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Estonia terminates agreement with Russia on legal aid

Estonia terminates agreement with Russia on legal aid Estonia terminates legal assistance agreement with Russia (Illustrative photo)

The Estonian government has decided to terminate the agreement with Russia on legal assistance. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is preparing a bill to be sent to the parliament for approval, according to Postimees.

"Our goal is to terminate the treaty as soon as possible because Estonia's clear position is that we do not cooperate with the aggressor. The treaty would be automatically renewed in 2025," said Foreign Minister Margus Tahini.

After the treaty expires, legal cooperation with Russia will be conducted in the same way as with any other third country.

The termination of the legal assistance treaty between Estonia and Russia may lead to problems in the areas of family relations, inheritance, enforcement of court decisions, and recognition of documents.

"The most significant inconvenience that Russian citizens in Estonia and Estonian citizens in Russia will face will be that all official documents, such as marital status certificates, birth certificates, death certificates, etc., will require additional apostille confirmation (recognition of documents - ed.). Currently, there is no such requirement," the lawyer said, pointing to the range of possible problems after the agreement.

"At present, a document issued in one country is automatically valid in another. In some cases, all that is required is a notarized translation. If the agreement is terminated, the documents will have to be apostilled, which will involve additional costs and time," the lawyer adds.

Termination of agreements with Russia

Since Russia's full-scale invasion, Ukraine has cut off diplomatic relations with the aggressor. Countries across Europe and the world have begun to terminate previously signed agreements.

Previously, we wrote that Finland decided to terminate the bilateral agreement with Russia on border cooperation. It was a response to the events in Russia.