According to the findings of Aktuálně.cz, the judge of the District Court in Mělník ended the dispute due to the tragic death of the parents. The Supreme Court ultimately ruled that he was entitled to more than a million crowns in damages. His brother and cousins also received the same amount. Money to compensate for the hardships caused by the loss of close relatives. A court case illustrates how pain is compensated in the Czech Republic.
Mělník judge Jan Veselý lost his parents in the summer of 2015. His father and mother died in a car accident they did not cause. The driver of the other car was at fault and died in the accident. The man had car insurance with Česká podnikatská pojišťovna, which reimbursed Judge Veselý, his partner, his brother and a close friend of his parents.
The Vesely brothers received 1.2 million crowns each, the insurance company paid 400,000 crowns to the judge’s partner and 200,000 crowns to a family friend. However, they all filed a lawsuit against the insurance company in February 2017. They calculated the shock of sudden death of close relatives and friends in many times higher amount.
As Aktuálně.cz found out, the court case lasted more than six years. The Supreme Court ruled in the second half of April. Although he did not provide the Veselý brothers and two women with the necessary pain relief, he did increase their compensation. The insurance company confirmed to the authors that they would accept the verdict.
A significant reason for the increase in amount
“The degree of intensity of the relationship, the interconnectedness of the parents’ daily coexistence with their sons, the amount of time spent together and the sharing of business activities with the plaintiff (Judge Vesely) are undoubtedly important reasons for increasing the initiation amount,” it says. The verdict issued by the panel of judge Martina Vršanská, Aktuálně.cz has.
Each of the Wesley brothers will receive an additional half a million crowns from the insurance company after the Supreme Court ruling. Judge Vršanská emphasized that the simultaneous loss of both parents played a role in increasing the painful award. According to the Supreme Court, fewer cases took into account the exceptional depth of the Wesley brothers’ relationship with their parents, but they did not reflect that in their rulings.
Česká podnikatská pojišťovna will then include Judge Veselý’s partner and a family friend. The first of them will get an additional 160,000 crowns and the second an additional 100,000 crowns. Judge Vršanská’s team learned that despite not having a family relationship, their bond with the deceased couple was remarkably high.
“The plaintiff, the companion of the son of the deceased, and the plaintiff, their family friend and colleague, can be considered close people due to proven close relationships and exceptional high-quality relationships, (…) , they too, the loss of two close people at the same time is a reason to increase the compensation,” the judge said. said.
Twenty times the average annual salary
The Supreme Court’s ruling follows how compensation for the tragic loss of a loved one is handled in the Czech Republic. It has been decided by the decision of the Constitutional Court since 2015 and by the decision of the Supreme Court since 2018. Both judgments lay down specific standards on which the amount of compensation depends.
It is based on the intensity, quality, and closeness of the relationship between the survivor and the deceased, the age of the deceased, or the survivor’s possible existential dependence on the deceased. At the same time, the other side is taken into account, that is, the fault of the person who caused the death of a loved one. It is true how big his mistake is here.
He wanted to hold a regional court in Ústí, but the president blocked it
- Jan Veselý started as a judicial clerk in 1997. He became a judge in 2000 and from the beginning worked at the District Court in Mělník. In 2008, he became its chairman. In the spring of 2014, he ran for president of the Regional Court in Ústí nad Labem, and he won the election. But the administration was embarrassed, because no one on the selection board was connected to the Ústí justice system. Critics also pointed out that Vesely knew nothing about the regional court.
- In the end, Veselý did not become president of the Ústí Regional Court, as President Miloš Zeman refused to appoint him. He pointed out Review by High Court, according to which the Mělník court headed by Veselý was the worst in the region in several monitored categories. Additionally, 2014 was also the last year Veseli Melnyk presided over the District Court. He was succeeded by Aldrich Gajjar.
“It is necessary to take into account the circumstances of both the survivor and the victim, while in the case of close relatives (spouse, parents, children) the basic amount is twenty times the average gross monthly wages of the national economy for the year preceding the death of the victim,” he explains in the Supreme Court’s current judgment.
Due to their close relationship with their parents, the Vesely brothers’ case was excluded from the baseline calculation, which is why they received more compensation. The case of a woman who lost her daughter and two grandchildren in a traffic accident in the summer of 2016 is exceptional. The driver of the other car caused the accident. Last year, the Supreme Court ordered the insurance company to pay 1.8 million crowns to the woman.
“A very personal and important thing”
Česká podniketaská pojišťovna confirmed to Aktuálně.cz that it will not defend itself against the Supreme Court ruling. In addition, he had to pay both the Veselý brothers and the girls. However, its spokeswoman Renata Čapková did not say what the insurance company’s main argument in the dispute was, due to an obligation of confidentiality.
“We are often forced to deal with the consequences of tragic traffic accidents. When dealing with the claims of survivors, we follow legal regulations, respond to the development of court practice and take into account the views of the professional public. Cases do occur. In rare cases,” he added.
The Veselá brothers and the two women were represented by lawyer Radek Vachtl in the dispute with the insurance company. When asked by Aktuálně.cz, he replied that his clients did not want to comment on the case. “And, at their request, I would say that this is a very personal and very sensitive matter,” he said, adding that the Vesely brothers, the judge’s partner and a family friend, feel victimized by the press’ interest.
Judge Jan Veselý has been working at the District Court in Mělník for 23 years. In August 2020, the then Minister of Justice Marie Penasova (for ANO) temporarily relieved him of his duties due to a disciplinary action. The Supreme Administrative Court reduced his sentence to one-fifth of six months for unauthorized access to the court’s electronic system.
Although he was able to return to the courtroom after the verdict, he remained on leave due to ill health. However, this is no longer the case. “However, she is on parental leave at the time,” Markéta Martincová, spokeswoman for the Mělnice court, told Aktuálně.cz. Judge Vesely handles cases of a civil nature.