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Application no. 31753/03
by Victor GURAU
against Moldova

The European Court of Human Rights (Fourth Section), sitting on 7 November 2006 as a Chamber composed of:

Sir Nicolas Bratza, President,
Mr J. Casadevall,
Mr G. Bonello,
Mr M. Pellonpää,
Mr K. Traja,
Mr S. Pavlovschi,
Mr J. Šikuta, judges,
and Mr T.L. Early, Section Registrar,

Having regard to the above application lodged on 16 July 2003,

Having regard to the decision to apply Article 29 § 3 of the Convention and examine the admissibility and merits of the case together,

Having regard to the observations submitted by the respondent Government and the observations in reply submitted by the applicant,

Having deliberated, decides as follows:


The applicant, Mr Victor Gurau, is a Moldovan national who was born in 1949 and lives in Chişinău. He was represented before the Court by Mr I. Manole, a lawyer practising in Chişinău. The Moldovan Government (“the Government”) were represented by their Agent, Mr Vitalie Pârlog.

A. The circumstances of the case

The facts of the case, as submitted by the parties, may be summarised as follows.

After obtaining a certificate of disablement, the applicant applied in 2000 to the National Social Welfare Office (Casa Naţională de Asigurări Sociale) for a pension. He asked, inter alia, that consideration be given to increasing his pension, taking into account his employment in two companies between 1988 and 1992 and between 1994 and 1997, respectively. Since his request was not upheld, on 2 October 2001 the applicant brought an action against the Social Welfare Office, seeking an increase in his pension.

On 28 May 2002 the Centru District Court partially upheld the applicant’s claim and ordered the Social Welfare Office to include in the applicant’s record of employment the period of employment between 1994 and 1997 and to increase his pension from 20 September 2000. The Social Welfare Office appealed.

On 29 October 2002 the Chişinău Regional Court upheld the appeal, quashed the judgment of 28 May 2002 and dismissed the applicant’s claim. The applicant lodged an appeal in cassation.

By a final judgment of 16 January 2003 the Court of Appeal upheld the applicant’s appeal in cassation, quashed the judgment of the Chişinău Regional Court and upheld the judgment of the Centru District Court of 28 May 2002.

On 26 May 2003 the applicant sent letters to the Bailiff and to the Social Welfare Office complaining about the non-enforcement of the judgment in his favour. According to a certificate issued by the Social Welfare Office on 10 July 2003, the amount of the applicant’s pension had not been re-calculated.

On 8 April 2004 the applicant informed the Court that on 4 August 2003 the Social Welfare Office complied with the judgment and paid him the increased pension. However, he asked the Court to continue the examination of his application and complained about the late enforcement of the judgment in his favour.

B. Relevant domestic law

The relevant domestic law was set out in Sîrbu and Others v. Moldova, nos. 73562/01, 73565/01, 73712/01, 73744/01, 73972/01 and 73973/01, § 12, 15 June 2004.


The applicant complained under Article 6 § 1 of the Convention that his right of access to court had been violated by the late enforcement of the judgment of 16 January 2003.


The applicant complained about the late enforcement of the judgment of 16 January 2003. Article 6 of the Convention provides, insofar as relevant, as follows:

“In the determination of his civil rights and obligations ..., everyone is entitled to a fair ... hearing ... within a reasonable time.”

In their observations, the Government submitted a letter from the Social Welfare Office stating that on 20 March 2003 the latter had complied with the judgment in favour of the applicant and had re-calculated his pension. The letter also stated that on 4 August 2003 the Social Welfare Office had paid the applicant the pension arrears owed to him. They argued that since the judgment had been enforced, the applicant could not claim to be a victim.

The applicant confirmed that the Social Welfare Office had complied with the judgment and had paid him his pension arrears. He did not contest the new amount of the pension but complained about the late enforcement of the judgment of 16 January 2003.

The Court notes that the judgment in favour of the applicant became final and enforceable on 16 January 2003 and required the Social Welfare Office to re-calculate and increase the applicant’s pension. Although the date on which the Social Welfare Office complied with the judgment and re-calculated the applicant’s pension is unclear (20 March 2003 and 4 August 2003 according to the Government and applicant respectively), the date of the payment of the re-calculated pension is not contested; both parties agree on 4 August 2003, that is less than eight months after the judgment had become final and enforceable. Having regard to its case-law on the subject (see, for example, Timofeyev v. Russia, no. 58263/00, § 37, 23 October 2003) and to the fact that the Social Welfare Office fully complied with the judgment within a relatively short period, the Court finds that it was enforced within a “reasonable time”. There being, in addition, no factors in the present case which could be considered to have required special diligence and speedier enforcement, the Court finds that the complaint does not disclose any appearance of a violation of Article 6 § 1 of the Convention (see, for example, Osoian v. Moldova (dec.), no. 31413/03, 28 February 2006).

Accordingly, the application must be rejected as being manifestly ill-founded, pursuant to Article 35 §§ 3 and 4 of the Convention.

For these reasons, the Court unanimously

Decides to discontinue the application of Article 29 § 3 of the Convention and declares the application inadmissible.

T.L. Early Nicolas Bratza
Registrar President