Latvia has embraced a comprehensive reform process of its justice system in recent years, investing in modernising and digitalising its procedures to fulfil its commitment to facilitating access to justice for all. The Latvian Sustainable Development Strategy until 2030 (“Latvia2030”), the National Policy Development Plan for 2021-2027, the Digital Transformation Guidelines for 2021-2027, and the Justice Strategy for 2022-2026 are some of the strategic documents that inform a vision aligned with the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 16.3, which calls for all member states to “promote the rule of law at the national and international levels, and ensure equal access to justice for all”.

Latvia has achieved much, including the use of digital technologies and data for the random distribution of court cases, authentication mechanisms, electronic signature and a court information system (“Tiesu informatīvā sistēma” - TIS), the development of the e-case platform “e-lietas platforma” and the one-stop-shop “” portal.

Building on these achievements, Latvia could develop a coherent approach to the implementation and seamless delivery of online dispute resolution (ODR). In addition, developing ODR in-court and out-of-court dispute settlement are among Latvia’s commitments in its Justice Strategy for 2022-2026.

The approach to ODR that underpins this report uses a broad understanding that includes all types of dispute resolution mechanisms, such as conciliation, mediation, ombud proceedings, arbitration and court litigation.

This report was developed based on fact-finding interviews with Latvian stakeholders, a peer-to-peer session with other OECD countries to exchange good practices, meetings with specialists, a mapping of pathways to justice and alternative dispute resolution mechanisms, a business survey, focal group discussions, and an extensive literature review. It assesses Latvia’s challenges and opportunities to accelerate its transition to an efficient, effective, fair and accessible justice system. It takes stock of the initiatives implemented so far; offers an overview of the country’s legal, regulatory and policy frameworks; and maps the bottlenecks and synergies involved in implementing a broad, effective and equitable ODR. It makes policy recommendations to improve dispute resolution settings and methods and the use of digital technologies and data to transform dispute resolution. The report also presents recommendations to revamp the three types of claims assessed in this report – simplified procedures, warning procedures and consumer claims.

The report builds on the OECD Recommendations on Digital Government Strategies and on Access to Justice and People-Centred Justice Systems, the Framework and Good Practice Principles for People-Centred Justice, the OECD Criteria for People-Centred Legal and Justice Service Delivery, and the forthcoming OECD Online Dispute Resolution Framework (“OECD ODR Framework”).

This report is the core output of the project “Developing an Effective Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) Concept in Latvia”, supported by the European Commission under Regulation (EU) 2021/005 establishing a Technical Support Instrument (“TSI Regulation”). The action was funded by the European Union via the Technical Support Instrument, and implemented by the OECD, in co-operation with the Directorate-General for Structural Reform Support of the European Commission. This report applies the forthcoming OECD ODR Framework to the Latvian context and specific types of cases, with a view to making pathways for resolving disputes more user-centred while ensuring the protection of fundamental rights in line with national priorities and international standards.

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