Summary of governmental actions in light of COVID-19 (as at 16.3.2020)
in light of developments related to the SARS-COV-2 virus (COVID-19), we have prepared a summary of certain actions taken by the competent authorities that may be relevant to businesses and other entities in the current situation.
Temporary prohibition of sale of goods and services to consumers in the Republic of Slovenia
As of 16.3.2020, at 00:00 hours, the Ordinance on the temporary prohibition of sale of goods and services to consumers in the Republic of Slovenia is in force. The Ordinance shall be in force until further notice.
The Ordinance temporary prohibits the sale and offering of goods and servoces directly to consumers in the territory of the republic of Slovenia. Such goods and services include accomodation, catering, sports and recreation, cinema, culture, hairdressers, pedicure, gambling and other similar services.
The following goods/services/activities are not covered by the ordinance and as such permitted:
- Sale of goods and services to consumers remotely (distance sales);
- Sale of food products (including sale of farm products at farms);
- Sale of medical supplies;
- Sale of goods related to garden and farming in stores;
- Famrhouse sales;
- Gas stations;
- Delivery services;
- Tobacco sales and sales of newspapers
- Other services urgently needed to ensure public health and safety;
- Other sales of goods and services to consumers which are indicated as exceptions to the Ordinance by the Government of the republic of Slovenia in other
Prohibition and restriction of public transport
On 16 March 2020, at 00:00 hours, the Order on the temporary prohibition and restriction of public transport of passengers in the Republic of Slovenia entered into force. The Order temporarily prohibits public transportation of passengers in the Republic of Slovenia for the purpose of curbing and controlling the COVID-19 epidemic.
Pursuant to the adopted order, regular passenger transport, special passenger transport, non-scheduled regular passenger transport, occasional passenger transport and public rail passenger transport in domestic and international traffic is prohibited on the territory of the Republic of Slovenia, except for auto-taxi services. Taxis are permitted to operate if the driver of the vehicle, before entering of a new passenger, arranges for proper disinfection of parts of the vehicle that are in regular physical contact with the passenger.
Operation of the courts
As of 16 March 2020 onwards, all courts shall hold hearings and rule only in urgent cases, as provided for by Article 83 of the Courts Act.
All oral hearings scheduled in cases which do not fall within the urgent matters specified in the order, are cancelled.
Except for urgent matters referred to in the order, procedural time limits do not run while these special measures apply, nor will court documents be served. If a court document has been served, the procedural time limits will begin to run on the first day after the special measures cease to apply.
Urgent matters to which these special measures do not apply, are, for example, investigations and trials in criminal cases in which the accused is deprived of liberty or their liberty is restricted, in enforcement proceedings relating to the upbringing and care of children and child support obligations, etc.
The Supreme Court’s order in question affects only procedural time limits, not substantive limitation periods (e.g. deadlines for filing a lawsuit).
Access to court buildings and communication with courts is restricted.
Operation of schools and kindergartens
From 16 March 2020 to 29 March 2020, the Order on the Prohibition of gatherings in Institutions in the Field of Education and gatherings in Universities and Independent Higher Education Institutions is in force.
Pursuant to this order, gatherings in kindergartens and in all stages of the educational process in Slovenia are prohibited.
Educational institutions (kindergartens, primary schools, secondary schools, faculties, etc.) will thus be closed from 16 March 2020 to 29 March 2020.
Border control checks between Slovenia and Italy
As of 11 March 2020, the Order on the conditions of entry into the Republic of Slovenia from the Italian Republic to prevent the spread of SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) is in force.
The Order does not apply to citizens of the Republic of Slovenia, persons with permanent or temporary residence in the Republic of Slovenia and to freight transport, but applies to all other entities and other transport/traffic.
Entry into the Republic of Slovenia is granted to an individual to whom the Order applies if he/she submits proof in Slovenian, English or Italian which is no more than three days old showing negative results for SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) (or even without such proof if his/her body temperature is below 37,5°C and he/she shows no clear signs of upper respiratory tract infection (cough, sneezing, shortness of breath)).
Passenger train traffic between Italy and Slovenia has been suspended.
Entry to Slovenia from Italy is possible at six border crossing points, namely Rateče, Robič, Vrtojba, Fernetiči, Škofije and Krvavi Potok.
Prohibition of gatherings at public events
As of 7 March 2020, the Order on the prohibition of public gatherings at public events in enclosed public places has been in force.
The Order bans gatherings of more than 100 people at public events enclosed (indoor) public places in the Republic of Slovenia. The ban will apply as long as the risk of spread of the contagious SARS-CoV-2 disease (COVID 19) exists.
An individual (participant of the event) who violates the Order will be fined with between 41,73 EUR and 417,29 EUR. For the organizer who violates the Order, a fine between EUR 2,086.46 and EUR 6,259.39 is foreseen, as well as an inspection measure banning the performance of the event.
Proposal of a new intervention Act (not yet adopted by the National Assembly)
The Government proposed to the National Assembly that the Emergency Measure of Partial Reimbursement of Wages Act be adopted.
The purpose of the Act is to contribute to the retention of jobs in companies operating in the affected industries, which will be achieved by a measure of partial reimbursement of wages paid to employees by employers who are temporarily unable to provide work and who meet the conditions laid down in the intervention Act.
Under the intervention Act, the state will help employers in two cases:
EXAMPLE 1: When the employer is unable to provide work for at least 30% of the employees at the same time due to his/her poor business situation, such employees will temporarily be laid-off (in Slovene: čakanje na delo). During this time, employees will be entitled to a wage compensation of 80% of the wage base. The obligation will be partially covered by the employer and partially by the state – the employer will cover 60% of the wage compensation, the state will cover 40%.
EXAMPLE 2: When an employee is in quarantine (which was declared by the Minister of Health) and is therefore unable to work. In this case as well, he/she will be entitled to a wage compensation of 80% of the wage base. In such case, the Republic of Slovenia will bear the full burden of the compensation for the quarantined period.
A period of partial reimbursement of wages for temporarily being laid-off may last for a maximum of three months or for the quarantine period.
The conditions for claiming a partial reimbursement of wages for an employer are as follows:
- the employer has to provide a description of the business situation;
- the employer has to demonstrate, on the basis of the description of his/her business situation, that he/she is temporarily unable to provide work for at least 30% of employees at the same time;
- the employer has to make a written undertaking to keep employing such employees who are temporarily laid-off for at least six months after the start of the temporary lay-off period.
SID Bank actions
In cooperation with the Ministry of Economic Development and Technology, SID Bank will offer financial products totalling 800 million EUR to small and medium-sized companies (SMEs) and large companies, of which 200 million EUR worth are new or customized personalized products and 600 million EUR worth are existing products.
Financial products will be available to the market from April 2020 onwards.
The funds will be used to solve liquidity problems of companies (in terms of supply of services and products, reduced demand, downtime, problems in supply chains, problems with investments, including in the form of collateral and refinancing of loans taken from banks).
In particular, SID Bank will cover the loan segment from 100,000.00 EUR to 7 million EUR, with some existing programs up to 20 million EUR.
SID Bank will also adjust the assessment of the treatment of existing clients facing the consequences of coronavirus (e.g. financial commitments, insurance, moratoriums, demonstration of eligibility of financing purposes, etc.).
At the same time, SID Bank is preparing portfolio guarantees to improve access to financing for companies, thus providing primary coverage for the risk of credit losses.
Provision of preventive health services
As of 11 March 2020, the Order on interim measures for the control of the spread of infectious disease SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) is in force.
The provision of preventive health services by all healthcare providers within the public health service network shall be terminated, with the exception of preventive health services, the omission of which could have adverse effects on the patient’s health.
In some hospitals (Novo mesto) and health centers (Novo mesto, Črnomelj), emergency medical examinations and interventions will cease until 25 March 2020, and only administrative medical assistance will be performed at Metlika Health Center at least until 25 March 2020.
* * *
Our law firm is actively following the latest COVID-19 developments. As always, you can contact us via e-mail or telephone +386 (0)1 2445500, or you can directly contact the lawyer you are generally in contact with.
Law Firm Kavčič, Bračun & Partners, o.p., d.o.o.
Ljubljana, 16 March 2020
All information contained herein is obtained from publicly available data or other sources believed to be reliable. This document is for general information purposes only, may be subject to change and may not be used instead of a legal opinion/advice. KBP does not guarantee the accuracy of the information and shall not be liable for any damages or costs in connection with the use of, or reliance on, the information contained herein.