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Problems of Recognizing Coronavirus Infection (COVID-19) as a Force Majeure Circumstance

ФИО студента: Ilya Tikhonov

Руководитель: Nikita Ivanov

Кампус/факультет: School of Law

Программа: Civil Law and Commercial Law (Master)

Год защиты: 2021

Coronavirus infection (COVID-19) has seriously impacted civil law relationships and has jeopardized the proper execution of a significant number of civil obligations. The current crisis situation has led to the need to apply legal norms and institutions that regulate the behavior of the parties in the event of non-standard situations. One of these institutions of civil law is force majeure (force majeure), which has become relevant in connection with the emergence of a crisis situation. However, in the course of considering civil disputes, contradictory judicial practice was formed on the admissibility of recognizing coronavirus infection as a force majeure circumstance. The Supreme Court of the Russian Federation published clarifications on this matter, but did not indicate clear criteria by which it would be possible to determine the presence or absence of force majeure during the spread of coronavirus infection. In addition, during the pandemic, state executive bodies issued a number of regulations, according to which COVID-19 was recognized as a force majeure circumstance. The relevance of this work is due to the wide spread of civil disputes involving persons who did not fulfill or improperly fulfilled their obligations during the spread of coronavirus infection and on the basis of which are brought to civil liability. The purpose of this study is to resolve the issue of the possibility of recognizing coronavirus infection as a force majeure circumstance, as well as the possible conditions for such recognition. During the study, we set the following tasks: 1) Define the concept and signs of force majeure in Russian law. 2) Determine the relationship between force majeure and similar institutions of public law. 3) Determine the significance of legal acts of executive authorities and acts of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation (hereinafter referred to as the RF CCI) for the recognition of coronavirus infection as a force majeure circumstance. 4) To identify the conditions for recognizing coronavirus infection as a force majeure circumstance.

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