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Health Act Amendments Pass on Second Reading

The fines for violating anti-epidemic measures and for non-compliance with the quarantine remain unchanged even after the end of the state of emergency on May 13. This was decided when Parliament adopted amendments to the Health Act on second reading Tuesday.

The legislature included patients and carriers of COVID-19 on the list for compulsory isolation and/or hospital treatment.

Per the new amendments, an epidemic emergency situation may be declared for a certain period of time by a decision of the Council of Ministers on the proposal of the Health Minister and on the basis of an assessment of existing epidemic risk performed by the Chief State Health Inspector.

It is explicitly stated in the texts that anti-epidemic measures  may not include a ban on entry of citizens of other countries in Bulgaria or a temporary restriction on movement within the country.

Orders by the Health Minister and by directors of respective regional health inspectorates for the introduction of anti-epidemic measures will be subject to appeal before the respective administrative court in keeping with the Administrative Procedure Code.

As before, violators who do not comply with the introduced anti-epidemic measures will be fined between 300 and 1,000 leva.  In case of repeated violation, the fine will be between 1,000 and 2,000 leva. A person suffering from a contagious disease, as  well as a contagious carrier, who refuses or does not fulfill
the obligatory isolation and/or treatment, will be subjected to a fine in the amount of 5,000 leva.

A contact person of a patient with a contagious disease, as well  as a person who has entered Bulgaria from other countries, who refuses or does not fulfill the obligatory quarantine, will also  be subjected to a 5,000 leva fine.

The duration of most of the social and economic measures introduced during the state of emergency will be extended by up to two months.

Any public sales or entry-into-possession procedures launched by  state or private enforcement agents against natural persons will be cancelled for a period of two months after the end of the state of emergency. Subsequently, such procedures may be relaunched, with no fees owed by the natural persons concerned.

Distraints may not be imposed on municipal bank accounts for two  months after the end of the state of emergency.

Over the same period of time, if a private individual who has borrowed money or is using some other form of financing has delayed their payments, there may be no early claim on all the money provided to that individual, and the respective contract may not be spoiled due to non-fulfillment. The measure does not
apply to legal entities.

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