Prosecution by a monopolist in the power market

The client’s interests protected by our lawyers against unlawful prosecution by a monopolist in the Ukrainian power market

Electric power supply relations with households are regulated by Article 714 of the Civil Code of Ukraine, Articles 24-27 of the Law of Ukraine “On the Electric Power Industry”, the Rules and Methodology for assessing the volume and value of the electric power unmetered as a result of consumers’ breach of the Rules on Electric Power Use (REPU) approved by the Decree No. 28 of the National Commission for the Regulation of Electric Power Industry of Ukraine dd. 31 July 1996 (as amended from time to time).

As provided for by paragraph 4 of Article 26 of the Law, power consumers shall be liable in compliance with applicable legislation for breaking the contractual terms and conditions, as well as the Rules on Electric Power Use approved by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine.

The Methodology is applied on the grounds of a breach report executed as required by the Methodology, with due regard to the REPU requirements, in cases when any REPU violations are found such as a breach in integrity of seals, sealing materials (wires, tensile cords) used to install seals, integrity of screws on which sealing materials are fixed, or absence of seals with calibration marks on meters (where there is a seal integrity certificate executed as required by the REPU or another document evidencing the actual sealing and transfer of meters or installed seals, and provided there is consumers’ tampering with meters).

Therefore, where there is no possibility to consume unmetered electric power caused by a specific violation, the assessment of such power’s volume and value is unjustified because, as the names of clause 1.1 and section 2 of the above Methodology suggest, it is unmetered electric power that is required to be assessed for volume and value according to the procedure established by the Methodology.

This means, apart from finding a separate violation of the Rules on Electric Power Use such as actual removal of a seal, it is necessary to prove that such violation has resulted in the possibility for the respective consumer to use unmetered electric power.

Again, the possibility to consume unmetered power due to the absence of a seal on the shield of the starting switch and the power meter, where all other seals are not damaged, is just an assumption which has not been confirmed by any relevant proof submitted to the court. The inspection have not detected any damages to power meters or other four seals required to be installed by laws, or any traces of meter tampering, or any unauthorized connections, etc., which is confirmed by the breach report.

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