The Supreme Court has performed compilation of case-law “Reimbursement of moral injury in civil cases”. The summary includes analysis of rulings of both court of cassation instance and other instances.  Compilation comprises civil cases reviewed between 2006, when amendments to Section 1635 of the Civil Law were made, until August 2014.  

In this period, the cassation instance court had adopted more than 500 rulings in cases, in which reimbursement of moral injury was claimed for. Authors of compilation have reviewed almost all rulings, which were adopted in these cases and are available in the Court Information System. Initially, almost one hundred of significant judgements, which include conclusions regarding different aspects of reimbursement of moral injury, were selected; however, during research number of reviewed cases increased, as it became apparent that it is desirable to analyse also at least part of more than two hundred reviewed cases, in which initiation of cassation proceedings was rejected. The goal of summary is to analyse trends, problems occurred or contradictions.  

Summary provides both conclusions comprised in rulings of the Senate and other court instances, which partly are published already on the web site of the Supreme Court in section “Judicature” and conclusions made by authors of study, which are accepted at the meeting of judges of the Department of Civil Cases.  

Reimbursement of moral injury is assessed in compilation of case-law in different cases – in respect of threat to life and health; in case of violation of right to respect for private life; in cases on reimbursement as a result of unlawful or unreasoned action of investigation institution, prosecutor’s office or a court; in cases on violation of rights in labour law relations; for providing of low quality medical service and in cases of different other categories. It is pointed out in conclusions of summary that “amount of reimbursement for moral injury shall be determined in each concrete case at discretion of a court, following sense of justice and general principles of law. It must be taken into account that there is no single rate to determine amount of reimbursement. It has been determined, observing severity, nature of moral injury, circumstances and consequences of its causing, and other significant circumstances. Sum awarded or reimbursement must execute function of justice, prevention and settlement. It must not only provide relief to a person, whose rights were violated, but also to preclude blamed person from commitment of similar violations in future. Thus, reimbursement must be commensurate.”

Authors of compilation of case-law also pointed out that in comparative circumstances reimbursement must be similar. Court judgements in other cases, which establish uniform case-law, must be taken into account as criteria for determination of amount of reimbursement.  

Case-law study was performed by Dr. habil. iur. Kalvis Torgsns, Mg. iur. Aldis Lavins and Mg. iur. Andrejs Stupins, the Division of Case-law of the Supreme Court and the Department of Civil Cases of the Supreme Court. Compilation of case-law is accepted at the meeting of judges of the Department of Civil Cases of the Supreme Court on 13 January 2015.  

Compilation of case-law is available on the web site of the Supreme Court section Judicature/ Compilations of court decisions/ Civil law. See compilation of court decisions here


Information prepared by Baiba Kataja, the Press secretary of the Supreme Court

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