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On dismissing the instituted legal proceedings

Case No. 14/94-15/94

 THE CONSTITUTIONAL COURT OF
THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA

 D E C I S I O N

 On the dismissal of the commenced legal proceedings

 27 June 1994, Vilnius

The Constitutional Court of the Republic of Lithuania, composed from the Justices of the Constitutional Court: Algirdas Gailiūnas, Kęstutis Lapinskas, Zigmas Levickis, Vladas Pavilonis, Pranas Vytautas Rasimavičius, Stasys Stačiokas, Teodora Staugaitienė, Stasys Šedbaras, and Juozas Žilys

The court reporter—Rolanda Stimbirytė

The Constitutional Court of the Republic of Lithuania, in its procedural sitting, has examined the issue pertaining to the dismissal of the initiated legal proceedings in case No. 14/94-15/94.

The Constitutional Court

has established:

The petitioners—the Panel of Civil Cases of the Supreme Court and the 2nd Vilnius District Court—request an investigation into whether Item 1 of Paragraph 1 of Article 26 of the Code of Civil Procedure of the Republic of Lithuania is in compliance with the first paragraph of Article 109 of the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania.

The Panel of Civil Cases of the Supreme Court, while investigating the civil case under cassation procedure pursuant to the suit of the stock-company “Transferas” lodged against the Panevėžys city board, faced the issue of the jurisdiction of the case. The Panel of Civil Cases of the Supreme Court has stated that, under Item 1 of Paragraph 1 of Article 26 of the Code of Civil Procedure, this case as well as other cases pertaining to the disputes, the subjects of which are state, public, co-operative enterprises, establishments and organisations, are not within the jurisdiction of courts. The material, gathered for the suspended case, can prove that the issue of said dispute being under the jurisdiction of State Arbitration was raised. Meanwhile, in accordance with the first paragraph of Article 109 of the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania, the courts shall have the exclusive right to administer justice. Besides, Article 124 of the Constitution establishes that acts adopted by municipalities in violation of the rights of citizens and organisations, may be appealed against in court. Due to the above-mentioned reasons, the investigation of the case was suspended and it was decided to address the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Lithuania.

The 2nd Vilnius District Court, while investigating the civil case pursuant to the suit of the plaintiff—the joint-stock company “TELE-3”—brought against the defendant—the Radio and TV Centre of Lithuania—also faced the jurisdictional issue of the case. The representatives of the defendant have specified that, in conformity with Article 26 of the Code of Civil Procedure of the Republic of Lithuania, the case is not within the jurisdiction of the court, and said dispute among parties should be settled by the State Arbitration. Therefore, the 2nd Vilnius District Court suspended said civil case and passed the ruling to apply to the Constitutional Court.

In the first paragraph of Article 109 of the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania it is determined that the courts shall have the exclusive right to administer justice. While realising this constitutional provision, the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania on 12 April 1994 adopted the Provisional Law on the Economic Court. In the first paragraph of Article 1 of this Law it was set forth that: “A specialised court of the Republic of Lithuania, called the Economic Court of the Republic of Lithuania, is established instead of State Arbitration of the Republic of Lithuania, to ensure the court investigation of economic disputes arising from commercial activity”. In the second paragraph of this Article it is determined that “The Economic Court shall start its activity on the next day after the oath taken by the appointed judges to the Republic of Lithuania”.

On 25 May 1994, the President of the Republic of Lithuania, by decree No. 300 appointed judges of the Economic Court. On 26 May 1994, these judges took an oath for the Republic of Lithuania. Taking into consideration the fact that the State Arbitration of the Republic of Lithuania was liquidated by said acts, establishing the Economic Court instead, the case under investigation is actually left without the subject matter of the dispute. The Constitutional Court holds that this is a ground for the dismissal of the initiated legal proceedings.

Conforming to the fourth paragraph of Article 69 of the Law on the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Lithuania, the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Lithuania adopts the following

decision:

To dismiss the commenced legal proceedings of case No. 14/94-15/94.

Justices of the Constitutional Court:

Algirdas Gailiūnas                           Kęstutis Lapinskas                           Zigmas Levickis

Vladas Pavilonis                              Pranas Vytautas Rasimavičius         Stasys Stačiokas

Teodora Staugaitienė                       Stasys Šedbaras                               Juozas Žilys