Local courts hand over claims to the KPA
On 1st March, 110 claims for private immovable property arising from the armed conflict in Kosovo in 1998 and 1999 was handed over from the Municipal Court of Pristina to the independent Kosovo Property Agency (KPA). The claims that were handed over to the KPA were submitted to the Municipal Court of Pristina from individuals who claim to have lost their property rights as a result of the armed conflict. These claims were submitted to the Municipal Court prior to the establishment of KPA on 4 March 2006, and the claims have been pending in the court.
Pursuant to UNMIK Regulation 2006/50 the KPA has, subject to appeal to the Supreme Court of Kosovo, exclusive jurisdiction to resolve claims for private immovable property including commercial properties and agricultural land. It is a precondition that the claims must arise from the armed conflict in 1998 and 1999 in order to fall under the exclusive jurisdiction of the KPA.
Section 18 of the regulation requires all courts in Kosovo which have received claims for private immovable arising from the armed conflict prior to the establishment of the KPA to hand over the claims to the KPA. The only claims excluded from this provision are those claims in which the judicial proceedings before the courts had already been commenced on 4 March 2006.
Yesterdays handover of claims was the first of several handovers from the courts in Kosovo scheduled to take place. The KPA expects some 900 claims to be handed over in total. After the claims have been handed over by the courts, they will be processed by the KPA and decided by the independent Kosovo Property Claims Commission (KPCC). The KPCC is composed of two international commissioners and one local commissioner, all being experts in the field of property law. The decisions from the KPCC can be appealed to the Supreme Court of Kosovo.
The KPA calls upon all individuals who have submitted such claims to the courts in Kosovo to contact one of the KPA offices as soon as possible in order to receive information about the proceedings of their claim.