Deadlines in court proceedings during the state of emergency
After proclamation of the state of emergency, it became clear that if preclusive deadlines for certain legal actions expire, under these circumstances, that means that citizens will not be able to protect their rights, guaranteed by Constitution of Republic of Serbia and other general acts. Due to that, Government of the Republic of Serbia adopted the Decree on deadlines in court proceedings during the state of emergency (Official Gazette RS, No. 38/2020) – Decree. The Decree entered into force on 20 March 2020, which is the day of its publication in the Official Gazette of RS.
Why is Decree important?
Declaring a state of emergency leads to changes in the usual way of life, because limitation of individual rights and freedoms in such circumstances is necessary and allowed, for example freedom of movement. Current situation includes not only this restriction but also changed working time of courts and public prosecutors, and of course lawyers. It’s clear that, in this situation, many citizens would miss deadlines for taking certain civil actions, like submission lawsuits. Because of preclusive nature of these deadlines, missing them would cause to citizens permanent loss of ability to protect their rights in court proceedings.
Proclamation of the state of emergency it’s beyond citizens power, so it’s clear that this is real reason for missing deadlines, not their negligence or disinterest. Due to that, in order to protect citizens interests, the Government adopted the Decree.
On which deadlines the Decree applies
According to the Decree, during the state of emergency deadlines for submission these acts are suspended:
Private criminal lawsuits
Initiation of non-litigation proceedings
Initiation of enforcement proceedings
Also, as long as the state of emergency lasts, in all court proceeding initiated by any of acts listed above, suspension includes deadlines for all kind of legal remedies or any other procedural activities.
Same rule is predicted for complaints and extraordinary legal remedies in following proceedings:
Economic offense proceedings
Suspended deadlines will continue to run after ending of the state of emergency.
In one of the earlier articles, we talked about the recommendation for the working time of the courts and public prosecutors, published by Ministry of Justice Republic of Serbia on March 17 2020, shortly after the day of the declaration of the state of emergency, on March 15. In that article, we explained how these recommendation affects the work of courts, public prosecutors, but also lawyers, with the conclusion that attorneys act in a reduced manner in accordance with the recommendations.
For all questions and consultations about this or any other Regulation during the state of emergency Pavleski Law firm is at your disposal.