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Code of Canon Law
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Can. 1732 Whatever is laid down in the canons of this section concerning decrees, is also to be applied to all singular administrative acts given in the external forum outside a judicial trial, except for those given by the Roman Pontiff himself or by an Ecumenical Council.
Can. 1733 §1 When a person believes that he or she has been injured by a decree, it is greatly to be desired that contention between that person and the author of the decree be avoided, and that care be taken to reach an equitable solution by mutual consultation, possibly using the assistance of serious-minded persons to mediate and study the matter. In this way, the controversy may by some suitable method be avoided or brought to an end.
§2 The Episcopal Conference can prescribe that in each diocese there be established a permanent office or council which would have the duty, in accordance with the norms laid down by the Conference, of seeking and suggesting equitable solutions. Even if the Conference has not demanded this, the Bishop may establish such an office or council.
§3 The office or council mentioned in §2 is to be diligent in its work principally when the revocation of a decree is sought in accordance with Can. 1734 and the time-limit for recourse has not elapsed. If recourse is proposed against a decree, the Superior who would have to decide the recourse is to encourage both the person having recourse and the author of the decree to seek this type of solution, whenever the prospect of a satisfactory outcome is discerned.
Can. 1734 §1 Before having recourse, the person must seek in writing from its author the revocation or amendment of the decree. Once this petition has been lodged, it is by that very fact understood that the suspension of the execution of the decree is also being sought.
Can. 1735 If, within thirty days from the time the petition mentioned in Can. 1734 reaches the author of the decree, the latter communicates a new decree by which either the earlier decree is amended or it is determined that the petition is to be rejected, the period within which to have recourse begins from the notification of the new decree. If, however, the author of the decree makes no decision within thirty days, the time-limit begins to run from the thirtieth day.
§2 In other cases, unless within ten days of receiving the petition mentioned in Can. 1734 the author of the decree has decreed its suspension, an interim suspension can be sought from the author's hierarchical Superior. This Superior can decree the suspension only for serious reasons and must always take care that the salvation of souls suffers no harm.
§3 If the execution of the decree is suspended in accordance with §2 and recourse is subsequently proposed, the person who must decide the recourse is to determine, in accordance with Can. 1737 §3, whether the suspension is to be confirmed or revoked.
Can. 1737 §1 A person who contends that he or she has been injured by a decree, can for any just motive have recourse to the hierarchical Superior of the one who issued the decree. The recourse can be proposed before the author of the decree, who must immediately forward it to the competent hierarchical Superior.
§2 The recourse is to be proposed within the peremptory time-limit of fifteen canonical days. In the cases mentioned in Can. 1734 §3, the timelimit begins to run from the day the decree was notified; in other cases, it runs in accordance with Can. 1735.
§3 Even in those cases in which recourse does not by law suspend the execution of the decree, or in which the suspension is decreed in accordance with Can. 1736 §2, the Superior can for a serious reason order that the execution be suspended, but is to take care that the salvation of souls suffers no harm.
Can. 1738 The person having recourse always has the right to the services of an advocate or procurator, but is to avoid futile delays. Indeed, an advocate is to be appointed ex officio if the person does not have one and the Superior considers it necessary. The Superior, however, can always order that the one having recourse appear in person to answer questions.
Can. 1739 In so far as the case demands, it is lawful for the Superior who must decide the recourse, not only to confirm the decree or declare that it is invalid, but also to rescind or revoke it or, if it seems to the Superior to be more expedient, to amend it, to substitute for it, or to obrogate it.
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