Common courts of Ukraine

The common courts of Ukraine try civil and criminal cases and cases about the administrative violations. And accordingly there are three different procedures established separately for each type of the case: the Code of Civil Procedures of Ukraine, the Code of Criminal Procedures of Ukraine and the Code about Administrative Violations in Ukraine (the last one includes material and procedural legal norms; however the material norms covering the administrative violations are also spread in numerous other laws of Ukraine).

The civil procedure is used first of all to try disputes between natural persons and claims filed by natural persons against Ukrainian corporate entities arising mainly from civil and delictual relations. Also there is a couple types of other disputes, which are not specifically covered by the other procedures and therefore tried using the civil procedure. The civil procedure is also used to try disputes related to various family relations in Ukraine. The civil procedure in Ukraine is further divided into default trial procedure and special trial procedures. Among other things, special procedures are used to:

- declare a person legally incapable, missing or dead;

- establish legally significant facts;

- initiate proceedings on escheated or ownerless property;

- order the disclosure of confidential information held by banks.

In the same way as in many other foreign jurisdictions, criminal cases deal with the most serious violations of law (e.g., violations affecting life, property, national security, etc.).

Talking about trial of cases arising from the administrative violations should be defined, that the administrative violation has nothing common with disputes arising from various administrative acts of the state authorities related to their power authorization, which are tried by Ukrainian administrative courts. For Ukraine and for a lot of other CIS countries the name was given to this judicial procedure due to the fact that in former USSR such minor offences were tied mainly not by a court, but by appropriate state officials, i.e. using their administrative powers. In fact for Ukraine and other countries of former USSR an administrative violation means a minor offence, which is similar to a crime, but less serious.

The common courts are also referred to as "civil courts" or simply "the courts" because these courts used to try disputes between natural persons, i.e. the biggest number of disputes (earlier also including competence of today administrative courts), because the disputes are between Ukrainian citizens, which number reaches about 48'000'000 persons.

The local common courts have territorial jurisdiction over the smallest administrative units (i.e. towns or districts of a city or a region). Common courts of appeal have territorial jurisdiction over a region of Ukraine; Kiev city and Sevastopol city, due to the importance of these cities and the large number of citizens there, have their own common courts of appeal. Decisions issued by the common courts of appeal can be appealed to the Supreme Court of Ukraine, which is accordingly the cassational authority in such issues.

The above information is provided herein in educational and informative purposes only. It is provided that you have to get appropriate legal advice as regarding the legal and other issues of your interest in Ukraine in order to have the exact, extensive and up-to-date legal and other related information.

Do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or issues of legal nature, our Law Firm is working for you and our experienced legal specialists are always ready to help providing the client with appropriate legal consultations, legal reports and summaries, reasonable legal advices and all the other required legal support, assistance, coverage and protection.

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