FEDERATED STATES OF MICRONESIA: Access to justice for children

This report is part of CRIN's access to justice for children project, looking at the status of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) in national law, the status of children involved in legal proceedings, the legal means to challenge violations of children’s rights and the practical considerations involved in challenging violations.

The Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) has ratified the CRC, and its provisions can be directly enforced in courts. Children through their representatives may bring civil action or judicial review proceedings in domestic courts to challenge violations of their rights, but only with the assistance of a representative. Class actions are also permitted. However, children face several obstacles to accessing justice in the country. FSM does not have a formal legal aid system, there are no juvenile courts or special provisions for children giving evidence in legal proceedings, and there are reports of lengthy delays in the judicial system. There are potential conflicts between FSM’s customary law and statutory and international law. FSM also does not have a national human rights institution to which children can make complaints about violations of their rights.

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