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HomeEconomyU.S. court ruling paves way for depositor case against Lebanese bank

U.S. court ruling paves way for depositor case against Lebanese bank

BEIRUT (Reuters) – A U.S. appeals court ruled this week that a case against Lebanese commercial banks could be heard outside Lebanon, according to a decision seen by Reuters, opening the door to more cases for depositors seeking to unfreeze banks. Paved the way for funding.

The court ruled on Thursday in a case brought by Lebanese depositors against major bank Audi Bank, overturning a federal district court ruling that said Beirut courts had “exclusive jurisdiction” to hear the case in Lebanon bank.

During Lebanon’s three-year financial meltdown, banks imposed tight controls on withdrawals in US dollars and local currencies, losing more than 90% of their value.

These restrictions have not yet become law and have been challenged in local and international courts by depositors seeking to get their funds back quickly in US dollars, with mixed results.

Pull The German family filed a lawsuit in New York Supreme Court in December 2020, alleging that Bank Audi had breached its contract by refusing to transfer funds abroad at the onset of the financial crisis, court documents show.

Bank Audi referred the case to the Federal District Court, which rejected their claim on the grounds that such cases could only be tried by Lebanese courts.

Nada Abdelsater, attorney from ASAS Law, representing Patricia, Stephanie and David Raad, together with attorney Douglas Kellner, said this week’s new The decision may allow them to proceed with the case, saying it “made history”. Bank since the 2019 crisis broke out.

“The door is now open and the real action begins,” she told Reuters.

“This decision rightly removes the main obstacle that has prevented the case from being heard until now…This decision in New York enables us to proceed further with litigation in competent courts other than L ebanon,” Abdelsater added road.

Beirut-based Audi Bank did not immediately respond to a request for comment outside business hours.

Beirut-based lawyer Jeffrey Rotenberg, who represented DLA Piper of Audi Bank in the case, said the decision was “non-precedentary”.

Dismissed and we will proceed in District Court,” Rotenberg told Reuters by email.

Abdelsater said Raads wanted To access their 17 million dollar savings at Audi Bank.



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