.
(4) Everyone has the right to rest and free time for recreation, and regular
(1) Everyone has the right to form an organization for the protection of
economic and social rights together with others, or to adhere to such an
(2) The right to strike may be exercised within the framework of the law that
(3) The votes of two thirds of the MPs present are required to adopt the law
on the right to strike.
(1) People living within the territory of the Republic of Hungary have the
right to the highest possible level of physical and mental health.
(2) The Republic of Hungary implements this right through arrangements for
labour safety, with health institutions and medical care, through ensuring the
possibility for regular physicial training, and through the protection of the
built-in a natural environment.
(1) Citizens of the Republic of Hungary have the right to social security.
In case of old age, illness, disability, being widowed or orphaned, and in case
of unemployment for no fault of their own, they are entitled to the provisions
necessary for subsistence.
(2) The Republic of Hungary upholds the right of people to being provided for
through the social security system and its institutions.
(1) The Republic of Hungary ensures for its citizens the right to culture.
(2) The Republic of Hungary ensures this right through the expansion of
culture and making arrangements for general access to it, through free and
compulsory eight-grade education, through the general accessibility of secondary
and third-level instruction, moreover through financial assistance for those in
(1) The Republic of Hungary respects and supports the freedom of science and
art, the freedom of learning and of teaching.
(2) Only qualified scholars and scientists have the right to arrive at
decisions in regard to what should be credited as a contribution to science, a
scientific result, and to assess the scientific value of research.
(1) All citizens of the Republic of Hungary have the duty to defend the
(2) Subject to their general defence obligation, citizens are expected to
undergo military service, armed or unarmed; or civil service on terms specified
in the law.
(3) For the ratification of the law on military defence obligations, the
votes of two thirds of the MPs present are required.
Every citizen of the Republic of Hungary bears the obligation to contribute
to rates and taxes in accordance to income and wealth.
In the Republic of Hungary, parents and guardians have the obligation of
seeing to the education of minor children.
Claims deriving from infringement of fundamental rights and objections to
state(administrative) decisions in regard to compliance with duties may be
brought to the Courts.
Principles Governing the Elections
(1) Members of Parliament, the members of the representative bodies of
villages, townships and of the districts of the Capital, the legally defined
number of the members of the representative body of the capital city, moreover,
the Mayor in cases defined in the law, are elected by direct secret balloting on
the basis of the universal and equal right to vote.
(2) The members of the representative bodies of counties are elected by
secret ballot by the meeting of delegates chosen by the village and city
(3) Separate laws provide for the election of the Members of Parliament, the
Mayor and the members of the local representative bodies. For the adoption of
these laws the votes of two thirds of the MPs present are necessary.
Article 72 Repealed
Article 73 Repealed
The Capital City and Emblems of The Republic of Hungary
The Capital of the Republic of Hungary is Budapest.
The National Anthem of the Republic of Hungary is the poem by Ferenc Kolcsey
entitled Hymn as set to music by Ferenc Erkel.
(1) The National Flag of the Republic of Hungary is a tricolour of red, white
and green stripes of equal width running horizontally.
(2) The Coat of Arms of the Republic of Hungary is a vertically impaled
shield coming to a point in the middle of the rounded base. Four red and four
silver horizontal stripes alternate on the dexter. A triple green crest rises
from the sinister base, its middle mound bearing a gold coronet transfixed by a
silver patriarchal cross against the red field. Atop the shield rests the Holy
Crown of St. Stephen.
(3) For the adoption of laws on the Coat of Arms, the Flag of the
Republic of Hungary and the usage of those the votes of two thirds of MPs are
(1) The basic law of the Republic of Hungary is the Constitution.
(2) The Constitution and the constitutional provisions are equally binding on
all organizations of society, all state organs and on citizens.
(1) The Constitution of the Republic of Hungary comes into force on the day
of its proclamation. The Government is to see to its implementation.
(2) The Governments bears the obligation of submitting to Parliament the
Bills necessary for the enactment of the Constitution.
roducing such code emerged both in Hungary and
abroad as part of plans to have large central data bank
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