Law on Normative Acts (1973, amended 1995)

Untitled Document

REPUBLIC OF BULGARIA
NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

LAW ON NORMATIVE ACTS

Promulgated State Gazette No. 27/03.04.1973

Amended SG No. 65/1995

Chapter One

GENERAL

Article 1

The objectives of this Law shall be to improve the preparation, issue and implementation of normative acts, so that the legislation could serve with better success to the development of socialist democracy and the development of a mature socialist society.

Article 2

(1) Normative acts may be issued only by the bodies stipulated in the Constitution, in another law or in a State Council decree.

(2) The authority to issue a normative act may not be transferred.

Article 3

(1) Within the subject matter it governs, a law shall provide full regulation of all principal social relations subject to permanent regulation.

(2) A law may provide for the issue of executive acts to govern other relations within that subject matter.

Article 4

(1) Social relations subject to an entire branch of the legal system or to a separate substantial division thereof, shall be governed by Codes.

(2) The provisions of this Law applicable to laws shall also apply to Codes.

Article 5

All bodies entitled to legislative initiative shall also be entitled to initiate the issue of normative decrees.

Article 6

The Council of Minister shall issue ordinances:

    1. to approve rules, regulations or directives;

    2. to govern in compliance with laws and decrees social relations within its executive and administrative powers which are not governed by such laws and decrees.

Article 7

(1) Rules shall be issued to implement laws or decrees in their entirety, for organization of Government and local bodies or for by-laws governing their activities.

(2) Regulations shall be issued for the implementation of individual provisions or other sections of superior normative acts.

(3) Directives shall be issued by a superior body to a subordinate body, providing instructions on the implementation of a normative act which was issued by the former or the implementation of which must be ensured by it.

Article 8

All Municipal Councils may issue regulations to govern in compliance with superior normative acts social relations of local importance not settled thereby.

Article 9

(1) Provisions of normative acts shall be formulated briefly, precisely and clearly in the Bulgarian language as generally used.

(2) The structure of normative acts and the formulation of provisions therein must be in compliance with the decree to implement this Law.

Article 10

(1) Social relations within one and the same sphere shall be regulated by one, rather than by several normative acts of the same rank.

(2) Social relations that belong to a sphere for which a normative act has already been issued, shall be governed by additions and amendments, rather than by separate act of the same rank.

Article 11

(1) The repeal of a law and the replacement thereof by a new one referring to the same subject matter, shall be allowed only where the amendments are numerous and substantial.

(2) Where certain matters are governed by general provisions, a special act may provide deviations from them only where necessary in view of the nature of the social relations governed by such an act.

(3) Normative acts shall be repealed, amended or supplemented by explicit provisions of the new amending or supplementing act.

Article 12

Acts to implement laws may regulate only the subject matter for which it is provided that they may be issued.

Article 13

(1) An act to implement a law shall cease to be in force wholly or in part concurrently with the repeal of the law, wholly or in part respectively, in accordance with the scope of the repeal.

(2) The new law may provide that all or some of the provisions of the act to implement the repealed law remain in force temporarily, provided they are in compliance with the provisions of the new law.

Article 14

(1) Normative acts may be retroactive only by exception, on the grounds of an explicit provision.

(2) A normative act issued pursuant to another normative act, may be retroactive only provided the act pursuant to which it has been issued is retroactive.

(3) Retroactivity may not be granted to provisions for sanctions, unless they are less severe than those repealed.

Article 15

(1) Normative acts must be in compliance with the Constitution and the superior normative acts.

(2) Where ordinances, rules, regulations or directives contravene superior normative acts, the law enforcement authorities shall apply the superior acts.

Article 16

(1) The state bodies must inform the body authorized to repeal a normative act of the inconsistencies between such an act and a superior act.

(2) Within the authority vested in him by the Constitution, the Prosecutor General shall submit a protest for repeal of normative acts or specific provisions, should they be contrary to superior normative acts.

Article 17

(1) Following the entry into force of a normative act, the results of its implementation shall be reviewed.

(2) Based on such review proposals shall be made for repeal, amendment or supplement of the normative act, where necessary.

Article 18

(1) State bodies, socialist organizations and individuals may submit proposals for improvement of legislation.

(2) Proposals shall be addressed to the bodies authorized to issue a normative act, or to the respective bodies entitled to legislative initiative.

Chapter Two

PLANNING OF BILLS

Article 19

(1) The drawing up of bills and their submission to the National Assembly shall be planned.

(2) Standing Committees of the National Assembly and members of Parliament may submit to the National Assembly bills not included in the plan as well.

Article 20

(1) The State Council shall prepare a long-term and a current plan for bills.

(2) Planning proposals shall be made by bodies entitled to legislative initiative. Proposals shall be preceded by studies of the necessity for such bills.

(3) Plans shall be prepared, and proposals made, in compliance with the decree to implement this Law.

Article 21

Prior to including bills in the plan the State Council may:

    1. request further studies or demand further considerations of the necessity for proposed bills;

    2. invite the bodies that have put forward separate proposals for one and the same bill, to propose it jointly;

    3. invite the body that has proposed separate bills referring to social relations belonging to the same sphere, to combine them in one proposal for an overall bill;

    4. invite the body that has proposed a new bill, to replace it with a proposal to amend or supplement an existing act.

Article 22

(1) The State Council shall set out in a statement the reasons for not including a bill in the plan, and shall send it to the body that has made the proposal.

(2) Should a bill be proposed again, it shall be included in the plan.

Article 23

(1) Should it be established that the proposals made do not satisfy all legislative needs, the State Council shall plan the necessary bills.

(2) Such bills shall be submitted to the National Assembly by the State Council, unless the latter has proposed and the Council of Ministers or another body entitled to legislative initiative have accepted to be sponsors of the bills.

Article 24

(1) Bills included in the plan may be withdrawn by the bodies that have proposed them.

(2) The State Council may keep a withdrawn bill in the plan, should it find that necessary. Article 23, para (2) shall apply to the submission of such a bill to the National Assembly.

Article 25

(1) The Council of Ministers shall make its own plan for preparation of bills to be submitted thereby, as well as for normative acts on their implementation that it should issue, in compliance with the plan for bills approved by the State Council.

(2) All ministers or other agency heads shall prepare plans for normative acts to be issued by them on the implementation of planned bills.

Chapter Three

PREPARATION OF BILLS

Article 26

(1) The body that has made a proposal for planning shall be responsible for the preparation of the respective bill.

(2) A minister or other agency head assigned by the Council of Ministers shall be responsible for preparation of bills planned by a proposal of the Council of Ministers.

(3) The rules of the preceding paragraphs shall also apply to bills under Article 23, para (2) and Article 24, para (2).

Article 27

The body responsible for preparation of a bill shall determine the compiler of the bill.

Article 28

Bills shall be prepared pursuant to this Law and the decree on its implementation. The bill shall have reasons attached thereto.

Article 29

(1) The bill as prepared shall be sent to the Council of Ministers, provided the Council of Ministers is the sponsor of that bill.

(2) Depending on the state of a bill, the Chairman of the Council of Ministers shall turn it back for redrafting or shall send it to the Legislative Council for a position on the principal provisions and the compliance of the bill with this Law and the decree on its implementation.

Article 30

Following the receipt of the position of the Legislative Council, the Chairman of the Council of Ministers shall submit the bill for consideration by the Council of Ministers or turn it back for redrafting. Bills approved by the Council of Ministers shall be submitted to the National Assembly.

Article 31

Following the receipt of the position of the Legislative Council, other bodies entitled to legislative initiative, apart from the Standing Committees of the National Assembly and the members of Parliament, shall submit the respective bill to the National Assembly, provided it has not been turned back for redrafting.

Article 32

The provisions of Articles 27 and 28 shall also apply to the preparation of drafts for normative decrees, unless where by discretion of the sponsor of the decree these rules should not necessarily be applied wholly or in part, considering the subject of the decree or its urgency. Regardless of the circumstances, all drafts should have reasons attached thereto.

Article 33

Following the receipt of draft normative decrees, the Chairman of the State Council shall submit them for consideration to the State Council or turn them back for redrafting to the respective propositioning bodies.

Chapter Four

CERTIFICATION AND PROMULGATION OF NORMATIVE ACTS

Article 34

(1) The texts of normative acts and their adoption shall be duly certified as follows:

    1. Laws - by the Chairman of the National Assembly;

    2. Decrees - by the Chairman of the State Council;

    3. Ordinances - by the Chairman of the Council of Ministers;

    4. Other normative acts - by the issuing body, and its Chairman respectively, in the case of collective body.

(2) The certification shall be subsigned by the secretaries of the State Council, the Council of Ministers and the Executive Board of the People's Council, respectively.

Article 35

Certification shall be applied to the document containing the text of the normative act, immediately after the text.

Article 36

(1) Certified texts of normative acts shall be considered original. All other texts shall be considered transcripts.

(2) Certified texts shall be kept by the respective issuing bodies.

(3) Discrepancies between certified texts and approved texts of normative acts shall be corrected by the respective certifying bodies.

Article 37

(1) Laws, decrees, ordinances of the Council of Ministers and normative acts of ministers and other agency heads shall be promulgated in the State Gazette.

(2) Normative acts of People's Councils shall be promulgated in the press or notified by other means in the region of the respective Council.

Article 38

A normative act shall be promulgated within one issue of the State Gazette.

Article 39

(1) Orders for promulgation shall be issued as follows:

    1. for acts and decrees - by the Chairman of the State Council;

    2. for ordinances - by the Chairman of the Council of Ministers;

    3. for other normative acts - by the respective issuing body, and by the respective Chairman in the case of collective body.

(2) A certified transcript of the original normative act shall be attached to the order.

Article 40

(1) The promulgation must reproduce literally the text of the normative act's certified transcript.

(2) Should prior to the promulgation errors be established in the text sent for promulgation, they shall be corrected by the body that has certified the normative act.

Article 41

(1) The promulgation shall be considered effected on the date indicated as publication date of the respective issue of the State Gazette.

(2) Publication date of the State Gazette shall be the date on which the distribution of the respective issue may begin.

(3) Where a normative act is considered to come into force following a certain period of time after the promulgation, the promulgation date shall be excluded from that period.

(4) The period of time shall expire at 24:00 hrs on the last date.

Article 42

(1) Discrepancies between promulgated texts and transcripts sent for promulgation shall be corrected under the promulgation procedure.

(2) Discrepancies between texts sent for promulgation and promulgated texts and certified or adopted texts shall be established by the respective certifying body, and shall be corrected under the promulgation procedure.

Article 43

(1) Corrections shall be made immediately upon establishment of discrepancies.

(2) Texts of corrections must be formulated so as to indicate clearly and precisely both the discrepancies and the correct texts.

Article 44

Corrections shall enter into force under the same procedure and within the same period of time applicable to corrected normative acts. Such period of time shall always be three days, provided the term for entry into force of the respective normative act is longer.

Article 45

(1) Acts of individuals or legal persons performed in compliance with a promulgated text prior to entry into force of corrections thereof, shall be considered lawful and valid respectively, unless an error was apparent.

(2) Following the entry into force of corrections, acts of state bodies based on the wrong text shall be subject to repeal under the procedure provided by law, should they be unlawful considering the correct text. This rule shall not apply where a repeal may result in liability incompatible with the preceding paragraph, or in infringement of rights attained in compliance with it.

Chapter Five

INTERPRETATION OF NORMATIVE ACTS

Article 46

(1) Provisions of normative acts shall be applied pursuant to their exact meaning; should they be not clear, they shall be interpreted in the meaning closest to other provisions, to the purposes of the act interpreted, to the general principles of the legal system of the People's Republic of Bulgaria and the rules of socialist ethics.

(2) Where a normative act is incomplete, cases not regulated by it shall be subject to the provisions applicable to similar cases, provided that is in compliance with the objectives of the act and the rules of socialist ethics. Should such provisions be missing, relations shall be settled in

compliance with the general principles of the legal system of the People's Republic of Bulgaria and the rules of socialist ethics.

(3) Penal, administrative and disciplinary liability may not be justified pursuant to the preceding paragraph.

Article 47

The State Council may interpret acts or normative decrees upon its own initiative or by request.

Article 48

(1) Requests for interpretation may be placed by the Chairman of the National Assembly, the Chairman of the Council of Ministers, ministers, heads of other agencies equal in rank to ministries, the Chairman of the Supreme Court, the Prosecutor General, Chairmen of Executive Boards of District People's Councils, as well as central managements of public organizations, on matters within their scope of activity.

(2) Individuals shall send their requests for interpretation to the Prosecutor General; state bodies and legal persons -- to the respective managing or supervising body, or to the central management of the union of which they are members.

Article 49

(1) The State Council shall provide interpretations by decree and shall deny requests by decision.

(2) Decrees shall be promulgated in the State Gazette. Promulgated interpretations shall be binding for all.

Article 50

(1) Interpretations shall be considered effective as from the date of entry into force of the respective interpreted act.

(2) The State Council may by exception provide interpretation with henceforth validity only, should the retroactive validity be considered a possible cause for complications. In such case the interpretation shall come into force within three days following the promulgation.

Article 51

(1) A binding interpretation of executive orders shall be provided by the respective issuing body.

(2) Interpretations shall be promulgated or notified under the procedure for promulgation or notification of the act interpreted. Article 50 shall apply to the effect of interpretations.

TRANSITIONAL AND CONCLUDING PROVISIONS

§ 1. The provisions of Chapter Two of this Law shall apply to all bills not prepared yet.

§ 2. (1) Article 29, para (2), and Article 30 shall apply to bills that have not been approved by the Council of Ministers by the time of entry into force of this Law.

(2) Article 31 shall apply to bills prepared by other bodies entitled to legislative initiative, provided such bills have not been submitted to the National Assembly prior to the entry into force of this Law.

§ 3. All prepared normative act drafts, except those already submitted to the National Assembly, shall be redrafted pursuant to the provisions of this Law and the decree on its application.

§ 4. Article 2 of the Obligations and Contracts Act shall be hereby repealed.

§ 5. Unless otherwise provided by this Law, it shall apply to all normative acts issued by bodies stipulated by the Constitution. Articles 2, 9 through 17, 34 through 46 and 51, respectively, shall apply to other normative acts.

§ 6. Chapters Two and Three of this Law shall not apply to bills on the budget and on the social and economic development of this country.

§ 7. The implementation of this Law is assigned to the State Council, and it shall issue a decree on its implementation.