Systemic problem with interpreting the law is resolved with state enforcement agency

Tax issues: Inspections by state tax and fiscal agencies Kyiv

Subject of complaint: Department of State Enforcement Service under the Ministry of Justice (SES) 
Complaint in brief: On June 6, 2018, a European satellite communication operator turned to the BOC because the SES was refusing to initiate mandatory enforcement proceedings against the company’s debtor.
Over 2011-2014, the Complainant provided satellite communications services to UkrKosmos, the state-owned space enterprise. However, it turned out later that the state operator did not have enough funds to pay for the services. 
In 2014, the International Court of Arbitration ruled that the debt of over US $3 million was to be recovered from UkrKosmos. For three years, the ruling was appealed in various courts in Ukraine until it finally came into force in March 2017. 
The Complainant appealed to the SES to initiate enforcement against UkrKosmos. However, state enforcers repeatedly refused to do so, offering an unprecedented reason: the writ itself was not in compliance with the law because the first name, patronymic and surname of the judge who signed it were not indicated, only surname and initials. The state enforcer referred to Point 1 of Art. 4 of the Law “On Enforcement Proceedings,” which provides that “the writ shall include the name and date of issue of the document, the name of the agency, and the first name, patronymic, surname and title of the official who issued it.”
Actions taken: The BOC investigator thoroughly studied the case materials According to the Council, the writ was valid and issued by an authorized court. Judging the SES refusal insufficiently justified, the investigator met twice with the SES and expressed the Council’s position. 
Result achieved: On July 23, 2018, the Complainant informed the Council that the SES had finally initiated enforcement proceedings. The case began to move forward at last.
In addition, the Council’s investigator brought up the issue of different interpretations of provisions of the law and the resulting baseless decisions by state enforcers before the Ministry of Justice. The BOC had seen similar cases in the past, so it saw the problem as systemic. After several rounds of negotiations, MinJust issued a letter urging SES departments to equally apply the provisions of the law: the first name, patronymic, surname and the title are required only for documents issued by the named official. For documents issued by courts and other government agencies, this requirement does not apply. And so, a systemic problem was resolved.

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