Brief review of the amendments of the Code of Civil Procedure adopted by the Law on amendment and supplementation of the Code of Civil Procedure promulgated in State Gazette issue No. 86 dated October 27th 2017.

The amendments performed with the Law on amendment and supplementation of the Code of Civil Procedure entering into force on October 31st 2017, are substantial and concern the service of documents and notifications, the state fees due in the general and the forced execution proceedure. In addition, significant reforms are made in the forced execution procedure.

In art. 47 CPC are adopted amendments related with the service of documents and notifications to the defendant, where an obligation is introduced for at least three visits of defendants’ address, as one of the visits should be on a holyday. In addition, the ex officio principle is lead into the determination of the address of the defendant. Service at the place of work, the place of service and the place of performing business activity on part of the defendant is also stipulated.

Substantial amendments are adopted with regard to the state fees due when claims are joint, as well as in relation with the fees due in the forced execution process.

With view to the number of forced execution proceedings initiated against debtors willing to pay their dues adjudged with an entered into force decision or grounded on an execution order, but unable to perform them due the lack of information about creditors’ bank account or another manner for performance, amendments to art.  127, art. 236, art. 410 para 2 and art. 412 CPC were enforced,  which introduce a binding requisite of the claim, relevantly the application for issuance of a payment order, of the court decision and the order for execution, namely: a bank account to which the adjudged amounts could be wired or another manner of payment.

In the payment order procedure was stipulated that in case of payment within the term of voluntary payment, when the debtors that have performed partially or in whole within the term of volunatary performance given in the order for payment, the debtors are entitled to submit an objection accompanied with a proof for the performance. An opportunity is envisaged for submission of an objection with regards to the expenses if the debtor has not given ground for claiming of the receivable.

Numerous are the amendments adopted in the forced execution procedure referring to: local jurisdiction for initiation of forced execution cases, the opportunities for appealing against the actions of the forces execution agents, the fees payable in the forced execution proceeding, determination of the initial price for a public sale etc. Newly introduced is the principle for proportionality of the securing measures and the forced execution methods, as in case non-observance of the same, the liability of the forced execution agents under art. 441 CPC is extended.

With view to the wider application of the electronic documents and electronic signatures was regulated the opportunity for making of electronic attachment of a receivable from a bank account, as well as undertaking of electronic public auction.

Amendments were adopted in relation with the forced execution against securities owned by the debtor, which are supposed to lead to a broadened application of this method of forced execution. The existing regulation led to impossibility for execution against personal securities, as the annulment of securities under art. 560 CPC was not applicable for personal securities.

In art. 517а is stipulated a possibility for a forced execution against separated part of an enterprise, and in art. 518а was regulated enforcement with respect to industrial property of the debtor. With the introduction of those institutes were closed gaps in the Bulgarian legislation in force.

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