Leupold-Praesent v German Federal Republic

Date27 Noviembre 1958
CourtObsolete Court (Germany)
Arbitral Commission on Property, Rights and Interests in Germany, First Chamber.

(Wickström, President; Euler, Bennett.)

German Federal Republic.

Treaties — Conclusion and operation of — Accession — Accession in advance — Whether possible.

Treaties — Interpretation of — Miscellaneous — Protocol signed by Parties — Not published or ratified — Whether Protocol can be used in relation to interpretation of another Agreement concluded by same Parties.

Treaties — Modification of — Consent of all Parties — Need for.

Arbitration — Procedure — Jurisdiction — Jurisdiction of Arbitral Commission on Property, Rights and Interests in Germany — Conferred only in relation to rights of United Nations nationals — Extension of that jurisdiction — Conditions of such extension — Capacity to appear as party before Arbitral Commission — Effect of entitlement to “most-favoured-nation” treatment.

The Facts (as stated by the Commission).—“By decision rendered on April 24, 1956, and served upon the complainant on May 17, 1956, the Finanzgericht of Hamburg rejected the appeal lodged by the complainant against the decision dated June 14, 1955, of the Finanzamt of Hamburg-Dammtor concerning a levy imposed under the Equalization of Burdens Law of August 14, 1952, on profits resulting from the conversion under the currency reform of two mortgages on property owned by the complainant.

“By application filed with the Commission on June 16, 1956, the complainant appealed against the decision of the Finanzgericht.

“In its answer, the defendant raised the objection that the Commission had no jurisdiction to entertain the appeal.”

Held: that the complainant was entitled to appear before the Commission. The Commission, however, was incompetent to decide on the complainant's appeal, since it had jurisdiction only with respect to the rights of nationals of one of the United Nations. The jurisdiction of the Commission could have been extended to cover also a right of a Swiss national (i.e., someone who was not a national of one of the United Nations) only through the agreement of all the States parties to the Convention establishing the Commission.

The Commission said: “It will be convenient at the outset to make it clear that the claim directed to the exemption of the complainant from the payment of the above-mentioned levy is based: (1) on the provisions of Article 6 of Chapter Ten of the Convention on the Settlement of Matters Arising out of the War and the Occupation...

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