Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.
Factsheet for measure SI-2020-11/481 – Updated – measures in Slovenia
|Country||Slovenia , applies nationwide|
|Time period||Temporary, 13 March 2020 – 30 September 2021|
|Type||Legislations or other statutory regulations|
Supporting businesses to stay afloat
– Rescue procedures in case of insolvency or adaptation of insolvency regulation
|Author||Maja Breznik (University of Ljubljana) and Eurofound|
|Measure added||11 April 2020 (updated 31 January 2022)|
The first and second COVID-19 law (ZIUZEOP and ZIUZEOP-A) introduce some changes in insolvency proceedings and compulsory dissolution. The measure aims at protecting companies from bankruptcies due to negative consequences of the epidemic. The management can abstain from the duty to start the compulsory settlement or bankruptcy until 31 August if the company became insolvent because of the epidemic. When a creditor files for a bankruptcy proceeding over a debtor, the debtor will have 4 months instead of current 2 months for financial restructuring to prevent bankruptcy. Extensions will be applicable to bankruptcy proceedings, filed for by creditors until 31 August 2020. Other changes tackle compensation of unpaid wages from the Guarantee Fund, personal bankruptcy procedures, and enforcement proceedings.
Deferred compulsory settlement or bankruptcy means that management is not obliged to start this procedure during the period of epidemic and the three succeeding months (until 31 August). The management can abstain from the duty if the company becomes insolvent due to the state, ministry or local authority’s ban on production or trade or if company was solvent on 31 December 2020.
On the other hand, the law reinforces some workers’ rights. Workers can have easier access to reimbursements of the Public Scholarship, Development, Disability and Maintenance Fund of the Republic of Slovenia (Guarantee Fund) for unpaid wages in the last three months, unpaid sick leave, annual leave and severance payment. Employees are entitled to compensation from the Guarantee Fund if they filed for a bankruptcy proceeding. This rule is valid until 30 June 2020. From July 2020, workers again needs court’s final decision in a bankruptcy proceeding to get access to the Guarantee Fund. Employees may have also easier access to the Guarantee Fund if they have not received wage compensations one month from the time the state paid reimbursements to their employers. In these cases, the employer is presumed no longer solvent (presumption is valid until September 2020) and employees may file for a bankruptcy proceeding. If they do so, they are exempt from paying the advance for costs of a bankruptcy proceeding.
As for personal bankruptcy and enforcement, the law stipulates that payments under emergency laws are not the object of personal bankruptcy and enforcement. Exceptions are made for wage compensation.
Finally, during the COVID-19 epidemic the enforcement proceedings are temporarily suspended. Exemptions are enforcement based on a claim for legal alimony and other urgent matters, determined by the court.
The following updates to this measure have been made after it came into effect.
|24 June 2021||
The government extended the deferred compulsory settlement or bankruptcy to 30 September 2021 ( Decision on prolonging the measures in the field of insolvency proceedings ), adopted on 24 June 2020)
|24 March 2021||
The government extended the deferred compulsory settlement or bankruptcy to 30 June 2021
|29 December 2020||
The seventh COVID-19 law (ZIUPOPDVE), adopted by the Parliament on 29 December 2020, allowed management to abstain from the duty to start the compulsory settlement or bankruptcy until 31 March 2021 if the company became insolvent due to the epidemic or if it was solvent on 31 December 2019. Deadlines for fulfilling management obligations expire one month after the end of the epidemic. Until 31 March, when a creditor files for a bankruptcy proceeding over a debtor, the debtor has four months instead of current two months for financial restructuring to prevent bankruptcy. The measure can be prolonged for another six months upon the government’s ordinance.
|02 July 2020||
The second COVID-19 law (ZIUZEOP-A) redefines companies which can abstain from some duties concerning compulsory settlement or bankruptcy procedure. In this group are now included all the companies solvent on 31 December 2019, not only those performing an activity (sales of goods or services) which has been temporarily prohibited under a decree or act issued by the government, ministry or municipality due to the COVID-19 epidemic. The act prolongs the period from 31 July to 31 August in which debtor has 4 months (usually 2 months) for financial restructuring to prevent bankruptcy.
In personal bankruptcy and enforcement, the law stipulates that wage compensations can be the object of personal bankruptcy and enforcement payments.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, enforcement proceedings are still temporarily suspended. The second emergency act (ZIUZEOP-A) also exempts from the suspension other urgent items, determined by the court, not only claims for legal alimony as before.
Emergency regulation on insolvency curbs the risks of bankruptcies on the one hand, while protects the interests of workers on the other. The exemption of payments under emergency regulation from bankruptcy estate protects persons in the personal bankruptcy procedure.
|Does not apply to workers||Applies to all businesses||Applies to all citizens|
No special funding required
Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:
|Trade unions||Employers' organisations|
|Form||Any other form of consultation, institutionalised (as stable working groups or committees) or informal||Any other form of consultation, institutionalised (as stable working groups or committees) or informal|
Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:
The two COVID-19 laws (ZIUZEOP and ZIUZEOP-A) were adopted under an accelerated procedure with no involvement of the Economic and Social Council. Its functioning was blocked because the new government, which came to power on 13 March 2020, had not appointed its members in the Economic and Social Council. On 20 April, trade unions protested against the exclusion of social partners in the preparation of the second emergency law (ZIUZEOP-A). They demanded the reactivation of the Economic and Social Council. The first meeting of the Economic and Social Council was held not before 15 May 2020. The Council then became involved in negotiations about the third emergency law ZIUOOPE, issued on 30 May 2020
Trade unions and employer organizations have submitted proposals to the law. Employers' organizations had no remarks or proposal linked to this measure. Trade unions were expressing concern all the way that employer can defer bankruptcy procedure for four months, although it does not pay salaries and social security contributions during this period. Their proposals were not taken into consideration.
Eurofound (2020), Deferred compulsory settlement or bankruptcy and other measures, measure SI-2020-11/481 (measures in Slovenia), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin, https://static.eurofound.europa.eu/covid19db/cases/SI-2020-11_481.html
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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.