Plus jeden deň, 10.12.2012 EN

Advokátka Jana Martinková - Attorney-at-law (lawyer), der Rechtsanwalt - Advocatus Martinková s. r. o., Odborníčka o miliónovej pokute pre Slovensko, Plus jeden deň, Foto:Peter Frolo
Plus jeden deň, 10.12.2012


Expert on the fine on Slovakia: Chances to veto are minimal!

December 10th, 2012, 09:30


The Slovak Republic must pay a massive fine to the Slovak-Dutch company Achmea, the owner of the health insurance company Union, for a lost dispute concerning the ban of profits.


The prime minister claims nothing is lost, but experts say chances of reversing the verdict are minimal.


Will Union receive €22 million?


As compensation for the resulting damages, Slovakia must pay 22 million euro in damages and 3 million euro in legal costs. A further 13 million euro is supposedly owed to the lawyers that represented Slovakia in the dispute, incurring a total of 38 million Euro in losses.


The tribunal declared that Slovakia has breached an investment agreement with the Netherlands when health insurance profits were banned during Fico's first term.


"The ruling is not legally binding", Prime Minister Robert Fico claims, "We can see that you are riled up about this, but we are not", adding that the lawsuit asked for a sum that was larger by several magnitudes.


Read more:

The lost arbitration with insurance companies cannot be reversed, says MP Lipsic


According to the ministry of finance, Slovakia will be able to contest the decision and the conflict will reach the European Court of Justice. MP David Lipsic, on the other hand, claims the verdict cannot be undone and that the fine will be enforced.


Expert opinion


Arbitration expert Jana Martinková believes the decision is legally binding and chances for any reversal are minimal:


"Slovakia had a good chance at winning this conflict, but they made a significant mistake in the first legal proceedings by not contesting the tribunal's jurisdiction soon enough."


According to attorney Jana Martinková, not all available arguments were used when the severity of the fine was first expressed.


Slovakia had previously won a similar legal conflict with the insurance company Dovera.


The law firm Skadden, representing the state at that time, should have offered their services in this case as well. Unfortunately, Slovakia was ultimately represented by a different organization.

Foto:Peter Frolo