Unjust enrichment

A person who has been unjustly enriched at the expense of another must return to the impoverished party what was acquired by unjust enrichment.

Put simply, the provision of the Civil Code (Act No. 89/2012 Sb.) stipulates that no one should unjustly enrich themselves at the expense of others. An unjustly enriched person is a person that has been enriched “with no just cause”.

In cases of non-monetary performance, it may be difficult to recover the unjust enrichment. If it is not possible to return the unjust enrichment (e.g. because the thing has ceased to exist), the impoverished party is usually entitled to a pecuniary compensation in the amount equal to the usual value of the enrichment.

Please note that, in the event of litigation, the person who received the performance is obliged to claim and prove the title under which the performance was received. For example, the person who claims to have received performance to settle a debt must prove that such a debt actually existed. Otherwise, there is a risk that the performance received will be considered unjust enrichment and the person will have to return it.

We are aware that it can be often difficult for laymen to distinguish between proper performance and unjust enrichment. Our experienced lawyers will thus be happy to help you.

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Do you not know where your case falls or did you not find it on our website? Contact us and we will figure out how we can help you.

What issues do we typically handle for clients in relation to unjust enrichment?

  • Performance for a legal reason that has lapsed (e.g. withdrawal from a contract under which the performance was provided)
  • Unlawful use of someone else’s assets (e.g. use of someone else’s land where the land and the building on it do not have the same owner)
  • Providing performance for a person who was supposed to provide the performance by rights
  • Funds sent to the wrong bank account by mistake
  • Investments in the spouse’s property and subsequent split-up
  • Payment of child maintenance when not due
  • Misappropriation of money kept in custody
  • Analysis of the factual situation and legal assessment of whether the client or someone else has been unjustly enriched at the client’s expense
  • Drafting necessary documents (especially letters before action) and legal submissions (motions to commence proceedings – action)
  • Financial compensation for unjust enrichment