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24 hours to overcome raiding

On December 24, 2019 The Prime Minister of Ukraine in his report assured us that from now if you suffer from raiding, you can file a complaint with the Ministry of Justice of Ukraine, which will be reviewed and a decision will be taken within 24 hours.

What actually has been adopted by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine and how such innovations will work in practice?

On December 24, a “new” procedure for consideration of complaints in the field of state registration was adopted with updated title: “The procedure for consideration of appeals against decisions, actions or omissions of the state registrar, subjects of state registration, local agencies of the Ministry of Justice.”

The Prime Minister used the flagrant thesis of “24 Hours to overcome Raiders” as a marketing tool to distort the actual meaning. In fact, the new order establishes 24 hours to determine formal grounds for denying a complaint, such as:

  • filing a complaint without complying with the requirements;
  • availability of information about a court ruling on Claimant‘s renunciation of suit, recognition of a claim or approval of the settlement agreement;
  • the availability of the proceedings in connection with a dispute between the same parties on the same subject and the same grounds;
  • the existence of a decision by the Ministry of Justice or its territorial bodies on the same issue;
  • consideration by the Ministry of Justice or its territorial bodies of a complaint on the same issue from the same applicant;
  • filing a complaint by a person without authority;
  • the end of the statutory period of filing the complaint;
  • the issues raised in the complaint are not within the competence of the Ministry of Justice or its territorial bodies.

It worth noting, that in the absence of “formal grounds” for refusal, the complaint will be heard within one month, as before. It should be emphasized that the new order provides for the possibility of “urgent” consideration of a complaint in the case of obvious violations of the law in the decisions, actions or omissions of the state registrar, subjects of state registration, and territorial bodies of the Ministry of Justice. 

However, the new order does not specify how many hours or days can be interpreted as “urgent” and what should be considered a “clear violation of the law”, which in turn allows the appeal authority to manipulate the period for reviewing such complaints.

Thus, nowadays there are several ways to challenge a registrar‘s decision, namely:

  1. To file a complaint directly with the Ministry of Justice;
  2. Тo send a complaint by mail;
  3. To file a complaint online.

The ability to file complaints online through the government services portal “iGov” has recently emerged and allowed Ukrainians to file complaints without actually removing their slippers.

After complaint verification, it is submitted to the commission for consideration of complaints in the sphere of state registration.

In case the illegality of registration of real estate or business is confirmed, the commission gives its opinion on this issue, and the Ministry of Justice or the relevant territorial body decides to satisfy the complaint in the field of state registration or to refuse to satisfy it on the grounds stipulated by law.

It should be emphasized that the Government has recently launched a Counter-Raid Office, which opens a hotline for anti-raiding and can advise the strategy of protecting rights in the event of raid.

In addition, the government also plans to introduce the usage of Google Authenticator by registrars, which will strengthen the protection against the hacking of such a registrar‘s personal computer and protect from the illegal re-registration of property.

Provided such an additional factor of authorization is used, the registrar for any registration action will have to use not only his electronic signature, but also enter the code from his smartphone, which prevents the attacker from breaking both the computer and the smartphone at the same time.

To sum up the above mentioned, we can conclude that the Government has taken a course to completely overcome raiding in Ukraine, but the practical side of these “innovations” will be seen later.

There are still many gaps that allow criminals to commit illegal acts in the field of property registration, and combating them by setting up a single Office to counter raiding and reducing the duration of consideration of these complaints will not be superfluous.