Decision of the Regional Court in Warsaw 24th Civil Division of 13th October 2015
XXIV C 500/14
- The factual basis of an action in group proceedings is a conglomerate of statements indicated by a group’s representative in the substantiation of the statement of claims, from which the claim of each of the group members expressed therein is derived. A similar basis of claims pursued in an action may be spoken of when the basic factual circumstances comprising the basis of the demand in the statement of claims are equal.
- Conclusion by each of the members of their own, i.e. not the same as the others, agreement with the defendant excludes the existence of the same factual basis of the claim pursued in the action.
- A similar basis of claims pursued in the action may be spoken of when the basic factual circumstances comprising the basis of the demand in the statement of claims are equal.
- On the basis of the Act on Pursuing Claims in Group Proceedings, it is of no significance whether claims arise from the same or different legal relationships.
- In the case being considered, the issue is the agreements concluded with the use of the same standard terms including a contentious clause defining the principles for determination of the value of amounts to be paid to members of the group and amounts to be collected by the defendant from the group members’ funds originating from redemption of fund participation units purchased with the regular premiums in the event of termination of the life insurance policy agreements with the capital fund for reasons other than death. The template designation itself, as invoked by the defendant, does not prejudge the different content of individual provisions. Indeed, each of the agreements did contain the same provision defining the value and the manner of determination of amounts to be collected by the defendant.
- In the case under consideration no such ‘circumstances of conclusion of the agreement’ are presented which would substantiate the need to take evidence from testimony of all group members. In the statement of claims the claimant does not invoke the circumstance of conclusion by the group members of insurance agreements as a result of their having been misled or hoaxed which would substantiate the taking of the above-mentioned evidence in order to examine the motivating process or group members’ individual characteristics such as education, occupation, life experience, and similar circumstances. This is because a relevant circumstance in the case being considered is the very fact that the group members concluded with the defendant agreements containing contentious clauses which for the defendant constitute a basis for collecting the amounts previously paid in advance by the members of the group and which, according to the said members, are glaringly extortionate.