Amendments to the Public Procurement Act

European legislation in December 2013 established new rules for agricultural markets organization. As a result, the competitiveness within the European Union of Slovak beekeepers, winegrowers, fruit, vegetable and wine producers decreased, since, contrary to the neighboring EU member states, the provisions of the Public Procurement Act apply to these producers. Consequently, they would not be able to use subsidies from EU funds as much as they could before. In reaction to these new European rules, the National Council adopted an amendment to the Public Procurement Act, according to which contracts within the framework of the common organization of agricultural markets will not be governed by the Public Procurement Act.
The amendment makes further possible cancelling the chosen procedure of awarding a contract if the circumstances, under which the public procurement was initiated, have changed, i.e. if during the procurement procedure such reasons of special interest occur that it cannot be requested from the public contractor to continue the public procurement under the initially chosen procedure (in particular if violations of the Public Procurement Act that have or could have major impact on the outcome of the public procurement occurred; formal violations or violations that can be removed do not permit applying the new rule).

New financial limits for the above-the-limit contracts

The Public Procurement Office issued a regulation setting limits for above-the-limit public contracts. In comparison with the previously applicable limits, the new limits are increased by approximately three per cent.

Case law

The Supreme Court of the Slovak republic confirmed that parties to a lease contract of non-residential premises may agree on rescission of the contract due to failure to pay the rent. Prior to this decision, it was unclear whether it is possible to validly rescind the lease contract of non-residential premises, since the law does explicitly provide for only the possibility to terminate the lease by termination notice. On the basis of the contractual freedom principle, the Supreme Court ruled that there exist no reasons to exclude the possibility to agree also on rescission of the lease contract in the case of non-payment. This decision unifies the conflicting case law of lower courts and brings certainty to the contractual relationships between landlords and tenants. 

(According to Resolution of the Supreme Court of the Slovak Republic, dated 28 November 2012, file number 2 Cdo 216/2011)

If the ownership to a property was acquired in voluntary auction from a non-owner, the successful bidder does not automatically acquire the ownership of the property by paying the price. The Supreme Court of the Slovak republic ruled that the principle according to which nobody can transfer to another more rights than he actually possesses is to be observed also in relation to voluntary auctions. Consequently, ownership cannot be acquired by means of a voluntary auction if it turns out that the seller was not the owner of the property. This conclusion applies even if the successful bidder paid the auction price and no action for invalidity of the auction was brought to the court within the prescribed period. Following this decision, acquisition of the ownership on the basis of voluntary auctions becomes riskier and bidders should be more cautious about acquiring ownership by means of voluntary auctions. 

(According to resolution of the Supreme Court of the Slovak Republic, dated 18 December 2012, file number 2 MCdo 20/2011)