Legislative Assembly of Costa Rica

Legislative Assembly

Asamblea Legislativa de la Republica de Costa Rica
Coat of arms or logo
Eduardo Newton Cruickshank Smith ( PRN)
Vice president
Jorge Luis Fonseca Fonseca ( PLN)
María Vita Monge Granados ( PUSC)
Seats 57
Asamblea Legislativa 2020-2021.svg
Political groups
Government (36)
  •   PLN (17)
  •   PAC (10)
  •   PRN (7)
  •   Independent (1)
  •   PRSC (1)

Opposition (21)

Proportional Representation with seats distributed according to the provinces' population
Last election
February 4, 2018
Next election
February 6, 2022
Meeting place
Asamblea legislativa de Costa Rica .jpg
San Jose, Costa Rica

The Legislative Assembly (Spanish: Asamblea Legislativa) forms the unicameral legislative branch of the Costa Rican government. The national congress building is located in the capital city, San José, specifically in El Carmen District in San José Canton.

The Legislative Assembly is composed of 57 deputies (diputados), who are elected by direct, universal, popular vote on a closed party list proportional representation basis, by province, for four-year terms. A 1949 constitutional amendment prevents deputies from serving for two successive terms, though a deputy may run for an Assembly seat again after sitting out a term. Currently a proposal to switch to a Mixed-member proportional representation based on the German system is under discussion .[1]


Seat allocation
Province Number of seats Population
 San José 19 1,404,242
 Alajuela 11 885,571
 Cartago 7 490,303
 Heredia 6 433,677
 Puntarenas 5 410,929
 Limón 5 386,862
 Guanacaste 4 354,154


Following the 2018 legislative election, the President of the Legislative Assembly was elected in the person of Carolina Herrera Hidalgo, a Citizens' Action Party's member with the support of most of the plenary except for the then unified National Restoration Party's group. The Directory's Secretary went to the National Liberation Party's deputy Luis Fernando Chacon and the Vice Presidency went to Social Christian deputy Inés Solís.

Parties in Legislative Assembly, 2018-2022

Political Parties in, 2018-2022
Composición Asamblea Legislativa 2018-2022.svg
Party Name (English) Party Name (Spanish) Abbrev. Seats Percentage of Assembly Party Flag
National Liberation Party Partido Liberación Nacional PLN 17 29.82%
Bandera de Partido Liberación Nacional.svg
Citizens' Action Party Partido Acción Ciudadana PAC 10 17.54%
Pac banner.svg
Social Christian Unity Party Partido Unidad Social Cristiana PUSC 9 15.79%
Bandera del Partido Unidad Social Cristiana.svg
National Restoration Party Partido Restauración Nacional PREN 7 12.28%
New Republic Bloc (formerly PREN) Bloque Nueva República NR 6 12.28%
National Integration Party Partido Integración Nacional PIN 2 3.51%
Bandera PIN Costa Rica.png
Social Christian Republican Party Partido Republicano Social Cristiano PRSC 1 1.51%
Broad Front Frente Amplio FA 1 1.75%
New Generation Party (formerly PIN) Partido Nueva Generación PNG 1 1.75%
Independent Politician Diputado Independiente Ind 3 7.02%
Independiente (Costa Rica).png


The Assembly meets in the Edificio Central ("Central Building") located in the city centre of San José. Work began on this building in 1937, with the plan of having it serve as the new presidential palace. Since much of the building materials were imported from Germany and Czechoslovakia, however, the onset of the Second World War put a halt to the project. Work did not recommence until 1957, but by 1958 the legislature was installed and operating in its new premises.


The foundations of the Legislative Assembly date back to the establishment of various courts and congresses in New Spain.[2] The modern assembly was created in the aftermath of the Costa Rican Civil War that deposed Teodoro Picado Michalski in 1948. José Figueres Ferrer headed a ruling junta that oversaw the election of a Constituent Assembly. Between 1948 and 1949, this Constituent Assembly created the Constitution of Costa Rica which lays forth the rules governing the assembly today.[3]

During each four-year legislative session, various political parties have occupied majority, minority, and coalition caucuses in the assembly.

Central American Parliament

Costa Rica is the only Spanish-speaking Central American country not to return deputies to the supranational Central American Parliament.

See also


  1. ^ Carmona, Fiorella (29 March 2019). "Congreso se acerca al cambio en sistema de elección de diputados". Revista Pulso. Retrieved 28 March 2019.
  2. ^ Clotilde Obregón Quesada Clotilde (2007). Las Constituciones de Costa Rica. Tomo I. San José, Costa Rica: Editorial de la Universidad de Costa Rica. ISBN 978-9968-936-91-0.
  3. ^ Dieter Nohlen (2005-04-14). Elections in the Americas A Data Handbook Volume 1: North America, Central America, and the Caribbean. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-928357-6.

External links

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