More than a decade after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, Russia is still trying to build a functioning market economy, achieve a higher growth and, in several conditions, the economical status is reflected into the low debtor's solvency, leading to debt collection procedures in Russia.
Any relation between companies or individuals is regulated by the Russian Civil Code, including the debt collection procedures, as there is no specific law to regulate this kind of proceedings.
In Russia most of the clients for debt collection procedures are banks, other financial institutions or certain utility providers.
Even though the law in Russia provides a fixed value for the interest rate, most debtors do not agree to pay and the sum resulting from interest is usually recovered by trial procedure.
A debt collection procedure in Russia usually starts by an amicable procedure, as a last attempt to recover debts without involving a trial action. However, the Russian Law provide the need of this action and the demand letters sent to the debtor, as well as other documents from this settlement, are recognized by the court.
The pre-trial procedure consists in two phases: soft procedure and hard procedure. In the first step the debtor is informed by phone, e-mails and other similar ways about the debt. This period usually lasts between 1 and 30 days, but can not exceed 60 days.
The hard procedure involves finding further information about the debtor, for example full identity, residence / headquarter, financial information. The creditor sends official demand letters, aiming to inform about the debt and about the consequences of not fulfilling the claim. In this phase the creditor may also visit the debtor and inform him in person about the debt. This procedure can be repeated for 30 to 90 days.
When the debtor is willing to pay the debt, but can not afford the entire payment, the parties may settle on installment payments or the claim may be reduced with the interest or fines applied for missing the deadline.
In case the amiable settlement fails, the creditor is entitled to bring the case before the appropriate Court, entering into the trial procedure.
The Russian Civil Law provides a simplified procedure, by which the creditor may obtain a writ of execution without going through all the trial phases. The writ of execution can be obtained only when the debt is admitted by the debtor and when the documentation is complete.
In this case, the Court issues the enforceable document within five days, which is forwarded to the Federal Bailiff Service and a bailiff is appointed to carry out further procedures in order to recover the debt.
The debtor has the right to contest the writ of execution within ten days, situation in which the case is turned into a regular lawsuit.
The regular lawsuit is also imminebtent when the simplified procedure can not be applied.
In the trial procedure both parties must bring evidence and sustain the case and, in accordance to the Civil Law, the judge sets a date for publishing the decision.
In Russia the Court may postpone the issuance date, but both parties must be informed in written.
When the decision becomes public, both debtor and creditor must receive a certified copy of the court decision.
All the fees are paid in advance, but can be recovered when the court decision is issued in the creditors favor. In this case, the fees are included into the final sum that must be paid by the debtor.