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- Legal System
Cyprus’ legal system is based primarily on English Common Law. However, there are some exceptions such as family and administrative law, which are based on the Greek legal system. The judiciary is presided over by the Supreme Court, which in 1964 succeeded the Supreme Constitutional Court and the High Court. The Supreme Court acts as the final court of appeal and rules on constitutional issues. Under this there are the district courts, assize courts, family courts, rent control courts, the military court and the industrial dispute court.
The legal profession in Cyprus is fused, meaning that those who pass the bar and become lawyers can act as both barristers and solicitors. Those wishing to practice as a lawyer in Cyprus must obtain a law degree from a recognised institution, complete one year’s training with a lawyer who has at least five years of experience in the profession, and pass the Cyprus Bar Exams. All lawyers are required to be members of the Cypriot Bar Association, which is governed by a code of professional conduct, and represents over 2000 members (2012). Additionally there are local bar associations in each of the six major towns. Foreign lawyers from the EU may practice on a temporary basis in Cyprus, but are required to use the title of their home jurisdiction and must be registered with the bar council if they wish to practice permanently in the country. Foreign lawyers from outside the EU may practice, with special permission from the bar council, providing they present the necessary certification. Prominent law firms operating in the country include Andreas Neocleous & Co, Chrysses Demetriades & Co and Antis Triantafyllides & Son. Domestic firms are largely dependent on connections with international firms. A number of these also possess offices outside the jurisdiction – Michael Kyprianou and Co. LLC, Pamboridis LLC and A.G. Paphitis and Co. LLC Law Office, all of which have offices in Greece, while Pamboridis LLC and Antonis Paschalides and Co have offices in London. Andreas Neocleous and Co LLC has a presence in Russia, Ukraine, the Czech Republic and Belgium.
Information from the World Economic Forum, The Global Competitiveness Report 2012-2013
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