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Sourced from CISG-online website of the University of Freiburg. See also presentation at <http://www.unidroit.info/mm/TheAustrianJudicialSystem.pdf>.

Guide to CISG online: Judicial organisation in the Contracting States of the CISG Judicial organisation in Austria (Overview)

The CISG has entered into force for Austria on 1 January 1989.
Declarations and reservations

Oberster Gerichtshof (OGH)
Supreme Court; seat in Vienna

    Jurisdiction:
  • Appeal against second-instance decisions by the Oberlandesgericht, the Landesgericht / Kreisgericht and the Handelsgericht Wien

    Oberlandesgericht (OLG)
    Court of Appeal (court of the second instance)

    There are 4 OLGs in Austria with seats in Innsbruck, Graz, Linz, Vienna

      Jurisdiction:
    • Appeal against first-instance decisions by the Landesgericht / Kreisgericht and the Handelsgericht Wien

    Landesgericht (LG) or Kreisgericht (KG)
    Regional Court

    There are 18 Landesgerichte / Kreisgerichte in Austria. The courts of this level with seat in the capitals of the Bundesländer (for the Bundesland Vorarlberg with seat in Feldkirch) are called "Landesgericht", all others are called "Kreisgericht". In Graz and Vienna, the LGs for civil matters and for criminal matters are seperate courts; the LG with competence for civil matters is therefore called "Landesgericht für Zivilrechtssachen" (LGZ).
      Jurisdiction:
    • Disputes involving a value exceeding ATS 100,000* at first instance
    • Appeal against decisions by the Bezirksgericht

    Handelsgericht Wien (HG)
    Commercial Court

      Jurisdiction:
    • Special jurisdiction over disputes in commercial matters in Vienna involving a value exceeding ATS 100,000* according to § 51 I Nr. 1 JN
    • Appeal against decisions by the Bezirksgericht für Handelssachen Wien

    Bezirksgericht (BG)
    District Court

      Jurisdiction:
    • Disputes in civil matters involving a value not exceeding ATS 100,000* according to § 49 I JN

    Bezirksgericht für Handelssachen Wien (BG-H)
    District Court for Business Matters

      Jurisdiction:
    • Special jurisdiction over disputes in commercial matters in Vienna involving a value not exceeding ATS 100,000* according to § 52 I JN

    Note: The overview only extends to courts that exercise jurisdiction over international sales contracts under the CISG.

    * This amount has been changed a number of times since the CISG entered into force for Austria:
    For claims brought between 1 August, 1989 and 30 June, 1991 it was ATS 50,000.
    For claims brought between 1 July, 1991 and 30 June, 1993 it was ATS 75,000.
    Since 1 July, 1993 it is ATS 100,000.

    Abbreviations:
    ATS = Austrian Schillings
    JN = Jurisdiktionsnorm (Austrian Code of Judicial Organisation)
    ZPO = Zivilprozeßordnung (Austrian Code of Civil Procedure)
    Links:
    Rechtsinformationssystem (RIS) (Legal Information System of the Republic of Austria - by the Austrian Federal Chancellery)


    Pace Law School Institute of International Commercial Law - Last updated September 2, 2008
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