Romania / High Court of Cassation and Justice / 554/1/2012 Curcă Traian v the National Authority for Property Restitution

Key facts of the case:

The plaintiff demanded that the National Authority for Restitution of Property be ordered to pay him 500.000 lei constituting compensation awarded to the plaintiff by Decision no. 2354/28.05.2008 of the Central Compensation Board, for a building nationalised during the communist regime. The Craiova Court of Appeal rejected the application as premature, stating that the compensation cannot be paid since payments have so far been made, within available funds, for applications registered until March 11, 2008, while the defendant’s application had been registered in August 2008 and thus had to wait its turn. The High Court of Cassation and Justice overturned this decision and ordered the defendant to issue a payment title in favour of the plaintiff. It found that the internal rules applied by the administrative authority cannot infringe the principle of handling an application within a reasonable time, as part of the right to a fair trial and the right to a good administration.

Paragraphs referring to EU Charter: 


The fact that an administrative set of rules refers to the order in which applications were registered cannot paralyse, per se, the judicial action of a person which deems herself or himself prejudiced by the fact that the tile has not been issued, because the role of the rules is to organise the activity of the authority, not to infringe the principle of handling applications within a reasonable time, warranty of the right to a fair trial provided for by Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights and component of the right to a good administration, included in the legal order of the European Union by the Charter of Fundamental Rights.

Deciding body (original language): 
Înalta Curte de Casaţie şi Justiţie