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Procedural time limits - Slovenia

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

1. Various types of deadline applicable under the various procedural rules in civil matters; e.g. procedural time limits, prescription or limitation periods, pre-established deadlines, etc. 1.
2. List of the various days envisaged as non-working days pursuant to the Council Regulation (EEC, Euratom) No 1182/71 of 3 June 1971. 2.
3. What are the applicable general rules on time limits for the various civil procedures? Provide legislative sources. 3.
4. When an act or a formality has to be carried out within a given period, what is the starting point, i.e. the initial moment from which the period runs (terminus a quo), of this act or this formality (e.g. date of act, event, decision or date of service and/or announcement from which it starts to run)? 4.
4.a) Can the starting point of the period be affected or modified by the manner of transmission or service of documents (personal service by a process server or postal service)? 4.a)
5. From when does this period begin to run? 5.
5.a) When such a period is expressed in days, does the actual date of the act, the event, the decision or the date of service and/or intimation which initiates it count? Does the starting time for any time limit depend in any way on the confirmation or the notification of the action to the recipient? If so, how? 5.a)
5.b) When a time period is expressed in days, does the number of days include calendar days or only working days? For example, if a person is served a document on 4 April 2005 and he or she is requested to answer within 14 days of service, does this mean that he or she is required to answer before:

i)  Monday, 18 April 2005 (calendar days) or

ii)  Friday, 22 April 2005 (working days)? 5.b)

5.c) When such a period is expressed in months or in years? 5.c)
5.d) When do such time periods expire? 5.d)
6. If the period expires on a Saturday, Sunday or a public holiday or non-working day, is it extended until the first following working day? Is this extension applicable even when the period in question has a future event as a starting point? 6.
7. When the request is taken to a court which has its seat on the mainland territory of the Member State (in the case of Member States that comprise entities apart from the mainland territory or have geographically separate entities), are deadlines extended for persons who live/reside in one of these entities or for those who live/reside abroad? 7.
8. Conversely, when the request is taken to a court which has its seat in one of the entities which are geographically distinct from the mainland, are deadlines extended for persons who live/reside in one of these entities or for those who live/reside abroad? 8.
9. Are there time limits for appeals specific to certain civil matters? 9.
10. Can courts, in an emergency or for any other reason, shorten appearance deadlines or set a particular date for appearance? Conversely, can such periods be extended? 10.
11. When an act intended for a party in a place where he/she would benefit from an extension of a time limit is notified in a place where those who reside there do not benefit from such an extension, does the person lose the benefit of such a time limit? 11.
12. What are the sanctions in the event of failure to comply with deadlines? 12.
13. If the deadline expires, what remedies are available to defaulting parties? 13.

 

1. Various types of deadline applicable under the various procedural rules in civil matters; e.g. procedural time limits, prescription or limitation periods, pre-established deadlines, etc.

Under Slovenian procedural law, a deadline is a time period which is limited by two points in time — the start and the end of the time period — and in which a particular procedural action may be carried out, or, in exceptional cases, a time period in which a particular procedural action may not be carried out.

There are various types of deadline (time limit/time period) in Slovenian law:

  • time limits in substantive law and procedural law: time limits in substantive law are laid down by substantive law for asserting rights and are further subdivided into limitation periods in substantive law, when a right ceases to exist under the law itself, and prescription periods, when a right may no longer be exercised merely on the basis of an objection from a party, whereas procedural time limits are set for performing procedural actions;
  • statutory and judicial time periods: statutory time periods and their duration are set directly by the law itself, whereas judicial time limits are set by a court, account being taken of all the specific circumstances of the case;
  • extensible and non-extensible deadlines: judicial deadlines are extensible, but not statutory deadlines;
  • subjective and objective time limits: subjective time limits start to run when an eligible person is informed of a particular event or has been given the possibility of performing a procedural action, and objective time limits start to run when a specific objective circumstance begins to apply;
  • procedural limitation periods and inquiry periods: at the end of the procedural limitation period, it is no longer possible to perform a specific procedural action effectively but a delay in the inquiry period has no direct statutory consequences.

2. List of the various days envisaged as non-working days pursuant to the Council Regulation (EEC, Euratom) No 1182/71 of 3 June 1971.

Pursuant to Regulation No 1182/71, “working days” means all days other than public holidays, Saturdays and Sundays. The following days are designated as public holidays in Slovenia by the Holidays and Days Off in the Republic of Slovenia Act [1]:

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  • 1 and 2 January - new year;

  • 8 February - Prešeren day, Slovenian cultural holiday;

  • 27 April - day of resistance against occupation;

  • 1 and 2 May - labour public holiday;

  • 25 June - national day;

  • 1 November - All Saints Day;

  • 26 December - independence day.

There are also the following public holidays in the Republic of Slovenia:

  • Easter Sunday and Monday - Easter;

  • Whit Sunday - Whitsun;

  • 15 August - the Assumption of the Virgin Mary;

  • 31 October - Reformation Day;

  • 25 December - Christmas.


[1] Published in the Official Gazette of the Republic of Slovenia No 26/1991.

3. What are the applicable general rules on time limits for the various civil procedures? Provide legislative sources.

The general rules on procedural time limits in Slovenian law are laid down by the Civil Procedure Act - ZPP ([2]). The provisions of Articles 110-112 and Articles 116-121 of the ZPP thus apply directly to the civil procedure, and mutatis mutandis to the non-litigious civil procedure (Article 37 of the Non-Litigious Civil Procedure Act [3]), the enforcement and insurance procedure (Article 15 of the Execution of Judgments in Civil Matters and Insurance of Claims Act [4]) and the procedure of compulsory settlement or bankruptcy due to insolvency of an economic entity or its liquidation (Article 15 of the Compulsory Settlement, Bankruptcy and Liquidation Act [5]).

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[2] Officially consolidated version published in the Official Gazette of the Republic of Slovenia No 36/2004.

[3] Published in the Official Gazette of the Socialist Republic of Slovenia No 30/1986.

[4] Officially consolidated version published in the Official Gazette of the Republic of Slovenia No 40/2004.

[5] Published in the Official Gazette of the Republic of Slovenia Nos 67/93, 39/97 and 52/99.

4. When an act or a formality has to be carried out within a given period, what is the starting point, i.e. the initial moment from which the period runs (terminus a quo), of this act or this formality (e.g. date of act, event, decision or date of service and/or announcement from which it starts to run)?

The event from which the time period starts to run is, in most cases, the judicial service of a judgement, the action of an adversary or a non-procedural event. If the time period is stipulated in terms of days, the day of service or communication or the day of the event from which the time period must be counted is not included; rather, the time period starts to run from the first following day.

4.a) Can the starting point of the period be affected or modified by the manner of transmission or service of documents (personal service by a process server or postal service)?

Under Slovenian law, documents are served by post, by court official, at court or in another manner laid down by law. Whenever a specific time period starts to run from the time of service, the manner of service of the relevant documents does not affect the start of the time period. The time period starts to run when, in accordance with the law, service was actually carried out or is considered to have been carried out.

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5. From when does this period begin to run?

5.a) When such a period is expressed in days, does the actual date of the act, the event, the decision or the date of service and/or intimation which initiates it count? Does the starting time for any time limit depend in any way on the confirmation or the notification of the action to the recipient? If so, how?

If the time period is expressed in days, the day of service or notification or the day of the event from which the time period must be counted is not included; rather, the time period starts to run from the first following day (Article 111/2 of the ZPP). Confirmation of receipt or notification of an event to a recipient is never a condition for the start of the time period.

5.b) When a time period is expressed in days, does the number of days include calendar days or only working days? For example, if a person is served a document on 4 April 2005 and he or she is requested to answer within 14 days of service, does this mean that he or she is required to answer before:

i)  Monday, 18 April 2005 (calendar days) or

ii)  Friday, 22 April 2005 (working days)?

A time period expressed in days runs without interruption and comprises calendar days. The non-working days included in that period (Saturdays, Sundays, public holidays or other non-working days) do not extend this time period, unless the last day of the time period is a non-working day.

In this context, account must be taken of the provision of Article 83 of the Courts Act ([6]), under which, during court holidays from 15 July to 15 August, time periods in procedural law do not run except in urgent cases (e.g. lawsuits concerning treasury bills, bankruptcy, etc.).

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If a time period of 14 days for an answer ran from the time of service of a document on 4 April 2005, the last day of the time period was Monday, 18 April 2005.


[6] Officially consolidated version published in the Official Gazette of the Republic of Slovenia No 23/2005.

5.c) When such a period is expressed in months or in years?

The start and duration of a time period expressed in months or in years is calculated in the same way, mutatis mutandis.

5.d) When do such time periods expire?

Periods expressed in days expire at the end of the last day of the time period. Time periods that are expressed in months or in years expire at the end of the day in the last month or year that corresponds in number to the day on which the time period started to run. If that number of day does not exist in the last month, the time period ends on the last day of that month (Article 111/3 of the ZPP).

Are there any exceptions or particularities that apply to starting points for time limits in certain civil procedures?

No.

6. If the period expires on a Saturday, Sunday or a public holiday or non-working day, is it extended until the first following working day? Is this extension applicable even when the period in question has a future event as a starting point?

If the period expires on a Saturday, Sunday or a public holiday or non-working day, as stipulated by the law on holidays, the period expires on the first following working day (Article 111/4 of the ZPP). This applies irrespective of the moment of, or reason for, the start of the time period.

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7. When the request is taken to a court which has its seat on the mainland territory of the Member State (in the case of Member States that comprise entities apart from the mainland territory or have geographically separate entities), are deadlines extended for persons who live/reside in one of these entities or for those who live/reside abroad?

Slovenia is a state with a single territory that does not include geographically separate entities. Judicial authority (jurisdiction) applies uniformly throughout the territory of the country. Consequently, there are no particularities concerning time periods in this respect.

8. Conversely, when the request is taken to a court which has its seat in one of the entities which are geographically distinct from the mainland, are deadlines extended for persons who live/reside in one of these entities or for those who live/reside abroad?

Slovenia is a state with a single territory that does not include geographically separate entities. Judicial authority (jurisdiction) applies uniformly throughout the territory of the country. Consequently, there are no particularities concerning time periods in this respect.

9. Are there time limits for appeals specific to certain civil matters?

In civil and commercial procedures, the general time limit for submitting an appeal against a court decision (ruling or judgement), issued at first-instance level, is 15 days from the date of service of the copy thereof, unless another time period is stipulated in the ZPP. In particular, a time period of eight days is stipulated for an appeal in the case of law suits concerning treasury bills or cheques, law suits concerning trespass and law suits of low value; the time limit of eight days also applies to objections against payment orders and to the announcement of an appeal against a judgement in commercial lawsuits of low value or for the issue of a payment order. Special, shorter time periods also apply in the procedure of execution and insurance (Article 9 of the Execution of Judgments in Civil Matters and Insurance of Claims Act) and in the procedure concerning the insolvency and liquidation of economic entities (Article 13 of the Compulsory Settlement, Bankruptcy and Liquidation Act).

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10. Can courts, in an emergency or for any other reason, shorten appearance deadlines or set a particular date for appearance? Conversely, can such periods be extended?

Slovenian law has no special rules on shortening procedural time limits. There is a rule that statutory time limits may not be shortened or extended by courts. The duration of a judicial time limit and deadlines are set by the court on the basis of all the circumstances of the case, where this is stipulated by the law or necessary for the procedure. Where there are justified reasons, the time limit set by a court may be extended on the basis of a proposal that the party must submit before the time limit expires (Article 110 of the ZPP), or the specified deadline may be postponed (Article 115 of the ZPP).

11. When an act intended for a party in a place where he/she would benefit from an extension of a time limit is notified in a place where those who reside there do not benefit from such an extension, does the person lose the benefit of such a time limit?

Slovenian law contains no rules on the right to an extension of a time limit on the basis of the residence of a party in a particular place or a particular area.

12. What are the sanctions in the event of failure to comply with deadlines?

The heaviest penalty for overrunning a deadline is prescription (limitation period), which means that the party loses the right to perform a given procedural action in an effective manner (e.g. to submit an appeal). This effect occurs automatically under the terms of the law itself. If a deadline is overrun, this may also result in the assumption that the party performed the given procedural action (e.g. withdrew the legal action). Finally, even when failure to stick to a deadline has no direct consequences under the law itself, it may nevertheless decisively influence the outcome of the procedure (e.g. a party does not provide the necessary sum of money to cover the foreseen costs for taking evidence that would benefit this party, and the court does not take the evidence as a result).

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13. If the deadline expires, what remedies are available to defaulting parties?

If a party defaults on a deadline for a given procedural action and this results in prescription (the party loses the right to perform the procedural action), the court may permit the party, at its request, to perform this action later (reversion to the previous state of affairs; Articles 116-121 of the ZPP). The conditions for reversion to the previous state of affairs are:

  • that the party failed to comply with the deadline for a justified reason, which is assessed by the court on the basis of all the circumstances of the case;

  • that failure to comply with the deadline had preclusive effect;

  • that the party submits a request for reversion to the previous state of affairs to the court before which the defaulted action should have been performed, within the stipulated time period, which is fifteen days from the day when the reason why the deadline was missed ceased to apply; if the party learned of the default only later, in that case from the day on which it learned of it; and in any event no later than three months from the day of the default, and within thirty days in commercial law suits;

  • that the party also performs the defaulted procedural action at the same time as it submits the request

As a rule, a request for reversion to the previous state of affairs has no impact on the course of proceedings, but the court may decide that the procedure is to be suspended until the decision on the request takes effect. After receiving the request for reversion to the previous state of affairs within the time limit, the court usually sets a date when it will decide on the request. If a reversion to the previous state of affairs is authorised, the procedure reverts to the position it was in before the default, and all decisions issued by the court due to the default are annulled.

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Last update: 08-05-2009

 
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