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European Court of Human Rights (Fourth Section) – Judgement 19 December 2017 – Mandić and Popović v. Bosnia and Herzegovina – Enforcement of final domestic judgement after five years considered as belated under Article 6

On 19 December 2017 the ECtHR (Fourth Section) issued a decision in the case of

Mandic and Popovic v. Bosnia and Herzegovina on applications nos. 73944/13 and 78987/13.

Facts of the case

By two judgments of the Banja Luka Court of First Instance of 17 October 2008 and 29 May 2009, which became final on 12 February 2009 and 30 October 2009 respectively, the Republika Srpska (an Entity of Bosnia and Herzegovina) was ordered to pay a sum in respect of pecuniary damage together with default interest to the applicant in application no. 73944/13, Ms Orijana Mandić, and a sum in respect of pecuniary damage together with default interest jointly to the applicants in application no. 78987/13, Mr Drago and Predrag Popović. The Banja Luka Court of First Instance issued writs of execution on 9 June 2009 and 31 March 2010. On 30 July 2014 the final judgment in respect of Ms Orijana Mandić was fully enforced in cash. On 14 December 2015 and 16 December 2015 the final judgment in respect of Mr Drago and Predrag Popović was also fully enforced in cash.

Judgement of the ECtHR – Article 6: delayed enforcement of the final domestic judgments
A. Relevant rules

The general principles relating to the non-enforcement or delayed enforcement of final of domestic judgments were set out in Jeličić v. Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The Court has held that a delay in the enforcement of a judgment may be justified in particular circumstances, but the delay may not be such as to impair the essence of the right protected under Article 6 § 1. Notably, the Court has held that it is not open to authorities to cite lack of funds as an excuse for not honouring a judgment debt.

B. Facts of the case and conclusion

In the case at stake, having regard to the case-law on the subject (in particular: Momić and Others v. Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Milinković v. Bosnia and Herzegovina), and to the fact that the final judgments under consideration in the present cases have not been enforced, respectively, for more than five years and one month and for more than five years and eight months, the Court stated that there has accordingly been a breach of Article 6 § 1 of the Convention and Article 1 of Protocol No. 1 to the Convention.

Full text decision

Updated: January 9, 2018 — 12:33 pm

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