COVID 19 - Suspension of Procedural Deadlines

New BACK

Due to the issuance of Decree No. 260/2020 and the pandemic declared by the WHO in relation to COVID-19, several public agencies have issued measures aimed at suspending procedural deadlines and / or mediations and adopting new customer service schemes. Here is a summary of the main ones.

Judicial procedures and mediations

On 16 March 2020 the National Supreme Court –the highest Court in the Country- declared non-working days for all ongoing proceedings before national and federal Courts as from that date until 31 March 2020.

The decision was adopted through Resolution (“Acordada”) No. 4/2020, which also ordered to (i) keep minimum services through a small group of judges, Secretariats and officials, (ii) let the Courts declare working days in case of urgencies, (iii) implement electronic filings for such cases and (iv) suspend the attention of the public, except when the presence of attorneys and/or their parties is essential.

Please refer to Acordada No. 4/2020

Similar decisions were adopted by all provinces at their local levels.

In addition, through Acordada No. 6/2020 the Supreme Court imposed an extraordinary judicial recess from March 20 to March 31 in all federal and national courts and other court offices The Court also decided to minimize the attendance of staff and entrust the same the unlimited attention of (i) criminal matters related to the deprivation of liberty of individuals, urban and domestic violence, crimes against public health, migratory crimes, interruption of communications, crimes related with the exploitation of the emergency situation, habeas corpus, crimes against physical and sexual integrity, public security and public order; and (ii) non-criminal issues related to urgent family matters, child protection, gender violence and shelters, particularly those related to health issues. Likewise, through Acordada No. 7/2020 it established opening hours for judicial recess’ courts from Monday to Friday from 09:30 am to 1:30 pm.

See Acordada No. 6 and Acordada No.7.

Through Resolution No. 106 of March 18, 2020, the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights ordered the suspension of mediation hearings under Law No. 26,589 from March 16 to March 31, without prejudice to the validity of the acts carried out as of the date of publication of the resolution.

See Resolution No. 106/2020

Should you need further information, do not hesitate to contact Martín Torres Girotti and/or Melisa Romero.

Administrative proceedings. Public service schemes.

Decree 298/2020, published on March 20, 2020, suspended the current deadlines for administrative procedures established by the National Law of Administrative Procedures No. 19,549, the Regulation of Administrative Procedures (Decree 1759/72, as updated in 2017) and other special procedures, from the date of publication of the Decree until March 31, 2020, without prejudice to the validity of the acts carried out or that may be carried out.

All administrative procedures related to the emergency declared by Law No. 27,541, expanded by Decree No. 260 of March 12, 2020, and its amending and complementary regulations, are exempted from this suspension.

Likewise, jurisdictions, entities and agencies contemplated in section 8 of the Law of Financial Administration and Control Systems of the National Public Sector No. 24,156 and its amendments are empowered to provide additional exemptions, in the scope of their powers, to the planned suspension.

See Decree 298/2020

For more information do not hesitate to contact María Inés Corra and Cecilia Garibotti

 

Public Revenue Federal Administration (AFIP)

The agency informed that it will only respond to public enquiries in case of appointments scheduled through its website, thus minimizing public concentration in its agencies.

Likewise, it suspended the possibility of conducting in person a series of procedures, which until March 31 will only be possible through digital presentations. Taxpayers will be able to channel queries through the Call Center, website and e-mail.

These measures are added to the Extraordinary Recess declared by General Resolution No. 4682/2020 from March 18 to March 31, both inclusive.

(See Resolution No. 4682/2020).

For more information do not hesitate to contact Ariadna Artopoulos and Alejandro Messineo.

 

National Social Security Administration (ANSES)

Through its website, it reported that in the framework of the health emergency all assigned appointments were rescheduled starting on April 17th, as well as the automatic extension of the deadlines for the submission of documents. Payment dates are not modified.

For more information do not hesitate to contact Esteban Carcavallo and Edgardo Isola.

Buenos Aires Company’s House

General Resolution No. 10/2020 of the Buenos Aires Company’s House, published on March 18 2020 in the Official Gazette, established the suspension of the deadlines to answer requests for information and notices sent by said agency, as well as the deadline to comply with the information regimes required to capitalization and savings companies, from March 16 to March 30, 2020.

Should you need further information, do not hesitate to contact Patricio A. Martin, Florencia Pagani or Lucila Primogerio.

Antitrust – Consumer Protection - Fair Trade

Resolution No. 98/2020 of the Secretary of Domestic Trade of the Ministry of Productive Development, published in the Official Gazette on March 19, established the suspension of all procedural terms of all ongoing proceedings under Laws No. 19,511 (Metrology), 22,802 (Fair Trade- abrogated by Section 72 of Decree 274/2019), 24,240 (Consumer Protection), 25,156 (Antitrust – abrogated by Section 80 of Law 27,442), 26,993 (Conflict Resolution System for Consumer Relations), and 27,442 (Antitrust), and their amending and supplementary provisions, and Decree 274/2019 (Fair Trade), for the period comprised from March 16, 2020 to March 31, 2020.

During the indicated period:

i)                 minimum staff assistance and services shall be available, which will be limited only to address urgent matters;

ii)               the entrance desk of the National Antitrust Commission will be closed; however, urgent presentations may be filed from Monday to Friday 9:30 a.m.- 1:30 p.m. via e-mail to the address [email protected] For further information on this means of presentation, please refer to the information available on the CNDC’s website.

iii)              the holding of hearings within the scope of the Directorate of Prior Conciliation in Consumer Relations Service (Dirección de Servicio de Conciliaciones Previas en las Relaciones de Consumo) is suspended, without prejudice of the validity of the acts that may take place during the aforementioned period, whether in person, remotely or by electronic means; and

iv)                 the entrance desk of the Directorate of Prior Conciliation in Consumer Relations Service will have, during the referred period, a minimum emergency watch from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., for the purpose of dealing with urgent matters.

 

Should you need further information, do not hesitate to contact Marcelo den Toom and/or Gabriela Castillo Areco.

National Gas Regulator (ENARGAS)

Resolution No. 99 of March 17, 2020 declared the ten business days following the issuance of the Resolution as non-working, only as regards the calculation of procedural deadlines. Through Resolution 1/2020 dated March 20, 2020, the agency decided to suspend customer services, including Entrance Desk, Regional Centers and Service of Queries and Claims for domestic and automotive natural gas issues until April 3, 2020 or as long as it may be established by national authorities.

Likewise, licensees of gas transportation and distribution services through networks, as well as sub-distributors, shall provide a valid e-mail address for all notifications made by the agency within the framework of this measure to [email protected] and [email protected], within two calendar days from the publication of the Resolution.

Please refer to Resolution 99/2020 and Resolution 1/2020

 

In addition ENRGAS set up a Virtual Office (https://m.enargas.gov.ar) to make inquiries or claims, in addition to the various telephone or email service channels (CNG vehicle users: [email protected] and users of natural gas through networks: [email protected]).

For more information do not hesitate to contact María Inés Corra and Cecilia Garibotti

 

National Electricity Regulator (ENRE)

Through its web platform, it made available two online forms for customer service. The first allows the uploading of claims for deficiencies in the EDENOR and EDESUR service (claim form) and the second, the sending of documentation associated with the completion of procedures at the Entrance Desk of the agency (Entry Desk form). It also arranged for the Customer Service office be open only to users with prior appointment.

For more information do not hesitate to contact María Inés Corra and Cecilia Garibotti.