Electoral Management Design Database




Model of electoral management



Constitution (1972, last amended in 2004)

ARTICLE 142. In order to guarantee the freedom, fairness and effectiveness of popular elections, an autonomous and independent tribunal is established, called Electoral Tribunal, which shall have legal personality, its own funds and the right to administer them. This Tribunal shall be the sole entity responsible for interpretation and application of Electoral Law and it shall direct, supervise, and control the recording of important facts, deaths, naturalizations, and all other facts and legal acts related to the civil status of persons, the issuance of personal identity cards, and the different stages of the electoral process.

The Tribunal shall have jurisdiction throughout the Republic, and shall be composed of three justices who must have the same qualifications which are required for Justices of the Supreme Court. They shall be designated, separated by intervals, for ten year terms, as follows: one by the Legislative Branch, one by the Executive Branch, and one by the Supreme Court of Justice, among candidates who are not members of the nominating authority. For each justice, one alternate shall be appointed in the same manner.

The Justices of the Electoral Tribunal and the Electoral Prosecutor (Fiscal General Electoral) are responsible before the Supreme Court for any offenses or crimes committed in the exercise of their duties; the prohibitions and prerogatives established by this Constitution for the Justices of the Supreme Court of Justice also apply to them.

ARTICLE 143. In addition to the functions conferred upon it by law, the Electoral Tribunal shall have the following functions which it shall exercise solely, with the exception of those mentioned in numerals 5 and 7:

1.To record births, marriages, deaths, naturalizations, and the other facts and legal acts related to the civil status of persons, and to include the necessary explanatory notes in the respective records;

2. To issue personal identity cards;

3. To regulate, interpret and apply the Electoral Law and to decide on disputes caused by its application;

4. To punish offenses and crimes against free and fair elections in accordance with law, granting a second instance;

5. To keep the electoral register;

6. To organize, direct and supervise the registration of voters, and to resolve disputes, applications and complaints that may arise in this respect;

7. To process the records of immigration and naturalization applications;

8. To name the members of the Electoral Boards on which the representation of the legally established political parties must be guaranteed. The law shall regulate this matter;

9. To draft its budget and to present it in a timely manner to the Executive Branch for inclusion in the draft General Budget of the State. The Electoral Tribunal shall defend, at all stages, its draft budget. The finally approved budget shall provide it with the necessary funds for the fulfillment of its functions. In the budget shall be included the operating costs of the Electoral Tribunal and of the Office of the Electoral Prosecutor, the investments and costs needed for the conduct of the election processes and other popular consultations as well as the subsidies to the political parties and the independent candidates for elected office. In the year immediately prior to the general elections and until the end of the electoral period the Tribunal Electoral shall be subject only to posterior supervision by the Office of the Comptroller General;

10.To initiate legislation on matters within its jurisdiction;

11.To consider as the sole competent body the applications and actions brought against the decisions of the lower electoral criminal tribunals and the Office of the Electoral Prosecutor.

The decisions of the Electoral Tribunal on electoral matters may only be challenged before the latter and once legal proceedings have been completed they shall be final, irrevocable and binding.

Only the application for constitutional review shall be admissible against these decisions.


Artículo 130. El Tribunal Electoral constituye la máxima autoridad electoral y ejercerá las funciones que le confiere el artículo 143 de la Constitución Política, así como las previstas en su Ley Orgánica, siempre que no se contravenga ninguna disposición de esta Ley Electoral y se respeten integralmente las garantías del debido proceso de la ley en cada una de las controversias que se susciten ante el mismo.

Electoral Management Bodies

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Name of EMB Number of EMB members Term of office EMB members selected by Chair appointed/elected by Party or expert based membership
Electoral Tribunal (Tribunal Electoral) 3 10 years Parliament; Government; Supreme Court EMB Expert
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