Introductory Note


In this section, the Constitutional Court of Colombia offers an overview of the main judicial decisions adopted by the Constitutional Court Plenary and its review instances in a wide range of topics such as: constitutional control of the final peace agreement decrees, freedom of religion, human dignity, right to water, free development of personality, freedom of expression, marriage and adoption for same-sex couples, recognition of ethnic rights, right to work for women in condition of pregnancy, among many others.


Role of the Constitutional Court


According to Article 241 of the Constitution, the Constitutional Court has the duty to safeguard the integrity and supremacy of the Colombian Constitution. To fulfill its duties, the Court has the following functions: · Decide on the petitions of unconstitutionality against measures amending the Constitution. · Prior to the public vote, decide on the constitutionality of the call for a referendum or a constituent assembly to amend the Constitution. · Decide on the constitutionality of referendums about laws, popular consultations and plebiscites of a national scope. · Decide on unconstitutionality petitions brought by citizens against the laws, both for their substantive content as well as for procedural errors in their formation. · Decide on unconstitutionality petitions brought by citizens against decrees with force of law issued by the government on the basis of Article 150, paragraph 10, and Article 341 of the Constitution for their substantive content as well as for procedural errors in their formation. · Decide on the exceptions provided for in Article 137 of the Constitution. · Definitively decide on the constitutionality of legislative decrees issued by government on the basis of Articles 212, 213, and 215 of the Constitution. · Definitively decide on the constitutionality of bills opposed by government as unconstitutional and of statutory bills, both for their substantive content as well as for procedural errors in their formation. · Revise the judicial decisions related to the protection of constitutional rights. · Definitively decide on the constitutionality of international treaties and the laws approving them. · Settle disputes between the different jurisdictions. · Draft its own rules of procedure.


Composition of the Constitutional Court


The Court is composed of 9 Justices, including the Chief Justice. They are elected by the Senate of the Republic for 8 years from ternary lists submitted by the President of the Republic (3 lists), the Supreme Court of Justice (3 lists), and the Council of State (3 lists), according to Article 44 of Law 270/1996.



Justices

Gloria Stella Ortíz Delgado
Alberto Rojas Ríos
Carlos Libardo Bernal Pulido
Diana Fajardo Rivera
Luis Guillermo Guerrero Pérez
Alejandro Linares Cantillo
Antonio José Lizarazo Ocampo
Cristina Pardo Schlesinger
José Fernando Reyes Cuartas

Glossary

The following list of terms is useful to understand the documents issued by the Constitutional Court.

Concrete review– “Tutela”
Concrete constitutionality review performed by the Constitutional Court by means of rulings issued by the Court’s Review Chambers integrated by three justices. These rulings which settle concrete cases regarding fundamental rights.

Res judicata
Principle of law that dictates that a matter that has been previously decided by a judge cannot be decided in a subsequent ruling not related to the previous proceeding.

Conservation of law principle
It is a principle according to which the constitutional tribunals shall prefer a decision that allows preserving, by interpretation, a regulation issued by the Congress, rather than eliminating it from the system.

Declaration of constitutionality under a determinate interpretation
When the Court declares the constitutionality of a regulation while determining the interpretation that allows it to be constitutional.






Main Decisions


The Colombian Constitutional Court begins the publication of the english version of an abstract of its most important decisions


T-468/18
Exercise worthy of motherhood in people with disabilities

C-140/18
The Court reiterates the right of parents when their children are born.

T-452/18.
Principle of continuity on the provision of health services to retired members of the police

T-448 / 2018
The reduction of the sentence or pre-agreements in sexual crimes against children is not applicable

T -449/18
Religious freedom does not exclude the guarantee of the fundamental right of petition

T-443 / 2018
The rights of children as a limit to the autonomy of indigenous peoples.

C-117 / 2018
The 5% tax on sanitary towels is unconstitutional

T-434 / 2018
School transportation service and exceptional access of children to education programs for the elderly

C-101/2018
The inability for tax debts is constitutional

SU-095/2018
The "consulta popular" can not be used to prohibit extractive activities in a specific municipality or district.

SU-096/2018
The Court reiterates the ruling C-355/ 2006. The case of abortion.

T-407A-2018
Right to informed consent in cases of contracts in pornographic videos

T-365/18
Condemn for homicide by the indigenous jurisdiction requests his case to be submitted to the special jurisdiction for peace

T-364/2018
Constitutional Court protects fundamental rights to due process and privacy of two young people expelled from a school.

T-366 /2018
Protection for a girl victim of an antipersonnel mine.

T-363/ 2018
Religious freedom of people in jail

T-384 /2018
The superior interest of the child and the joint custody of both parents.

C-080 / 2018
Revision of the Statutory Law Project number 08 of 2017Senate - 016 of 2017 Chamber, "Statutory of the Administration of Justice in the Special Jurisdiction for Peace "

T-311/18
Duties of the authorities in cases of intrafamily violence

T-305/2018
The type of employment relationship is not an obstacle to labor protection

SU-075/ 2018
The job stability of pregnant women. Change of jurisprudence

T-242/2018
Family unity in the context of population density measures

T-240/ 2018
Schools may discipline students who affect the right to privacy when they use social networks

T-243 /2018
Protection to domestic work

T.244/2018
Protection of political speech

C-063/2018
Being single or not having children are disproportionate demands for professional soldiers

T-227/2018
UARIV. Legal reasons when denying to include people in the registry.

T-210 /2018
Health services for migrants

T-129/ 18
Principles of proportionality and reasonability in suspension of intimate visitis in prisions .

T-126/2018
Gender approach in language used in judicial decisions in case of victim of sexual violence.

T-117/2018
Rigths to privacy , honour, ones`s good name and image in the social nerworks

C-017/18
Commission for the Clarification of Truth, Coexistence and Non-Repetition

T-067/2018
The risks of new information technologies and communications in schools. The case of the"blue whale" game.

T-023 /2018
Right to nationality and to registration of birth for a minor born outside the country.

C-001/ 2018
Unconstitutional the "servant" expression of the civil code

T-735/17
State may become secod aggressor of a woman when there is no diligence in attending the denounces for gender based violence

DECISION C-730/17
Development programs with territorial approach

T-695/2017
Freedom of opinion can not be used to defame

T-675/2017
Change of sex on identity card. The case of intersex children

SU-649/2017
Quimbaya treasure must return to Colombia

T-590/2017
Obligation to solve cases involving a gender perspective

: T-574/17
Scope of the rigth to privacy against the dissemination of virtual conversation of chat created in the labor enviroment.

T-572/2017
It is forbidden racial discrimination in an employment relationship

T-553/ 2017
Shared retirement pension

T-332/2017 Y T544/2017
Two new cases of euthanasia

T-543/2017
Prohibition of preventive censorship to the information that warns about risks of consumption of sugary drinks

T-524/ 2017
Duty of neutrality in religious matters of the official educational institutions.

T- 499 A/ 2017
Reinforced labor protection of women pregnant or in the lactation period and adopting mothers

C-644/17
Payment for environmental services and incentives to the conservation

C-408//17.
Speakers of members of the Farc in the Congress

T-365/2017
The case of vaccines against human papilloma

T-311/17.
Right to love

T-304 / 2017
Right to freedom of locomotion of people in disability situation

T-306/2017
Corporal punishment of children is prohibited by the Constitution

T-277/2017
Reinforced labor stability for workers bearing HIV/ AIDS.

T-276/ 2017
Internet and telephones in prisons

C-253/17
Modifications in the regime of royalties

T-250/ 2017
Migratory policy of the colombian state

T-207/2017
Who knowing the absence of the biological link through genetic tests has allowed time to pass without making use of legal mechanisms ratifies his legal, filial and social paternity.

T-302/2017
Food and clean water for the Wayuu people

C-077/2017
Relative Legislative Omission. Zones of Rural, Economic and Social Development

T-027/2017
Violence, against women / Violence, gender-based

C-003/2017
Right to education, / Scholarship, access.

T-725/2016
Right to update information on the internet

C-699/ 2016
Fast track procedure

T-564/16
Rights of the victims of the armed conflict. Request to make a public act of recognition of responsibility in the Massacre of Santo Domingo.

C-659 /2016
The limits on the activities that women can perform during voluntary military service are unconstitutional.

T-622/2016
The Atrato River as a "subject of rigths"

T-594 /2016
Protection of the rights of sex workers

T-560/16.
Free development of personality

T-573/ 2016
Contraceptive procedures can not be performed on people with disabilities without their consent

T-523/2016
Right to inclusive education of children in a disability situation

C-379/ 2016
The plebiscite as an endorsement mechanism to guarantee the ending of the armed conflict

T- 349/16
Manuals of student coexistence can not impose aesthetic patterns

DECISION T-312/16
Privation of liberty to indigenous people by detention in prison facilities

SU-214/2016
Marriage of same sex couples from  notaries and judges

SU-214/16
Celebration of civil marriage between same couples in Colombia

T-074 /2016
Foster children

T- 012 /2016
Economic violence in a couple constitutes discrimination.

C-683/15
Adoption by same couples

T-478 / 2015
Prohibition of all forms of discrimination and harassment in schools. Respect for people with diverse sexual orientation. Review of the Coexistence Manuals. The case of Sergio Urrego.

T-274/2015
Right to reproductive health . In vitro fertilization treatment.

T-141/2015
Phrases of hatred against homosexual people are contrary to the Constitution

C-071/15
Adoption by same sex couples when the minor is the biological child of one member of a same sex couple

T-057/2015
Fundamental right to try.

T-043/2015
The case of the homeless

C-035/15
Right to the information and comunications of blind and low people

T-024 / 2015
Right to digna housing

T-967/2014
Jealousy is a reason for divorce

T-970/2014
Right to die with dignity. Euthanasia. The Colombian Constitutional Court Reiterates the considerations made in the decision C-239 of 1997.

T-850/2014
Rigths to the deaf and deafblind population

SU617/2014
Right of homosexual couples to adopt a child when he is the son of one of the partners

C-577/14
Participation in politics of the demobilized

T-455/14
Conscientius objectors of the military service

C-368/2014
Increase of the criminal sanction for domestic violence offences

C-283/2014
Animal welfare

T-192/14.
The positive dimension of the right to equality

C-177/2014
Forensic interview to children and adolescents victims of sexual offences, must comply with due process and respect for the superior interest of children

T-153/ 2014
FUNDAMENTAL RIGHT TO THE HEALTH OF PEOPLE SUFFERING MENTAL DISORDERS by ADDICTIVE USE OF PSYCHOACTIVE, BIDDING AND ILLICIT SUBSTANCES-

C-131/2014
The prohibition of practicing surgical methods of contraception in minors

T-634/2013
Protection of self - image

T-552/ 2013
Right to transgender persons to access health services

T-372/2013
Right to conjugal visits for LGBTI people.

SU-254/13
Rights of the victims of the forced displacement

SU-198/ 2013
Due process in criminal judment for high dignitaries.

T-077/2013
Water rights in prisons

SU-070/2013
Rules in the matter of protection reinforced to motherhood

T-416/2013
Case in which the Board of Management of a building refuses to build a wheelchair ramp for an individual with a disability.

T-1077/ 2012
precautionary principle

T-1078-2012
Prohibition of slavery and mistreatment in cases of domestic service.

T-918/2012
Right to sexual identity

T-691/2012
Discrimination based on race

T-646/2012
.The terms of maternity leave are extended in cases of premature babies and multiple births.

T-407/2012
Cameras in the classrooms

C-288/2012
Fiscal sustainability principle

T-248/2012
Discrimination based on sexual orientation

T-905/2011
Case of bullying

C-577/2011
The homosexuals have the right to form a family.

C-439/2011
The keeping of domestic animals as expression of fundamental right.

C-283/2011
Protection to the facto marital unions and the rights for same-sex couple

T-267/2011
The “Pavas” case.

C-216/2011
The Constitutional Court declared unconstitutional the economic emergency.

T-129/11.
Autonomy of the indigenous communities in ther own territories. Protection of their integrity and the enviroment

A-288/2010
International cooperation and technical assistance in defense and security Agreement between Colombia and US

T-629/2010
Protection to the sex workers (prostitution)

T-616/2010
Right to Water

C-141/10
THIRD PRESIDENTIAL PERIOD (REELECTION)

T-078/2010
Testimony provided by sexually abused minors and the pro infans principle.

C-488/09.
Prohibition and sanction of genocide

T-388/09.
Sexual and reproductive rigths

T-291/2009
Rights of informal recyclers

C-029/2009
Rights to the same-sex couples

T-1258/2008
Protection of handicap people/Protection against discriminatory action against targeted minorities

C-772/2008
The walls of infamy

T-760/2008
. Fundamental right to health

T-391/2007
Protection of fundamental rights/ Freedom of speech

C-075/2007
The Court recognized that same sex couples had the rigth to form a common law marriage. The equality rigths of same sex couples.

T-893A of 2006.
The isolation in prisons is contrary to the human dignity of prisoners

C-370/2006
Justice and Peace Law/ Amnesty/Human Rights/Victim´s Rights

C-355/2006
Abortion/ Right to life, Right to health, Rigth to self-determination, Right to family/

C-076/2006
Discrete and hidden minority groups

T-1090/2005
Discrimination on the basis of race

C-1040/2005
Constitutional Revision of re-election act

T-778/05
Right to cultural identity on the exercise of political representation

C-590/2005
New exceptional events in which is possible to lodge a complaint against sentences.

T-025/2004
RIghts of victims of internal displacement

T-772/03
Social State of Law. Public space

T-595/02
Accessibility to the public transportation system

C-760/2001
Legislative Procedure

C-371/2000
Right to equality of women in the conformation of decisional institutions of the State

T-030/00
RIGHTS OF MINORS FROM INDIGENOUS COMMUNITIES

SU-337/99
Right to sexual identity and free development of the hermaphrodites.

SU-360/1999
Public space / right to work/ Rigts of the sellers in the street

SU-510/98
. Restriction of the religious freedom of members of indigenous communitie

C-191/1998
Meaning and scope of Article 101 of the Constitution; constitutional block and treaties on boundaries; international law and domestic law.

T-523/97
Corporal punishment in the indigenous tradition.

C-239/1997
The Euthanasia / Human Dignity/

SU-039/1997
Constitutional protection of the social identity, cultural and economic life of the native community.

C-045/96
Limitations to the right to information and liberty of press

C-225/95
Additional protocol to the Geneva Conventions regarding the protection of victims of non-international armed conflicts.

T-484/94.
televised political debates

T-425/94
Censorhip to the media, a freedom of speech dilema

C-221/1994
Personal use of drugs

C-113/93
Capability of the Court to determine the effects of its decisions

C-027/93
Decision C-027/93. Concordat

C-004/1992
State of emergency; scope of the Constitutional Court's jurisdiction on social emergency’s motivation.

T-426/92
Right to a vital minimum