Law amended: NO apartment SEIZURE for debts up to EUR 5,000 – except in two cases
Natalija Solic of Yucom has talked about the amendments to the Law on Execution and the main novelty will be the recognition of the right to home, so debtors who owe up to EUR 5,000 will no longer lose their real estate, if it is the only one they have. However, she points out that there are two exceptions. “Now, enforcement officers have an obligation, instead of being given a possibility, to evaluate whether the property that the debtor has is disproportionately high in relation to his/her debt. If the debtor has a property whose market value is about, for example, EUR 80,000, and he has a debt for utilities and similar services of, for instance, EUR 1,000 or up to EUR 5,000, since the law also makes restrictions there, the enforcement officer must evaluate whether it is proportionate to determine the sale of the real estate to settle such a low debt,” she said. In relation to this principle of proportionality, says Solic, for the first time, the right to home is recognized. “A restriction is thus determined stipulating that all debtors who owe a certain amount of money up to 5,000 euros for utilities and similar services cannot lose their real estate, if it is the only real estate they have.” However, she points out that this principle is not absolute, that is, there are two exceptions: in the first scenario, a debtor can give consent in a statement certified by a public notary to settling the debt by the sale of his only real estate, and the second scenario is that upon the application of the principles of proportionality it can be established that there is “only one item and one means of enforcement, and that the debt cannot be otherwise settled”. This means that in this situation a debtor has no income or any other property he could sell and thus pay off the debt.