Hospodárske noviny, 13.12.2012 EN

Attorney at Law Jana Martinkova, Foto: Peter Frolo
Economic News, 13.12.2012

Hospodárske noviny, HN online.sk

Attorney and expert on the difficulties of banning profits Jana

Martinková in an interview for HN:

Achmea, which owns the health insurance company Union, may seize property of the Slovak Republic

Slovak state representatives claim the judgment of the arbitration court is not legally binding. What is your opinion?

First I need to state a crucial fact, namely that as far as I know, the health insurance arbitration is not accessible to the public. Therefore I can currently only speculate on its result.

However, if the verdict of the arbitration tribunal is ordinary for such cases and was presented to both sides of the dispute, then I believe the judgment is legally binding and enforceable.

The public can polemize, but the respective parties of the conflict must know the judgment with certainty, because its legal validity and enforceability is formulated expressis verbis.

Slovakia plans to contest the tribunal to decide on this issue. In your opinion, do we have a chance to succeed?

You are probably thinking of challenging the jurisdiction of the arbitration panel by filing a motion to revoke or suspend the decision.

The final verdict is rather difficult to predict, and even though I hope otherwise, I doubt that Slovakia will succeed.

If we succeed and veto the tribunal's verdict, can we avoid paying the fine?

If the defense of the Slovak Republic is successful in its entirety, it may be possible to obtain an annulment of the verdict on grounds of procedural errors.

Can state property be seized if the government refuses to pay?

In my opinion, Achmea could request to enforce the judgment in Slovakia and any country in which Slovakia owns assets.

Slovakia can contest enforcement, at the very least by requesting a suspension until the German courts can determine the jurisdiction of the arbitration tribunal.

Maria Huňková 13.12. 2012