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State Gazette Highlights

November 19, 2020

State Gazette highlights

In issue 98 dated 17 November 2020, the following were promulgated:

1. Law on Amendment and Supplement to the Civil Procedure Code

New provisions have been introduced allowing the attendance of parties to court meetings through video conference and for collecting evidence through video conference.

The law envisages amendments to the Administrative Procedure Code and the Penal Procedure Code, which has introduced new rules regarding the performance of procedural actions through video conference.

The law is effective as from 21 November 2020.

2. Law on Amendment and Supplement to the Measures and Actions During the State of Emergency Act

The most important amendments to the Law are related to:

            а) proceedings by the judicial bodies:

  • An obligation is envisaged for the administrative heads of the judicial bodies during the extraordinary epidemic situation to undertake the measures needed to protect the life and health of participants in the proceedings and court cases, incl. by means of postponing the scheduled proceedings and cases for other dates, as well as one-off suspension of the holding of open court meetings for a period of not more than 14 days;
  • During the extraordinary epidemic situation all messages and documents shall be sent to an e-mail indicated by the party, if this party requested that the award be done electronically. In this case, the award shall be considered made as at the date of sending a confirmation of message receipt. If no confirmation is sent within three days from sending the message, the award shall be done following the common procedure;
  • During the extraordinary epidemic situation the court may postpone a court case if due to hospital treatment, placement under quarantine, isolation or application of forced administrative measures under the Health Act in relation to COVID-19 the party or its representative cannot attend the court heating, and within 7 days after the end of such treatment or measures the party or its representative shall present respective evidence thereof.

 

   b) the requirements for entitlement of monthly social benefits under the Social Assistance Act and the Family Child Assistance Benefits Acts – the application of the statutory requirements for entitlement to benefits shall be postponed until 31 December 2020.

   c) validity term of personal documents (identity card and passport)

  • The validity term of the personal identity cards and passports expiring between 13 March 2020 and 31 January 2021 shall be extended by 6 months (prior to the amendment, in relation to the extraordinary situation, the extended validity term of personal documents was 5 months);
  • The validity term of drivers’ licenses expiring between 13 March 2020 and 31 December 2020 shall be extended by 7 months, as from the expiration date in the license (prior to the change, the extended validity was 6 months).

The Law envisages amendments to the Law on Amendment and Supplement to the Bulgarian Personal Identity Documents Act and the Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria Act.

 

The law is effective as from 21 November 2020, with exceptions.

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