Disciminatory norm of real estate tax rate in Riga in against the Constitution

Constitutional Court of Latvia has found incompatible with the Constitution (Satversme) the norm set in Riga City Council binding regulation setting the rate of real estate tax, if a citizen of an EU Member State, EEA state or the Confederation of Switzerland is declared as residing in the property.

On 29 June 2018 the Constitutional Court took decision in the case No. 2017-28-0306 “On Compliance of Para 31 of the Binding Regulation of 9 June 2015 of the Riga City Council No. 148 “On the Real Estate Tax in Riga” with Article 91 of the Satversme of the Republic of Latvia and the First Part of Article 18 and the First Part of Article 21 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union”.

The case was initiated based on the application of the Ombudsman who had established that the norm included in the Riga City regulations was discriminatory. The Ombudsman had invited Riga City Council to alter the norm until September last year, but no activity was taken; therefore, the Ombudsman went to the Constitutional Court.