The European Court of Human Rights’ decision on a new appeal in civil proceedings – a new court look at old issues?

Available in Russian

Author: Yurkina Elena Evgenievna

Keywords: Abramyan and Others; Abramyan and Yakubovskiye; cassation appeal; civil procedure; Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms; exhaustion of domestic remedies; supervisory review; The European Court of Human Rights


After the reformation of the Russian Code of Civil Procedure in 2012, the European Court had to examine the new cassation procedure introduced by the reform as a remedy to be exhausted by the applicants before bringing their cases to the Court. In its decision in the case Abramyan and Yakubovskiye v. Russia the ECHR departed from its previous approach to some elements of case revision in Russian civil procedure. In this article the author analyses the reasons for this. The article also contains a historical overview of the requirement to exhaust domestic remedies and describes the reasons why this requirement appeared in the text of the European Convention. Also described are previous cases (Tumilovich v. Russia, Denisov v. Russia and Martynets v. Russia) in which the Court examined the procedure for civil case review in the third instance (supervisory review). The reasons for which the Court departed from its previous approach in Abramyan and Yakubovskiye – where it found that the amended review in the third instance (new cassation appeal) differs from the supervisory-review existing before the reform of 2012 – are analyzed in the article. Finally, the author describes some potential problems that may arise in the cassation procedure and become a reason for lodging a complaint with the European Court.

About the author: Elena E. Yurkina – Candidate of Sciences (PhD) in Law, Master Droits de l’Homme (Strasbourg University), PhD researcher at Lausanne University.