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On 14 October 2021, the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation published Judgement No. 44-П/2021 adopted in accordance with Article 47.1 of the Federal Constitutional Law “On the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation”

On 14 October 2021, the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation clarified the order for obtaining compensation of wages by rehabilitated persons.

The case on the review of constitutionality of Article 220, paragraph three of the Civil Procedure Code of the Russian Federation; Article 135, part five, Article 138, part one of the Criminal Procedure Code of the Russian Federation was considered in connection with the complaint of citizen E.Permyakov. The Judgement is based on the previously expressed legal positions of the Court.

Factual Background
In February 2009, E.Permyakov was convicted to deprivation of liberty, and imprisoned in a strict regime correction colony. Three years later, he was released. The sentence was quashed due to lack of corpus delicti; and the applicant’s right to rehabilitation was recognised. Despite having several compensation claims granted, the applicant could not obtain compensation of wages for the imprisonment period. His arguments stating that he never thought to annul the labour contract and at the time of its annulment he was already in detention, were dismissed by court stating that this issue has to be resolved under civil proceedings. E.Permyakov filed a civil claim against his former employer seeking correction of the entry in his employment record book, but the proceedings were discontinued due to organisation bankruptcy.

Position of the Court
Where a court considering the issue of wages compensation under criminal procedure discovers a dispute that should be subject to consideration under civil procedure, and where such procedure ensures most effective way to protect the rights of rehabilitated person, the court can leave relevant claim without consideration. Then, the applicant shall be entitled to seek protection of his or her right to compensation of pecuniary damage within limitation period established under civil legislation. Rehabilitated persons can lodge civil compensation claims for wages that were not received as the result of unlawful or unfounded criminal prosecution, but only if relevant issues had not been previously resolved on the merits within criminal procedure.
Legal mechanisms allow for proving illegality of dismissal from organisation even if such organisation ceased to exist. In this situation, a citizen is entitled to consult archive records storing all the documents related to organisation activities, including those affecting employees’ rights.
Therefore, the challenged provisions do not contradict the Constitution of the Russian Federation. They do not obstruct the rehabilitated in demanding compensation of wages that were not received due to unlawful or unfounded criminal prosecution.
The legislator is not deprived of possibility to improve the order of protection of the right of rehabilitated persons to compensation of damages.

Press Service of the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation

14 October 2021

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