Vilnius County Court is one of five county courts operating in Lithuania.
This Court hears criminal and civil cases as a court of first instance and reviews on appeal cases which have been dealt with by district courts.
Vilnius County Court hears at first instance criminal cases which it is entitled to hearing by Article 225 of the Code of Criminal Procedure of the Republic of Lithuania. These are criminal cases in which persons are accused of committing serious and very serious crimes as well as cases in which at the time a criminal act was committed accused persons held the position of the President of the Republic of Lithuania, members of the Parliament or Government, judges of the Constitutional Court, judges or prosecutors.
Vilnius County Court hears at first instance civil cases which it is entitled to hearing by Article 27 of the Code of Civil Procedure of the Republic of Lithuania. These are civil cases in which the value of a claim is higher than one hundred thousand litas, except cases of legal family relationships concerning division of property, cases concerning copyright and civil legal relationships of public tender, cases concerning bankruptcy and restructuring, cases upon an application of a bank temporary administrator concerning reduction of the bank capital, cases in which one of the parties is a foreign state, cases upon claims concerning forced sale of shares, cases concerning investigation of activities of a legal entity and other cases which according to laws have to be heard by a county court as a court of first instance.
Article 28 of the Code of Civil Procedure of the Republic of Lithuania specifies cases which can be heard only by Vilnius County Court. These are cases concerning disputes defined in the Patent Law of the Republic of Lithuania, concerning disputes defined in the Law on Trade Marks of the Republic of Lithuania, concerning adoption upon applications of foreign citizens and other cases which, in accordance with existing laws, have to be heard by Vilnius County Court as a court of first instance.
The county court hears cases which have been dealt with at first instance by district courts which operate in the territory of the county court when their decisions and judgments are appealed against. There are 10 district courts in the territory of Vilnius County Court: 1st District Court of Vilnius City, 2nd District Court of Vilnius City, 3rd District Court of Vilnius City, 4th District Court of Vilnius City, District Court of Vilnius Region, District Court of Šalčininkai Region, District Court of Širvintos Region, District Court of Švenčionys Region, District Court of Trakai Region and District Court of Ukmergė Region.
Vilnius County Court consists of the Criminal Division and Civil Division. According to the data of October 2014, there are 56 judges, 116 civil servants and 75 employees working under an employment contract in Vilnius County Court. There are 23 judges in the Criminal Division and 33 judges in the Civil Division. There are 24 judicial assistants in the Criminal Division and 20 court secretaries, whereas in the Civil Division there are 34 judicial assistants and 23 court secretaries.
In the system of ordinary courts operating in Lithuania, Vilnius County Court is a higher authority than district courts and decisions it makes are reviewed on appeal or cassation by courts of higher authority than this court, i.e. by the Court of Appeal of Lithuania and the Supreme Court of Lithuania.
The county court not only hears criminal and civil cases but also decides upon the imposition and extension of remand measures-detentions; the county court supervises administrative activities of district courts which operate in its territory; and it performs some other functions attributed to it by the Law on Courts and other normative acts.
The registered office of Vilnius County Court is in the building located in Vilnius, Gedimino avenue 40/1, which was built for courts of justice in times of Tsarist Russia and in Soviet years was used by KGB of the Soviet Union. At the moment, the Court of Appeal of Lithuania is also located in this building.