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Case law developments

26 Jun 2012

On 21 June 2012, after a long litigation process, Lithuanian Supreme Administrative Court ("SAC") adopted a ruling concerning the decision of Lithuanian Competition Council imposing a fine on milk handlers that were in breach of Article 5 of Lithuanian Law on Competition. SAC upheld the decision of Vilnius Regional Administrative Court stating that limitation period expired. Therefore, the Court did not investigate the compliance of defendants' actions with the requirements of the Law on Competition.

Furthermore, the Court in this case filled a “legal gap” that existed under the Law on Competition (25 October 2007 version) in respect of calculation of limitation period when the court returns the case back to the Competition Council for further investigation. SAC stated that there is no legal gap in respect of calculation of limitation period and ruled out that the fact that the law did not set any exception for calculation of limitation period means that such exceptions were not determined by the legislator; <...>  the absence of explicit provisions in the mentioned legal norm determining that limitation period in certain cases may be suspended means that this legal norm implicitly sets out that the limitation period is calculated in all cases equally and does not depend on circumstances of litigation proceedings in Competition Council and courts.

For more information see the case No. A520 – 2136/2012

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