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*PIL Case Law

Published on July 5th, 2017 | by Olga Papadopoulou

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CJEU C-249/16, Reg. 1215/2012, Art.7(1)- Concepts of ‘matters relating to a contract’ and of a ‘contract for the provision of services’

C-249/16,

Saale Kareda V. Stefan Benkö,

JUDGMENT OF THE COURT (Third Chamber), 15 June 2017 (*)

(Reference for a preliminary ruling — Jurisdiction in civil and commercial matters — Regulation (EU) No 1215/2012 — Article 7(1) — Concepts of ‘matters relating to a contract’ and of a ‘contract for the provision of services’ — Recourse claim between jointly and severally liable debtors under a credit agreement — Determination of the place of performance of the credit agreement)

In those circumstances, the Oberster Gerichtshof (Supreme Court) decided to stay the proceedings and to refer the following questions to the Court for a preliminary ruling:

‘(1)      Must Article 7(1) of Regulation No 1215/2012 be interpreted as meaning that, where a debtor under a (joint) credit agreement with a bank has, on his own, made the repayments due under that credit agreement, a reimbursement claim (compensation/recourse claim) brought by that debtor against the other debtor under that credit agreement constitutes a derived (secondary) contractual claim arising from that credit agreement?

(2)      If Question 1 is answered in the affirmative:

Is the place of performance of a debtor’s reimbursement claim (compensation/recourse claim) against the other debtor arising out of the underlying credit agreement to be determined:

(a)      in accordance with the second indent of Article 7(1)(b) of Regulation No 1215/2012 (“provision of services”) or

(b)      in accordance with Article 7(1)(c), in conjunction with Article 7(1)(a), of Regulation No 1215/2012 on the basis of the lex causae?

(3)      If Question 2(a) is answered in the affirmative

Is the service characterising the credit agreement the granting of the loans by the bank, and is, therefore, the place of performance of that service determined in accordance with the second indent of Article 7(1)(b) of Regulation No 1215/2012 by the registered office of the bank, if the loans were provided exclusively at that place?

(4)      If Question 2(b) is answered in the affirmative:

For the purpose of determining the place of performance for the non-performed contractual obligation in accordance with Article 7(1)(a) of Regulation No 1215/2012, is the decisive date:

(a)      the date on which the two debtors took out the loans (March 2007) or

(b)      the dates on which the loan debtor entitled to recourse made to the bank the payments from which he derives the recourse claim (June 2012 to June 2014)?

On those grounds, the Court (Third Chamber) hereby rules:

  1. Article 7(1) of Regulation (EU) No 1215/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 12 December 2012 on jurisdiction and the recognition and enforcement of judgments in civil and commercial matters must be interpreted as meaning that a recourse claim between jointly and severally liable debtors under a credit agreement constitutes a ‘matter relating to a contract’, as referred to in that provision.
  2. The second indent of Article 7(1)(b) of Regulation No 1215/2012 must be interpreted as meaning that a credit agreement, such as that at issue in the main proceedings, between a credit institution and two jointly and severally liable debtors, must be classified as a ‘contract for the provision of services’ for the purposes of that provision.
  3. The second indent of Article 7(1)(b) of Regulation No 1215/2012 must be interpreted as meaning that, where a credit institution has granted a loan to two jointly and severally liable debtors, the ‘place in a Member State where, under the contract, the services were provided or should have been provided’, within the meaning of that provision, is, unless otherwise agreed, the place where that institution has its registered office, and this also applies with a view to determining the territorial jurisdiction of the court called upon to hear and determine an action for recourse between those joint debtors.

Read the full decision, here…





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