Closest family member in Polish penal codes


  • Cezary Wiśniewski


Polish criminal law, kinship, domestic partnership, concubinage, household


In Polish penal law the term “closest family member” has existed for decades. Since 1932, however, the circle of people encapsulated by that term has changed si- gnificantly. This article tracks those changes from the Polish Penal code of 1932 through to the revised Penal Code of 1969 and on up to 1997. In the Code of 1932, “closest family member” was defined as people connected to an individual by way of marriage, cognition or affinity. In the Code of 1969, this was expanded to incorporate adopted family members and their spouses, as well as a person with whom the individual lived in cohabitation. From the outset, this latter category generated issues relating to the status of adjudication of a cohabitating partner. Contemporarily, primary discussion revolves around homosexual couples. From the analysis of judicial decision and do- ctrine, it is clear that views in this respect remain divided. However, there is evidence that articulates greater appreciation that homosexual couples can be acknowledged as immediate family. Notwithstanding, doctrine and judicial decision is not unitary.




How to Cite

Closest family member in Polish penal codes. (2014). Miscellanea Historico-Iuridica, 13(2), 241-252.

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