Latvia - Central Authority (Art. 2) and practical information

Central Authority(ies):

Ministry of Justice 

Contact details:
Address: Ministry of Justice
Brivibas Boulevard 36
LV - 1536 RIGA
Latvia
Telephone: +371 67036824; +371 67036866; +371 67036812
Fax: +371 6721 0823
E-mail:

tm.kanceleja@tm.gov.lv

General website: http://www.tm.gov.lv/
Contact person: Mrs Vineta Lecinska-Krutko
Languages spoken by staff: English, Russian, Latvian

Practical Information
(The following information was provided by the relevant State authorities or was obtained from the replies to the Evidence Convention Questionnaires)
Blocking statutes: Yes, there are two European instruments of this nature:

Council Regulation (EC) No 2271/96 of 22 November 1996 protecting against the effects of the extra-territorial application of legislation adopted by a third country, and actions based thereon or resulting therefrom (see, Article 5(1)).

Directive 95/46/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 24 October 1995 on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data (See, Art. 25(1)).

Chapter I
(Letters of Requests)
Transmission of Letters of Requests: Letters of Request are first sent to the Central Authority of the requesting State before being sent to the Central Authority of the requested State.
Authority responsible for informing of the time and place of the execution of Letter of Request (Art. 7): Judicial authority competent to execute the request.
Presence of judicial personnel at the execution of the Letter of Request (Art. 8): Declaration of applicability. See Competent Authority.
Privileges and duties existing under the law of States other than the State of origin and the State of execution (Art. 11): No declaration of applicability.
Translation requirements (Arts 4(2) and 33):  Accepts Letters of Requests written in or translated into French, English, Russian and Latvian.
Costs relating to execution of the Letters of Request (Arts 14(2)(3) and 26): In compliance with Article 14(2) of the Evidence Convention the court shall notify the Ministry of Justice regarding the costs of execution of request of a foreign country for taking of evidence, if any have incurred.
The Ministry of Justice may request the competent authority of the foreign country to cover the costs of execution of request of a foreign country for taking of evidence which have incurred in accordance with Article 14(2) of Evidence Convention.
Time for execution: 1-3 months
Art 23 pre-trial discovery of documents: Letter of Request may be executed (no declaration).
Information about domestic rules on the taking of evidence:  European E-justice Portal - Latvia

European Judicial Network in civil and commercial matters - Latvia

Witness examination under Chapter I
Should Letters of Request include specific questions to be used during witness examination or only a list of matters to be addressed? Prefarable to include specific questions
Is it a public or private hearing? Public hearing.
Do the judicial authorities "blue-pencil" Letters of Requests (i.e. rephrase, restructure and / or strike out objectionable questions or offensive wording so that a Letter of Request may be executed under the laws of the requested State)? Yes.
Is the witness provided in advance with a copy of the questions / matters to be addressed as contained in the Letter of Request? No.
Are documents produced by the witness authenticated by the court? No information available.
Is an oath generally administered to the witness? No. However, before being examined, a witness shall sign a declaration to acknowledge that he/she undertakes to testify to the court about everything he/she knows and that criminal liability could be imposed for intentionally giving false testimony.
Can the witness be made subject to further examination and recall? Yes but a second Request is necessary.
Are there sanctions for non-appearance of witness? According to Paragraph 2 of Art 109 of the Civil Procedure Law, if a witness, without justified reason fails to attend a hearing after being summoned by a court or a judge, the court may impose a fine, or have the witness brought to court by force.
Must interpreters who assist with the witness examination be court-certified? No.
How is the testimony transcribed? In accordance with the Civil Procedure Law, Article 61, minutes of the court sitting shall be kept at every sitting of the Court. The Course of the court sitting also is recorded by using technical means.
Chapter II
(Taking of evidence by diplomatic officers, consular agents and commissioners)
Article 15 Applicable.
Article 16 Applicable. See Competent Authority.
Article 17 Applicable. See Competent Authority.
Article 18 No declaration of applicability (i.e., a diplomatic officer, consular agent or commissioner may not apply for appropriate assistance to obtain evidence by compulsion).
Taking of evidence by video-links
(under either chapter)
 
Chapter I
Are there legal obstacles to the use of video links? No. Generally Latvia interprets the Convention as medium neutral; however, other States Parties' interpretation of provisions of Articles 7 and 8 may have effect on the possibilities of using video link in the taking of evidence abroad. 
Technology used: No information available.
Level of interpretation required: No information available.
Simultaneous or in sequence interpretation: No information available.
Interpretation required in which jurisdiction? No information available.
Who pays for the interpretation? No information available.
How would a request for evidence be handled if witness not willing? No information available.
Chapter II
Are there legal obstacles to the use of video links? No. Generally Latvia interprets the Convention as medium neutral; however, other States Parties' interpretation of provisions of Article 19 may have effect on the possibilities of using video link in the taking of evidence abroad.
Technology used: No information available.
Level of interpretation required: No information available.
Simultaneous or in sequence interpretation: No information available.
Interpretation required in which jurisdiction? No information available.
Who pays for the interpretation? No information available.
Bilateral or multilateral agreements Bilateral conventions on judicial co-operation: Belarus, Kyrgyzstan, Republic of Moldova, Russian Federation, Ukraine and Uzbekistan.

Council Regulation (EC) No. 1206/2001 of 28 May 2001 on cooperation between the courts of the Member States in the taking of evidence in civil or commercial matters.

Useful links:  

(This page was last updated on 28 July 2014)

Conventions (incl. Protocols and Principles)