(Application no. 28140/05)
21 October 2008
This judgment will become final in the circumstances set out in Article 44 § 2 of the Convention. It may be subject to editorial revision.
In the case of Łakomiak v. Poland,
The European Court of Human Rights (Fourth Section), sitting as a Chamber composed of:
Nicolas Bratza, President,
Nebojša Vučinić, judges,
and Fatoş Aracı, Deputy Section Registrar,
Having deliberated in private on 30 September 2008,
Delivers the following judgment, which was adopted on that date:
I. THE CIRCUMSTANCES OF THE CASE
A. Civil proceedings for division of an inheritance and dissolution of co-ownership
The enforcement proceedings are pending.
B. Proceedings under the 2004 Act
II. RELEVANT DOMESTIC LAW AND PRACTICE
I. ALLEGED VIOLATION OF ARTICLE 6 § 1 OF THE CONVENTION ON ACCOUNT OF THE UNFAIRNESS OF THE PROCEEDINGS
“In the determination of his civil rights and obligations ..., everyone is entitled to a fair ... hearing ... by [a] ... tribunal...”
It follows that this part of the application is manifestly ill-founded and must be rejected in accordance with Article 35 §§ 3 and 4 of the Convention.
II. ALLEGED VIOLATION OF ARTICLE 6 § 1 OF THE CONVENTION ON ACCOUNT OF THE UNREASONABLE LENGTH OF THE PROCEEDINGS
“In the determination of his civil rights and obligations ..., everyone is entitled to a ... hearing within a reasonable time by [a] ... tribunal...”
21. In the present case the Regional Court acknowledged a breach of the applicant's right to a hearing within a reasonable time and awarded her the equivalent of EUR 750 in respect of the length of the proceedings (see paragraph 12 above). The just satisfaction awarded by the Regional Court amounts to approximately 12 per cent of what the Court would be likely to have awarded the applicant at that time in accordance with its practice, taking into account the particular circumstances of the proceedings.
The Court thus concludes that the redress provided to the applicant at domestic level, considered on the basis of the facts of which she complains before the Court, was insufficient (see Czajka v. Poland, no. 15067/02, § 56, 13 February 2007). Having regard to the criteria for determining victim status in respect of length of proceedings complaints as set out in the judgment of Scordino v. Italy (no.1) ([GC], no. 36813/97, §§ 193-215, ECHR-2006-...), the Court concludes that the complaint cannot be rejected as being incompatible ratione personae with the Convention.
There has accordingly been a breach of Article 6 § 1.
III. APPLICATION OF ARTICLE 41 OF THE CONVENTION
“If the Court finds that there has been a violation of the Convention or the Protocols thereto, and if the internal law of the High Contracting Party concerned allows only partial reparation to be made, the Court shall, if necessary, afford just satisfaction to the injured party.”
B. Costs and expenses
C. Default interest
FOR THESE REASONS, THE COURT UNANIMOUSLY
(a) that the respondent State is to pay the applicant, within three months from the date on which the judgment becomes final in accordance with Article 44 § 2 of the Convention, EUR 5,800 (five thousand eight hundred euros) in respect of non-pecuniary damage and EUR 100 (one hundred euros) for costs and expenses, to be converted into Polish zlotys at the rate applicable at the date of settlement, plus any tax that may be chargeable;
(b) that from the expiry of the above-mentioned three months until settlement simple interest shall be payable on the above amounts at a rate equal to the marginal lending rate of the European Central Bank during the default period plus three percentage points;
Done in English, and notified in writing on 21 October 2008, pursuant to Rule 77 §§ 2 and 3 of the Rules of Court.
Fatoş Aracı Nicolas Bratza
Deputy Registrar President