New restrictions on the work of the courts

On the basis of Article 83.a of the Courts Act (the “CA”) the President of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Slovenia issued on 13 November 2020 the Order on special measures from Article 83a of the CA due to the declared epidemic of the infectious disease COVID-19 in the territory of the Republic of Slovenia (the “Order”), which further restricts the work of the courts. The Order was published in the Official Gazette of the Republic of Slovenia on the same day and is in effect as of 16 November 2020 until its revocation, whereby – as the previous order of the President of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Slovenia of 19 October 2020, which was replaced by the Order – envisages the measures set out therein to be reviewed weekly.

Pursuant to the Order, all courts have been since 16 November 2020 operating in a limited extent in accordance with Article 83 of the CA. The courts thus call hearings and perform other procedural acts only in certain urgent matters set out in Article 83 of the CA; in addition, the work of courts has also not been affected in criminal matters in which criminal prosecution would become statute-barred within six months of the enforcement of the Order.

In non-urgent matters and in matters which, notwithstanding the provision of Article 83 of the CA, are not considered urgent pursuant to the Order, the courts issue decisions and serve judicial documents, however, do not hold hearings or perform other procedural acts that inevitably require the physical presence of the parties or other participants in the proceedings and also do not provide office hours. All hearings in these matters during the term of the Order are deemed canceled, unless convened by videoconference.

In non-urgent matters and in matters, which are not considered urgent in accordance with the Order, procedural deadlines have been suspended; they will start on the first day following the publicly announced revocation of the President of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Slovenia.

Finally, the Order also maintains in force the other special measures provided for in the previous order of the President of the Supreme Court of 19 October 2020.

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