Lidings Advocates Reverse Wrongful Judgments in Supreme Court, Protecting Independent Creditors

During a lengthy five-year bankruptcy of the pharmaceutical distributor Grama LLC, the bankruptcy manager challenged transactions with suppliers - large international pharmaceutical companies. Worst-hit was AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals obliged to return the bankrupt distributor 266 million rubles. Lidings represents the company since 2019.

In March 2021 based on the results of the consideration of cassation appeals the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation cancelled all judicial acts under which the client was obliged to return the money and remanded the case for a new trial.

The Supreme Court accepted the arguments of AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals and Johnson & Johnson and recognized the following:

  • Statute of limitations for the transaction in 2015 that the initial bankruptcy manager should have been aware of, can’t be prolongated due to the fact that the current bankruptcy manager discovered it late
  • Transaction can’t be contested on general grounds stipulated in art. 10, 168 of the Civil Code, if its flaws do not exceed those stipulated for suspicious transactions

Lidings' advocates, partner Alexander Popelyuk and senior associate Elizaveta Fursova, represented the client in this case.

Alexander Popelyuk Decision of the Supreme Court has already affected a number of similar disputes involving other pharmaceutical companies that the Grama’s bankruptcy manager is challenging in this case. The total sum of the disputes is over 2 bln rubles. All judicial acts have been canceled and remanded for a new trial to eliminate errors.
Elizaveta Fursova It was our second success in the Supreme Court within this particular bankruptcy case. In the Summer of 2020, the Supreme Court agreed with the judgments of the Court of Appeal supported by us in cassation and recognized the claims of one of the creditors as fictitious.

The precedent set by Lidings' lawyers in this case will reinforce the approach of not qualifying suspicious transactions as void to circumvent the statute of limitations.