Court creates legal Web site to promote rights, education

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 18 August, 2002, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 18 August, 2002, 12:00am

The nation's highest court has created China's first legal news and information Web site.

The People's Supreme Court and its newspaper, People's Court News, announced on Friday it had created a Web site with two addresses - and - which will feature the latest court decisions and all related information about major court cases, the China News Service reported. But the Web site was not up and running yesterday.

It will feature court news, legal guides and explanations, independently posted legal news bulletins and free legal advice services. It will also include a list of court officials at every level, new legal developments and technology services. The site is made up of about 140 pages, including a database of court decisions, laws and regulations, and access will be free. An English version will be available soon.

Officials expect the Web site will receive about 120,000 visits every day.

Liu Jiachen, vice-president of the People's Supreme Court, said he hoped the posting of court decisions and legal information would help users better understand the enormous changes and reforms the legal system had undergone in the past few decades.

The Web site is the latest move by the nation's legal system to increase transparency and public education. It comes in response to the public's increased use of the courts to settle private disputes and the nation's entrance into the World Trade Organisation.

The People's Supreme Court reported in March that China's courts handled almost six million cases last year, of which about 12 per cent were criminal cases, 85.6 per cent civil cases and about two per cent administrative cases.

The highest growth was seen in cases involving labour and contract rights and divorces. The courts heard nearly 1.3 million divorce cases last year.