Sofiya Law Firm successfully defended interests of land lessee before Supreme Court
An analysis of procedural conduct of parties to a dispute sometimes allows for taking a different look at evidence in the case, resulting in quite an opposite decision.
Sofiya Law Firm has proved that, to the satisfaction of the Supreme Court, the court of appeal failed to comply with the provisions of procedural law. The law firm’s client has been granted a judgment setting aside a decision invalidating the land lease contract.
A person, who entered the land lease contract with a farm, subsequently filed a claim submitting that they never consented to the execution of the contract, and that their signature on the contract was forged.
During the trial, a handwriting expert assumed that the signature could have been affixed by someone other than the plaintiff. However, the first-level court failed to meaningfully address the matter. The court of appeal commissioned a handwriting analysis too, but held the transaction challenged to be invalid as the defendant failed to submit the original contract to the experts.
The farm engaged Sofiya Law Firm to prepare the cassation appeal after the court of appeal handed over its decision.
‘In similar cases, an expert opinion, around which all efforts of the parties are made, is of crucial importance,’ points out Sofiya Law Firm associated partner Ms Viktoriia Varienikova, who presented the defendant’s case before the Supreme Court. ‘We therefore put special focus on the demonstration, to the satisfaction of the panel of judges, of good-faith conduct of our client, who provided all the materials necessary for the carrying out of the handwriting analysis as requested by the court (in this case, the deed was dated differently, which was disregarded by the court). On the other hand, the plaintiff itself failed to provide comparative materials of sufficient quantity and quality, making it impossible to carry out the handwriting analysis.’
In reliance on these two factors, the court of cassation concluded that the court of appeal misapplied the provisions of procedural law (in particular, Article 84 of the Code of Civil Procedure) and set aside the decision.
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