The paper identifies the main problems of the formation of the judicial system of the Russian Empire on the principles of independence and instantsiynosti. Analyzes the experience of their decision during the eighteenth – the second half of the nineteenth century. Attempts to reform the judicial system in this period were fragmented. Court remained bureaucratic institution and the judicial system – a complex and confusing. Only judicial reform in 1864 and consistently democratic decided these issues. One of the important achievements of the reform was the separation of the judiciary from the administration. Independence of the judiciary ensured the reduction of courts; institutions appeal and appeal court decisions; special status of judges. The last was a special order for dismissal of judges and dismissal; legal strengthening of judicial authority and material resources. Instead of a complex system of different judicial institutions launched a new model of the judicial system. The judicial system reform by 1864 acquired the following form. Lowest level in the system of ordinary courts became the District Court, which considered in the first instance civil and criminal cases, incompetent magistrates. Chambers were defined as the trial (in the order they are considered special proceedings cases of public office and offenses), and appeals. On the one hand their jurisdiction included cases on complaints and protests against judgments of district courts. The Senate was transformed in the supreme Court of Cassation authorized to oversee the protection of precise and unambiguous force of law on all his court.
Keywords: judicial system, judicial independence, level arrangement of the judiciary, judicial reform in 1864