Case study 4 - commercial law - contract - Belgium

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In this case study on commercial law – contract, Member States were asked to advise the seller on litigation costs in order to consider the following situations:

Case A – National situation: A company delivered goods worth 20.000 euros. The seller has not been paid because the buyer considers that the goods do not conform to what was agreed.

The seller decides to sue to obtain the full payment of the price.

Case B – Transnational situation: A company whose head office is located in Member State B delivers goods worth 20.000 euros to buyer in Member State A. The contract is subject to Member State B’s law and written in Member State B’s language. This seller has not been paid because the buyer located in Member State A considers that the goods do not conform to what was agreed. The seller decides to sue in Member State A to obtain full payment of the price as provided under the contract with the buyer.


Costs of proceedings

Important preliminary remark: Lawyers’ costs and fees are not regulated in Belgium (these costs and fees depend on the difficulty and scale of the case, the name and reputation of the lawyer, the urgency of the matter, the outcome of the case, etc.). However, lawyers in Belgium are bound by the rules of professional conduct and are legally required to estimate costs within suitably restrained limits (see above).

The estimate of costs is provided on a purely indicative basis.


Costs in Belgium

Costs for Court, Appeals and Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)


Case study

Court

Appeal proceedings

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)

Initial court fees

Transcription fees

Initial court fees

Transcription fees

Does this option exist in this type of case?

Fees

Case A

EUR 82

between EUR 7.57 and EUR 34.48 per page

EUR 186

between EUR 7.57 and EUR 34.48 per page

Yes

See the ‘Cost of mediation’ section of the page dealing with Mediation in Belgium

Case B

EUR 52 (European Payment Order)

between EUR 7.57 and EUR 34.48 per page

EUR 186

between EUR 7.57 and EUR 34.48 per page

Yes

See the ‘Cost of mediation’ section of the page dealing with Mediation in Belgium



Costs for lawyer, bailiff and expert


Case study

Lawyer

Bailiff

Expert

Is representation compulsory?

Average costs

Is representation compulsory?

Pre-judgment costs

Post-judgment costs

Is use compulsory?

Case A

no

around EUR 2000

no

around EUR 250

around EUR 250

no

Case B

no

around EUR 2000

no

around EUR 52

around EUR 100

no



Costs for witness compensation, pledge or other guarantee and other relevant fees  


Case study

Witness compensation

Pledge or other guarantee

Are witnesses compensated?

Cost

Does this exist and when and how is it used?

Case A

yes

between EUR 15.65 and EUR 48.24

In civil cases, as a general rule, an obligation to provide a security when instituting proceedings may be imposed in the situation provided for in Article 851 of the Judicial Code. This is an exception applying to foreign applicants. A Belgian respondent may request that the foreign applicant or intervening party provide a security. Article 852 specifies the form which the security may take (money, surety, etc.). See fiche on the transparency of costs.

Case B

yes

between EUR 15.65 and EUR 48.24

In civil cases, as a general rule, an obligation to provide a security when instituting proceedings may be imposed in the situation provided for in Article 851 of the Judicial Code. This is an exception applying to foreign applicants. A Belgian respondent may request that the foreign applicant or intervening party provide a security. Article 852 specifies the form which the security may take (money, surety, etc.). See fiche on the transparency of costs.



Costs for legal aid and other reimbursement

See the ‘Legal Aid’ section of the page dealing with costs of proceedings.


Costs for translation and interpretation


Case study

Translation

Interpretation

Other costs relating to transnational disputes?

When and under which conditions is it necessary?

Approximative cost?

When and under which conditions is it necessary?

Approximative cost?

Description

Approximative cost?

Case A

when the documents are necessary for the proceedings

between EUR 7.57 and EUR 34.48 per page

when the respondent does not understand the language of the proceedings

between EUR 31.61 and EUR 54.62 per hour

Case B

when the documents are necessary for the proceedings

between EUR 7.57 and EUR 34.48 per page

when the respondent does not understand the language of the proceedings

between EUR 31.61 and EUR 54.62 per hour

costs of order for enforcement

around EUR 100



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Last update: 07/06/2019