Pure Economic Losses from the Russian Perspective
The article is devoted to the issue of compensation for pure economic losses under Russian law. The category of pure economic losses came into the focus of Russian researchers relatively recently. Currently, the mainstream discussion of Russian scholars on the topic is based on the analysis of foreign cases and arguments related to them. Meanwhile, Russian case law has been enriched with precedents that can lead to a non-consistent way for resolving such kind of disputes. We propose the approach that the reimbursement of pure economic losses directly depends on the determination of the limits of tort liability or its conditions. Thereby, the comprehensive analysis of these conditions will make it possible to more clearly define the scope of the pure economic losses. Nevertheless, the conservatism of the Russian doctrine of tort law and the inconsistency of law enforcement does not always allow us to apply the usual conditions of tort liability as a method for analyzing pure economic losses under Russian law. Thus, we consider the arguments for and against the recovery of pure economic losses that have developed abroad and are often discussed by Russian scholars. Besides, the article deals with the most important cases in which the courts have granted claims for the recovery of the pure economic losses. Nevertheless, the reasoning of the courts does not always look satisfactory, since it has not always been supported by the strict analysis of conditions of tort liability. We also consider cases where courts’ attention to factual circumstances prevails over their legal analysis. Although these cases reflect the current Russian political agenda, we posit that they provide with valuable material for legal discussion on the issue of recovery of pure economic losses. The coherent application of liability conditions would have removed the political context of these cases and led to the concentration of courts’ attention on the legal details of the cases. As a result, the authors postulate the need to analyze the core of tort liability, i.e., its conditions. This will create a more subtle mechanism for setting up tort liability and develop immunity of tort law to exogenous factors related to the political context.