Civil law

Civil law is the most common area of law, which is present in the life of every person, even in its simplest form, whether it is a sale and purchase, the formation of a company, an inheritance dispute or any civil litigation. Even in a seemingly simple civil litigation or non-litigation procedure, it is important to choose the right lawyer with sufficient expertise in civil law.

The procedure in civil proceedings

A polgári peres eljárás időtartama eltérhet az egyes jogterületek függvényében, azonban az ügyfélnek tanácsos minél hamarabb kiválasztani a megfelelő jogi képviselőt. A polgári peres eljárás minden esetben keresetlevéllel kezdődik.

  1. Statement of claim

    The law lays down strict rules as to the content and form of the statement of claim, which must be properly structured in the introductory, substantive and concluding parts. There are various model letters of claim available on the internet, but it is recommended that you use an attorney-at-law and draft a letter of claim with their assistance, so that it is presented in a more precise and legally referenced form during the proceedings.

    The procedural fee must be paid at the same time as the statement of claim. The fee for civil proceedings is determined on the basis of the value of the subject-matter of the case, a percentage of the value of the case, but there are certain types of cases where the fee is set by law. The fee for first-instance proceedings is 6% of the value of the case, but not less than HUF 15,000 and not more than HUF 1,500,000.

  2. Counterclaim

    The court sends the statement of claim to the defendant, who may submit a counterclaim. As with the letter of claim, the law also requires mandatory content for the counterclaim, so the involvement of a legal representative is recommended not only for the plaintiff but also for the defendant. If the defendant fails to submit a written counterclaim and fails to produce an offset or is refused by the court, the court shall, of its own motion and without a hearing, order the defendant to pay the costs of the action in accordance with the letter of claim notified to it.

  3. Reply, rejoinder

    The plaintiff may file a reply to the counterclaim and the defendant may file a rejoinder to the plaintiff's reply. All of these are part of the preparatory phase of the trial.

  4. Preparatory phase of the trial

    In doing so, the court will record all the statements, evidence, motions for evidence and other documents submitted by the parties. Once the court has closed the preparatory phase, only in exceptional cases may requests for evidence be made.

  5. Trial on the merits

    It is possible to conclude a case in a single hearing, but it is also possible for litigation to drag on for years.

  6. Decision making

    The court can make one of two types of decision, depending on whether or not it wishes to close the case on the merits. The court may decide on the merits of the case by judgment, or on other issues raised in the case by order.

In civil litigation, the lawyer prepares the letter of claim or counterclaim, the reply or rejoinder – depending on whether the plaintiff or defendant is represented –, prepares the motions for evidence, drafts other necessary pleadings and represents the client in the proceedings.

Kecser Law Firm has extensive experience in civil law, including real estate law, corporate law and inheritance law. Below we will discuss inheritance law, and within this section – as a main profile – we will focus on probate proceedings, the first two can be read about by clicking on the relevant term under separate subheadings.

Probate proceedings, will

Probate proceedings are conducted before a notary who holds a probate hearing on the basis of the inventory and other documents. During the probate procedure, the lawyer assists the client in asserting his rights within the time limits, provides more detailed information on the legal consequences of the procedure, if necessary, and represents the heir throughout the procedure.

The probate proceedings are the same in the case of a will, but legal representation is particularly important in this case, as heirs who inherit in a will are often in conflict with heirs who would inherit in the absence of a will.

There are three main types of will: the public will, the written private will and the oral will.

A public will can be made before a notary. In practice, the most common type of will is a written private will, which the testator can write himself or have someone else to write. A joint will is also a written will, which can be made by spouses. In addition to these, there are also oral wills, but the law limits their use to strict rules.

A written private will must meet a number of formal requirements for validity. Firstly, it must indicate the date on which it was drawn up, and it is only valid in case of the following:

  • in the case of a handwritten will, if the testator writes and signs it themselves from start to finish;
  • in the case of a will written by another person, the testator signs it in the presence of two witnesses or, if the testator has already signed it, he/she acknowledges the signature as their own in the presence of two witnesses, and in both cases the will is signed by the witnesses, indicating their capacity as such; or
  • the testator signs the will, whether handwritten by their or by someone else, and deposits it in person at the notary's office, either in open or closed form, marked as a will.

In addition to the above, if the will consists of several pages, it is a further condition of validity that all the pages are numbered consecutively if the will is written in the testator's own handwriting and, if the will is written by another person, that all the pages are numbered consecutively and signed by the testator and both witnesses.

It can therefore be seen that a simple will does not necessarily meet the requirements of the law - the involvement of a lawyer is therefore recommended not only during the probate proceedings but also at the time of drafting the will.

The validity of a will is examined by a notary, but in practice there are still disputes between heirs. If you are involved in a pending probate proceeding and feel that you are unable to properly assert your rights as an heir, please contact Kecser Law Firm, we are at your disposal either before a notary or in civil proceedings.

H-1097 Budapest, Nádasdy u. 12. 6th floor, 613.

This website is operated by Kecser Law Firm (registration number: 4549, registry chamber: Budapest Bar Association – H-1055 Budapest, Szalay u. 7.) in accordance with the laws and internal regulations applicable to lawyers, which together with information on client rights are available at website.

This website uses cookies.

By continuing to use the website, you consent to the use of cookies.