by Lazar JUGOVIĆ
The European Court of Human Rights (Second Section), sitting on 29 March 2011 as a Committee composed of:
András Sajó, judges,
and Françoise Elens-Passos, Deputy Section Registrar,
Having regard to the above application lodged on 18 July 2008,
Having regard to a settlement reached by the parties,
Having deliberated, decides as follows:
The application was lodged by Mr Lazar Jugović, a Serbian national who was born in 1946 and lives in Šabac. The Serbian Government (“the Government”) were represented by their Agent, Mr S. Carić.
The facts of the case, as submitted by the applicant, may be summarised as follows.
A. Civil proceedings in which the applicant acted as the claimant’s legal representative
On 22 April 1996 the applicant, acting as a legal representative of L.J., filed a claim with the Šabac Municipal Court against D.J. concerning the validity of a life-long assistance contract.
On 11 June 1996, L.J. died. On 20 June 1996 the applicant informed the Šabac Municipal Court about his client’s death and that he would continue the proceedings on behalf of potential successors pursuant to the Civil Procedure Act.
On 27 February 1997 the Šabac Municipal Court ruled in favour of L.J. That decision was upheld by the Šabac District Court on 29 September 1997.
On 15 September 1998 the Supreme Court quashed the judgments of 27 February 1997 and 29 September 1997 and remitted the case for a retrial.
On 15 February 2000 the Šabac Municipal Court ruled against L.J. and ordered the applicant to pay the costs of the proceedings in the amount of 7,105 dinars (YUM - approximately 300 German marks (DEM) at the time)1.
This decision was upheld by the Šabac District Court on 17 April 2000 and by the Supreme Court on 20 September 2000.
B. Civil proceedings against the State
On 17 December 2002 the applicant claimed compensation from the State on the ground that the judgment of 15 February 2000 had unlawfully ordered him to pay the costs of the civil proceedings described above.
On 15 December 2003 the First Municipal Court ruled in favour of the applicant. On 27 January 2005 the Belgrade District Court quashed that judgment and remitted the case for a retrial.
On 29 March 2005 the First Municipal Court ruled in favour of the applicant.
On 28 November 2007 the Belgrade District Court amended the judgment of 29 March 2005 and ruled against the applicant on the ground that he had caused the expenses for D.J. by failing to inform the courts about the death of L.J.
The applicant was served with this judgment on 15 April 2008
The applicant complained under Article 6 of the Convention that he did not have a fair hearing in the determination of his civil rights and obligations, in view of the arbitrary findings made in his case by the domestic courts.
The Court notes that, after the Government had been informed of the application on 9 November 2010 (Rule 54 § 2 (b) of the Rules of Court), they offered to the applicant to settle the case by acknowledging a violation of his right to a fair trial and by offering redress in the amount of 2,200 euros to cover any damage as well as costs and expenses, which would be converted into local currency at the rate applicable on the date of payment. The payment was effected on 20 January 2011. On 2 February 2011 the Government informed the Court that the applicant had accepted their settlement proposal. On 15 February 2011 the applicant informed the Court that he wished to withdraw his application introduced before the Court.
The Court reiterates that Article 37 of the Convention in the relevant part reads as follows:
“1. The Court may at any stage of the proceedings decide to strike an application out of its list of cases where the circumstances lead to the conclusion that
(a) the applicant does not intend to pursue his application; or
(b) the matter has been resolved;
However, the Court shall continue the examination of the application if respect for human rights as defined in the Convention and the Protocols thereto so requires.”
The Court takes note that following the settlement reached between the parties the matter has been resolved and that the applicant does not wish to pursue his application (Article 37 § 1 (a) and (b) of the Convention). It is satisfied that the settlement is based on respect for human rights as defined in the Convention and its Protocols and finds no reasons to justify a continued examination of the application (Article 37 § 1 in fine of the Convention).
In view of the above, it is appropriate to strike the case out of the list.
For these reasons, the Court unanimously
Decides to strike the application out of its list of cases.
Françoise Elens-Passos Ireneu Cabral
Deputy Registrar President
1 According to the exchange rates fixed by the then National Bank of Yugoslavia