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Norway and Article 8
A Triangle of Partnership and Solidarity

"Everyone has the right to an effective remedy by the competent national tribunals for acts violating the fundamental rights granted him by constitution or by law."

Article 8 implies that everyone has a basic right to have access to the to court of law if they have an honest case concerning themselves. Everyone has also access to court of law if they have been treaded unfairly.
In Norway today it is very expensive to present a case to court of law, but everyone is entitled to have an attorney/defender no matter how rich or poor you are. In some cases the state will pay the fees of the lawyers.
In our country we have courts of law for criminal and civil cases.

In connection with punishable acts the law says that you have the right to get help from a defender at every stage of the case, from the beginning of the investigation to the case is closed. (see: Penal Code section 94 to 98)
The police should inform about this at the police-interrogation.

The state will normally pay your attorney/defender in these cases:

In Norway not everyone will get the help they ought to receive. Some people come from other countries or cultures, and they will have some trouble to get an attorney. This happens because they do not know how the Norwegian law system works. Some of them maybe have some trouble understanding Norwegian, and they do not know how to obtain an attorney or a defender.

The law also says that you may usually choose whichever attorney you would like to defend you. There must be special reasons if you do not get your wishes fulfilled.
If you choose a defender/attorney outside the local district, you have to pay the attorney's expenses.
If you do not choose a special attorney, one of the ordinary attorneys in the local district will defend you. You can change attorney, if that does not affect or delay the case. The defender will give you advice and appear on your behalf. He will make sure that all that is in your advantage is brought forward.
(see: Penal Code section 107a to 107d)

In civil or private cases people have to pay the lawyers themselves. There are also other cases where the defendant has to pay the lawyer's fees:

Judicially considered article 8 works very well in Norway, but in practice it does not always work as well as it should.

Written by Carina Barreth Beiermann

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