Dualism of Ukrainian Commercial Courts: Exploratory Study
The Hague Journal on the Rule of Law, 6(2), 2014
28 Pages Posted: 23 Jun 2014 Last revised: 6 Feb 2015
Date Written: June 21, 2014
This paper aims at exploring the core characteristics of the so-called black and white tracks of the dual commercial justice system in Ukraine through a five-year ethnographic case study of court experiences of selected Ukrainian companies. The empirical findings of this study confirm that the majority of litigants in routine cases have rather positive experiences in courts, while a minority of the cases are diverted to the black track resulting in justice not being delivered. It is argued that the black track within the Ukrainian judiciary is consciously designed and reinforced by the ruling elite as a part of the state governance structure and is subjected to more diverse and contradictory pressures than in Russia. At the same time, this study reveals the astonishing efficiency of the commercial courts in terms of time and cost savings. This zebra-like image suggests that the white ‘stripes’ of Ukrainian courts are brighter, and the black ‘stripes’ are even darker than commonly perceived.
Keywords: courts, efficiency of justice, corruption, Ukraine
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