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State liability: no compensation for indirect damage of shareholders

July 2019

In a recently published decision (2C_809/2018), the Swiss Federal Supreme Court rejected damages claims brought by former shareholders of TEMPUS Privatbank Ltd based on the Swiss Federal Liability Act. The shareholders – among them former majority shareholder Oskar Holenweger, who held approx. 90% of the shares – argued that they had been forced to make an emergency sale of the bank following unlawful acts by various Swiss authorities, and that they suffered damage due to the depreciation of their shares. According to the Swiss Federal Supreme Court, such indirect damage is not compensable.

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