Supreme Administrative Court on copies of documents requested from public administration authorities

The Supreme Administrative Court, after having heard a cassation of an insurance company on 22 June 2010, reversed the original judgment of the Provincial Administrative Court in Gliwice (judgment of the Provincial Administrative Court dated 20 July 2010, I OSK 465/10).

The proceedings dealt with the motion of the insurance company filed with the District Executive to convey copies of documents of importing a vehicle (VAT 25, customs documents, sales contract, foreign vehicle registration documents and other documents necessary to register a vehicle). The reason for conveying the copies of documents was the theft of the said vehicle and the process of indemnification for that theft. The party filing the motion cited the regulation of Article 25 of the Insurance Activity Act dated 22 May 2003. After the motion had been turned down, the insurance company filed a claim form with the Provincial Administrative Court in Gliwice, which upheld the position unfavorable to the insurance company basing its judgment on its own interpretation of Article 80, Paragraph 1 of the Polish Road Traffic Act and, at the same time, omitting Article 25 of the Insurance Activity Act.

The Supreme Administrative Court stated the following: „Article 25, Paragraph 1 of the Insurance Activity Act constitutes an independent legal basis for insurance companies to demand, after meeting the requirements specified in the said regulation, particular information and materials from other entities such as courts, public prosecutor’s offices, police, authorities and institutions. This case is about the information and materials which are held by entities which are obliged to make them available regardless of the manner in which the entities took possession of the said information and materials. However, it is an essential requirement that the information or materials referred to in Article 25, Paragraph 1 of the Act be indispensable to the insurance company in order to perform tasks specified in the Insurance Activity Act dated 22 May 2003.”

In practice, the above-mentioned judgment shows the possibility of effective obtaining documents by insurance companies which are necessary to register imported vehicles and which are held by a District Executive Office.
This judgment might also turn out vital in possible proceedings in Self-government Appeal Courts, Provincial Administrative Courts or the Supreme Administrative Court.

The entire content of the judgment can be found HERE