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Republic of Kazakhstan[1] [print]

Last edited: September 2005

 

Summary and Analysis

 

Kazakhstan ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child on June 8, 1994 without reservation. The norms of international treaties are directly applicable and are enforced by the organs of power, including the courts.[2] Private individuals and legal entities may directly invoke the provisions of international law in settling disputes between them and State bodies, institutions and organizations.

 

Since the Convention was ratified by Kazakhstan, it is granted the priority of a norm of international law. Thus, where a contradiction is observed between a treaty to which Kazakhstan is a party and domestic legislation, the rules laid down by the ratified international treaty are applied. The direct application of such international treaties, which enjoy precedence over domestic laws, does not signify that they cancel the provisions of existing laws. Where rights set out in the Convention are violated, the traditional means for their protection provided for in domestic legislation are applied.[3]

 

The Marriage and Family Act contains special chapters on “Establishing the parentage of children” and “Rights of the child,” and lays down the right of a child to live and be raised in a family, the right of a child to protection, to express his or her opinion, to protect his or her property rights, to restore of maintenance, to protect the interests of the child in the event of improper treatment, including the removal of the child where there is a direct threat to his or her life or health, and also to protect the rights and interests of children who are left without parental care.[4]  The legal guardian of a child has the right to determine independently the manner in which the child is to be raised, taking into account the views of the child and the recommendations of the guardianship authorities.[5]

 

Children have the right to express their opinions on any matter affecting their interests within the family, and also the right to be heard in judicial or administrative proceedings, from the age of 10, except in cases where this would run counter to their own interests.[6] The minimum age of consent to a change in personal status, including change of surname, family relationships, adoption and guardianship, is 10 years.[7]

 

Kazakhstan had chosen 10 as the age at which children were allowed to express their opinions, on the basis of advice from prominent teachers and psychologists. However, the Government did not exclude the possibility of lowering that age, in the light of further research.[8]

 

A child whose rights and lawful interests have been violated has the right to seek the protection of such rights and interests on his or her own initiative before the guardianship authorities and, on reaching the age of 14, the courts.[9] It seems that most children are not informed about this right.[10]

 

Parental rights may be restricted (the child is removed from his or her parents without depriving them of their parental rights) if leaving the child with the parents is dangerous because of circumstances outside the parents' control, or on grounds related to their behaviour.  If the parents do not modify their behaviour, the guardianship authorities must, once six months have passed after the adoption of the court ruling restricting their parental rights, apply to the court for them to be deprived of those rights. This period may be shortened in the interests of the child.  During this period, social services works with the parents whose parental rights have been restricted with the aim of restoring a normal situation in the family and creating appropriate conditions for the return of the child. This work promotes the reconstitution of the family.  In any court proceedings dealing with the separation of a child from his or her parents, all interested parties are given an opportunity to participate and express their views.[11]

 

Deprivation of parental rights is carried out by the courts on the basis of a declaration by one of the parents or persons in loco parentis, the procurator, or a body or institution whose duty it is to protect the rights of minors.  Cases involving the deprivation of parental rights are heard in the presence of the procurator and representatives of the guardianship authorities.[12]

 

The placement of children left without parental care is carried out by the guardianship authorities. No other private individuals or legal entities are permitted to engage in this work.[13]

 

Sources of Law (In Order of Authority)

 

Original Text

 

International Law

 

БАЛА ҚҰҚЫҚТАРЫ ТУРАЛЫ КОНВЕНЦИЯ[14]

 

12-бап

 

1. Қатысушы мемлекеттер өз ой-пікірін жеткізуге қабілетті балаға оған қатысты барлық мәселелер бойынша осы ой- пікірлерді еркін білдіру құқығын қамтамасыз етеді, бұл ретте

баланың жасына және өсіп-жетілуіне сәйкес баланың ой- пікіріне тиісті түрде назар аударылады.

2. Осы мақсатпен, атап айтқанда, балаға қатысты кез келген сот немесе әкімшілік іс қарау барысында не тікелей өзі не болмаса өкілі немесе тиісті орган арқылы ұлттық заңнаманың

процессуалдық нормаларымен көзделген тәртіпте оны тыңдау

мүмкіндігі беріледі.

 

Statutes

 

Неке жЎне отбасы туралы[15]

 

Статья 54. Право ребенка выражать свое мнение


Ребенок вправе выражать свое мнение при решении в семье любого вопроса, затрагивающего его интересы, а также быть заслушанным в ходе любого судебного или административного разбирательства. Учет мнения ребенка, достигшего возраста десяти лет, обязателен, за исключением случаев, когда это противоречит его интересам. В случаях, предусмотренных настоящим Законом (статьи 56, 70, 84, 86, 88, 97, 98, 122), органы опеки и попечительства или суд могут принять решения только с согласия ребенка, достигшего возраста десяти лет.

 

Статья 59. Право ребенка на защиту

 

1. Ребенок имеет право на защиту своих прав и законных интересов.

Защита прав и законных интересов ребенка осуществляется родителями (лицами, их заменяющими), а в случаях, предусмотренных настоящим Законом, органом опеки и попечительства, прокурором и судом.

Несовершеннолетний, признанный в соответствии с законом полностью дееспособным до достижения совершеннолетия, имеет право самостоятельно осуществлять свои права и обязанности, в том числе право на защиту.

2. Ребенок имеет право на защиту от злоупотреблений со стороны родителей (лиц, их заменяющих).

При нарушении прав и законных интересов ребенка, в том числе при невыполнении или при ненадлежащем выполнении родителями (одним из них или лицами, их заменяющими) обязанностей по содержанию, воспитанию, образованию ребенка либо при злоупотреблении родительскими (опекунскими, попечительскими) правами, ребенок вправе самостоятельно обращаться за защитой своих прав в орган опеки и попечительства, а по достижении возраста четырнадцати лет - в суд.

3. Должностные лица организаций и иные граждане, которым стало известно об угрозе жизни или здоровью ребенка, о нарушении его прав и законных интересов, обязаны сообщить об этом в орган опеки и попечительства по месту фактического нахождения ребенка. При получении таких сведений орган опеки и попечительства обязан принять необходимые меры по защите прав и законных интересов ребенка.

 

Статья 63. Права и обязанности родителей по защите прав и интересов детей


1. Родители являются законными представителями своих детей и выступают в защиту их прав и интересов в отношениях с любыми физическими и юридическими лицами, в том числе в судах, без специальных полномочий.

2. Родители не вправе представлять интересы своих детей, если органом опеки и попечительства установлено, что между интересами родителей и детей имеются противоречия. В случае разногласий между родителями и детьми орган опеки и попечительства обязан назначить представителя для защиты прав и интересов детей.

Статья 68. Порядок лишения родительских прав

 

1. Лишение родительских прав производится в судебном порядке.

Дела о лишении родительских прав рассматриваются по заявлениям одного из родителей (лиц, их заменяющих), органов или организаций, на которые возложены обязанности по охране прав несовершеннолетних детей (органов опеки и попечительства, комиссий по делам несовершеннолетних, учреждений для детей-сирот и детей, оставшихся без попечения родителей, и других), а также по иску прокурора.

2. Дела о лишении родительских прав рассматриваются с участием прокурора и органа опеки и попечительства.

О правах ребенка в Республике Казахстан[16]

Статья 43. Законные представители ребенка

1. Законные представители ребенка осуществляют представительство детей и защиту их прав и охраняемых законом интересов в отношениях с любыми лицами во всех государственных органах и организациях, в том числе в судах, без специального полномочия на основании свидетельства о рождении (или усыновлении) ребенка, паспорта родителей, удостоверения личности опекуна.

2. Права и охраняемые законом интересы несовершеннолетних в возрасте от четырнадцати до восемнадцати лет защищаются их законными представителями, за исключением случаев, когда законодательством Республики Казахстан предусмотрено право несовершеннолетнего самостоятельно вступать в гражданские, брачно-семейные, трудовые и иные правоотношения и защищать свои права и интересы.
3. Представительство и защита интересов детей, находящихся в воспитательных, лечебных организациях, организациях социальной защиты населения или других организациях, осуществляются этими организациями в соответствии с законодательством Республики Казахстан.

4. Представительство и защита прав и охраняемых законом интересов ребенка, оставшегося без попечения родителей, временно, до устройства ребенка в семью или организацию, осуществляющую функции по защите прав детей, возлагаются на орган опеки и попечительства.

 

Статья 44. Государственные органы и защита прав ребенка

Защита прав и охраняемых законом интересов детей осуществляется государственными органами в соответствии с их полномочиями.

 

The Decree of the Government of Kazakhstan of 9-09-1999, # 136 On the Bodies of Guardianship and Trusteeship of the Republic of Kazakhstan (“Ob Organah Opeki I Popechitelstva Respubliki Kazakhstan”)

 

6. Органами опеки и попечительства являются  местные  исполнительные органы.

18. Органы  опеки  и  попечительства  имеют  право  в  установленном законодательством порядке:

…16)  возбуждать  дело  о  лишении  родителей  или  одного  из    них родительских прав;

19.  Органы  опеки  и  попечительства  обязаны  в  установленном законодательством порядке:

…4) участвовать в суде при рассмотрении дел, связанных с лишением или ограничением родительских прав, восстановлением  в  родительских  правах, отменой  или  признанием  недействительным  усыновления  (удочерения), признанием недействительным брака, заключенного с  несовершеннолетним,  а также других дел в соответствии с Законом Республики Казахстан "О браке и семье";

 

Translation

 

International law

 

Convention on the Rights of the Child[17]

Article 12

1. States Parties shall assure to the child who is capable of forming his or her own views the right to express those views freely in all matters affecting the child, the views of the child being given due weight in accordance with the age and maturity of the child.

2. For this purpose, the child shall in particular be provided the opportunity to be heard in any judicial and administrative proceedings affecting the child, either directly, or through a representative or an appropriate body, in a manner consistent with the procedural rules of national law.

Statutes

 

The Law on Marriage and the Family of Kazakhstan adopted on 12-17-1998 (# 321-1)[18]

 

Section 54. The right of the child to express his opinion

 

The child has the right to express his opinion during resolution in the family of any matter that affects his interests, and also has the right to be heard in the course of any judicial or administrative proceedings. The opinion of the child over the age of ten must be taken into account, with the exception of cases in which this would contradict his interests. In cases stipulated by other provisions of this Code (sections 56, 70, 84, 86, 88, 97, 98, 122), the Bodies of Guardianship and Trusteeship or the court may render a decision only with the consent of the child over the age of ten.[19]

 

Section 59. The right of the child to protection

 

1. The child has the right to protection of his rights and legal interests. The protection of the child's rights and legal interests is carried out by the parents of the child (or persons substituting for them), and in cases stipulated by this Code, by the Bodies of Guardianship and Trusteeship, public prosecutors and courts.

A minor recognized in accordance with the law as completely capable before reaching legal age has the right to personally (independently) exercise his rights and duties, including the right to protection.

2. The child has the right to protection from parental abuse (or from the abuse by persons substituting for the child's parents).

Whenever the rights and interests of the child are violated, including non-fulfillment or improper fulfillment of parental responsibilities, (by the parent or parents or persons substituting for them) for upkeep, upbringing, and education, and the misuse of parental rights, the child has the right to apply for protection to the Body of Guardianship and Trusteeship or, after the child has reached the age of 14, to courts.

3. Responsible persons, organizations, or other civilians who receive knowledge of a threat to the life or health of a child, of a violation of his rights and legal interests, are obliged to report this to the Body of Guardianship and Trusteeship located in the child's factual location. Upon receiving such information, the Body of Guardianship and Trusteeship is obliged to take the necessary measures for the protection of the rights and legal interests of the child.

 

Section 63. The rights and responsibilities of parents to protect the rights and interests of their children.

 

1. Parents are (function as) the legal representatives of their children and speak out in defense of their rights and interests in relations with any physical or judicial persons, including in the courts, without special permission (authority, power of attorney, warrant).

2. Parents do not have the right to represent their children's interests when the Body of Guardianship and Trusteeship has established a conflict between the interests of the parents and those of their children. In case of a dispute (disagreement) between the parents and the children, the Body of Guardianship and Trusteeship is obliged to appoint a representative for the defense of children's rights and interests.

 

Section 68. The procedure for terminating parental rights

 

1. The termination of parental rights is executed in judicial order. Cases involving the termination of parental rights are investigated after a suit brought by one of the parents (or persons substituting for them), agencies or organizations charged with the protection of the rights of minor children (the Bodies of Guardianship and Trusteeship, Committee on the Affairs of Minors, establishments for orphans and children remaining without the care of their parents, and others), and also on a suit brought by the state prosecutor.

2. Cases involving termination of parental rights are investigated with the participation of the state prosecutor and the Body of Guardianship and Trusteeship.

 

Federal law on the Rights of the Child in the Republic of Kazakhstan adopted on 8-08-2002, # 345.[20]

 

Section 43. Legal representatives of the child

 

1. The legal representatives of the child effect the representation of children and the protection of their rights and legally guarded (protected) interests in relation to any persons in all government bodies and organizations, including in courts, without special permission (authority, warrant), on the basis of presentation of the child's birth certificate or certificate of adoption, the parents' passports, the identity card of the guardian.

2. The rights and legally guarded (protected) interests of minor children of fourteen to eighteen years of age are protected by their legal representatives, with the exception of cases in which the legislature of the Republic of Kazakhstan specifies the rights of an autonomous minor to speak out in civil, marriage-family, labor, and other legal relations and to protect his rights and interests.

3. The representation and protection of the interests of children in disciplinary and medical organizations, organizations of social welfare, or other organizations are carried out by these organizations in accordance with the legislation of the Republic of Kazakhstan.

4. The representation and protection of the rights and legally guarded (protected) interests of a child remaining without the care of his parents, temporarily, before the placement of the child in a family or facility providing services in the protection of children's rights, is assigned to the Body of Guardianship and Trusteeship.

 

Section 44. State agencies and the protection of children's rights

 

The protection of the rights and legally guarded (protected) interests of children is carried out by state agencies according to their powers (plenary powers, authority).

 

The Decree of the Government of Kazakhstan of 9-09-1999, # 136 On the Bodies of Guardianship and Trusteeship of the Republic of Kazakhstan (“Ob Organah Opeki I Popechitelstva Respubliki Kazakhstan”)

 

Article 6.

 

The Bodies of Guardianship and Trusteeship are local executive agencies.

 

Article 18.(16).

 

Bodies of Guardianship and Trusteeship have the right, according to the established legal order:

(16) To initiate an action (proceeding) regarding the termination of the parental rights of the parent or parents.

 

Article 19.(4).

 

The bodies of guardianship and trusteeship must, according to the established legal order:

(4) participate in court during proceedings related to the termination or limitation of parental rights, the restoration of parental rights, the annulment or recognition of invalid adoptions the recognition of an invalid marriage with a minor, and also  other proceedings in accordance with the Law of the Republic of Kazakhstan “On Marriage and Family.”

 

Local Contact Information

 

“Mezhdunarodnoe byuro Kazahstana po pravam tcheloveka I verxovenstvu zakonov” (”International bureau of Kazakhstan on human rights and rule of law”)

 

Kazakhstan, 480002 Almaty

35 Gogolya st., suite 51

Phone: 7-3272 639 461

E-mail: omaz@omaz.samal.kz

Contact person: Roza Akylbekova

 

Additional Resources and Links

www.supcourt.kz – Supreme Court of Kazakhstan

www.akorda.kz - President of Kazakhstan

www.government.kz – Government of Kazakhstan

http://www.kazakhembus.com/index.html - Embassy of Kazakhstan to the U.S



Endnotes

[1] This page is also available as a .pdf Document, and Word Document.

[2] The Constitution of Kazakhstan, article 4, available at http://www.president.kz/page.php?page_id=134&lang=2 ; also at http://www.parlam.kz/Constitution.asp?ln=en.

[3] The initial report to the committee on the rights of the child, CRC/C/41/Add.13, ¶20, available here, and also as .pdf Document, and also as Word Document.

[4] Id., at ¶17.

[5] Id., at ¶154.

[6] The Marriage and Family Act, article 54.

[7] Id.

[8] Summary record of the 886th meeting, CRC/C/SR.886, ¶368.

[9] The Marriage and Family Act, article 59.

[10] The Alternative Report of Non-Governmental Organizations of Kazakhstan, available at http://www.crin.org/docs/resources/treaties/crc.33/Kazakhstan_ngo_report.doc, page 49.

[11] Initial report, supra note 2, at ¶166.

[12] Id., at ¶165.

[13] Id., at ¶188.

[14] Convention on the Rights of the Child, available at http://www.unicef.org/magic/media/documents/CRC_kazakh_language_version.pdf.

[16] Federal Law on the Rights of the Child, available at http://www.cis-legal-reform.org/document.asp?id=5429, and also here, and also as .pdf Document, and also as Word Document.

[17] The Convention on the Rights of the Child, G.A. Res. 44/125, U.N. GAOR, 44th Session, Supp. No. 49, U.N. Doc. A/44/736 (1989), available at http://www.ohchr.org/english/law/crc.htm.

[18] Unofficial translation by translators provided by the Jerome N. Frank Legal Services Organization.

[19] The cited provisions deal with changes to the child's name, with re-institution of previously terminated parental rights, and with adoption of the child over the age of 10 - in all these cases the consent of the child must be obtained.

[20] Unofficial translation by translators provided by the Jerome N. Frank Legal Services Organization.

 

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