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Newsletter 2011 April

  • Lithuania
  • Other

15-04-2011

Representation

Regulations on electronic submission of data to the Register of Notarised Powers of Attorney have been approved

Effective as of 1 January 2011, pursuant to the Civil Code of the Republic of Lithuania, notarised powers of attorney and powers of attorney equalled to notarised powers of attorney must be registered in the public Register of Notarised Powers of Attorney. The procedure for the submission of such information and for the use of an online application is described in detail in the Regulations on Electronic Submission of Data to the Register of Notarised Powers of Attorney, approved by the Order of 10 February 2011 No. 1R-47 of the Minister of Justice of the Republic of Lithuania. Provided that agreements on electronic submission of data to the register have been signed with the Central Mortgage Office, notaries, consular officers, and courts of the Republic of Lithuania can, by using an online application, notify the register both of new notarised powers of attorney and powers of attorney equalled to notarised powers of attorney, and of their modification and expiration, including corrections of incorrect, inaccurate or incomplete data in the above-mentioned powers of attorney.

Labour Law

Government approved general description of the procedure for employment termination when whereabouts of an employer are impossible to ascertain

On 1 March 2011, the amendments to Article 124 of the Labour Code of the Republic of Lithuania (the Labour Code) in respect of employment contract termination, when whereabouts of an employer (if an employer is a natural person) or of representatives of an employer are impossible to ascertain, came into force. To implement the provisions of the above-mentioned article, the Government of the Republic of Lithuania (hereinafter “the Government”) passed Resolution No. 220 of 23 February 2011 to approve the general description of the procedure for employment termination on these grounds.

The general description specifies that, in order to terminate employment, when whereabouts of an employer (if an employer is a natural person) or of representatives of an employer are impossible to ascertain, the employee must submit a written request to the State Labour Inspectorate of the Republic of Lithuania (hereinafter „SLI“). The request template is available in the Lithuanian language on the SLI’s website at www.vdi.lt. Such a request may be submitted either by post or e-mail (if an electronic signature is used) or directly to SLI.

Upon receipt of the request, SLI initiates the verification process to ascertain whereabouts of the employer. SLI must announce about the verification process on SLI’s website within one business day from the receipt of the request. SLI then examines the request and conducts the verification process within 20 business days from the receipt of the request. Following the expiration of 20 business days from the receipt of the request and having ascertained no whereabouts of the employer, on the next business day an SLI inspector issues the employee a certificate according to the form established by the Chief State Labour Inspector of the Republic of Lithuania, which states that employment terminated under Article 124.1.4 of the Labour Code (i.e. when whereabouts of an employer (if an employer is a natural person) or of representatives of an employer are impossible to ascertain). It is held that the date of issue of such certificate is the effective date of termination of employment relationships. Having issued such a certificate, SLI also informs the State Social Security Fund under the Ministry of Social Security and Labour about termination of employment relationships concerned.

Minister approved general description of the procedure for the submission of information to SLI about legal and natural persons who perform the functions of employee safety and health services or their part under agreements with employers

Pursuant to the Law of the Republic of Lithuania on Safety and Health at Work, legal or natural persons who, under agreements with employers, perform the functions of employee safety and health services or their part must, in accordance with the procedure set by the Minister of Social Security and Labour, annually submit information to SLI about employers to whom they provided such services and the number of employee safety and health specialists who performed the functions of employee safety and health services or their part. The procedure for the submission of such information and respective ready-to-fill-in forms were approved by Order No. A1-39 of the Minister of Social Security and Labour of 27 January 2011. It should be noted that information on each preceding calendar year must be submitted by 1 March of the running year either by post or by e-mail if an electronic signature is used.

Finance Law

Adjusted procedure on calculation of annual percentage rate of consumer credit cost

In order to implement the recently adopted Law on Consumer Credits (hereinafter “LCC”), the Government passed Resolution No. 347 of 23 March 2011 to adjust the procedure for the calculation of the annual percentage rate of the total cost of the consumer credit. The annual percentage rate of the total cost of the consumer credit enables a consumer to compare which terms are more beneficial for taking the credit. To calculate the annual percentage rate of the total cost of the consumer credit, the total cost of the credit to the consumer is ascertained. In contrast to earlier practice, from now on the total cost of the credit to the consumer will include:

  • administration charges for maintaining an account recording both payment transactions and draw-downs of credit to the consumer (unless the opening of an account is optional and account administration charges have been clearly singled out in the credit agreement for consumer or in any other agreement concluded with the consumer);
  • the charges for using means of payment for both payment transactions and draw-downs;
  • any other charges relating to payment transactions;
  • costs in respect of ancillary services relating to the credit agreement, in particular insurance premiums, if, in addition, the conclusion of a contract for ancillary services relating to the credit agreement is compulsory in order to obtain the credit on the terms and conditions marketed.

With respect to granting of consumer credits in the amount of up to LTL 1000, the national legal framework previously did not provide for a duty of credit lenders to indicate to the clients the total annual percentage rate of the cost of the consumer credit. Pursuant to the recently adopted legislation, the credit lenders must inform the clients of the above-mentioned rate in all cases.

Both LCC and the above-mentioned resolution of the Government came into force on 1 April 2011.

Regulations on examination of violations of LCC approved

For the purpose of implementation of LCC, Director of the State Consumer Rights Protection Authority (hereinafter “the Authority”) passed Order No. 1-35 of 14 March 2011 to approve Regulations on the Examination of Violations of the Law on Consumer Credits. These regulations establish the procedure for the examination of violations of LCC at the Authority. The right to resort to the Authority concerning violations of LCC by submitting the Authority a written request is granted to consumers, governmental and municipal institutions/authorities, and consumer associations (hereinafter “the Claimant”).

In accordance with the above-mentioned regulations, the time limit for the Authority to examine the claimant’s request and impose a sanction is four months from the day of lodging the request at the Authority or the day when the Authority initiates the process of examination of a violation of the Law on its own initiative. If it is stated in the Authority’s decree that an entity violated the provisions of the Law, the Authority then publicly announces about such a violation on its own website within 30 calendar days from the day of passing the decree.

Company Law

Model incorporation documents of a private limited liability company approved

On 16 December 2010, the Minister of Economy issued order No. 4- 917 to approve a model form of an incorporation agreement of a private limited liability company (UAB), model articles of association of a private limited liability company, and recommendations on filling of these model incorporation documents. As soon as the managing authority of the Register of Legal Entities makes required technical changes in its IT system, approval of these model documents will allow incorporation and online registration of a private limited liability company, where the number of company incorporators is two or more. These model documents will be ready for filling in electronically in Lithuanian and will be electronically submitted directly to the manager of the Register of Legal Entities by making use of the selfservice system of the Register Centre at www.registrucentras.lt/savitarna/. These model documents can also be followed in other cases when preparing incorporation documents of a private limited liability company.

Investment Law

Customs Department approved model agreement for servicing a FEZ free territory and standard regulations on accounting of goods in a FEZ free territory

Accounting of goods stored, processed, remade, sold or purchased in a free territory of a free economic zone (hereinafter “FEZ”) is handled pursuant to customs legislation and in accordance with the procedure agreed between the interested persons and a territorial customs office within the operational zone of which the free territory is. In accordance with Part 4 of Article 76 of the Law of the Republic of Lithuania on Customs, the Director General of the Customs Department has the right to set additional requirements for such accounting and/or standard procedure of such accounting. In order to create conditions for proper application of means of customs observation, on 10 December 2010 the Director General of the Customs Department issued order No. 1B-739 to approve model agreement for servicing a FEZ free territory and standard regulations on accounting of goods in a FEZ free territory. These regulations regulate the procedure of accounting of not only the above-listed goods, but also of the goods stored and later destroyed in FEZ free territories as well as of waste with no value from the economic and commercial viewpoints, which formed in free territories and was moved from such territories to other parts of the EU customs territory.

Patent Law

Preparations to ratify the Patent Law Treaty

In the view of Lithuania’s aim to join the Patent Law Treaty (hereinafter “PLT”), which was adopted in Geneva on 1 June 2000 and is currently valid in 27 countries, the Parliament is preparing in the spring session of 2011 to pass the law on ratification of the PLT. It should be noted that the PLT does not regulate issues related tom substantive patent law. The objective of signatory States to the PLT was, with assistance of this treaty, to uniform and simplify formal procedural rules of patent law, by creating similar procedural rules in national law systems and by making easier the procedures for submitting national or regional patent applications and issuing patents.

Amendments to the Law on Patents adopted

As soon as Lithuania joins the PLT, at the same time the new wording of the Law of the Republic of Lithuania on Patents, the wording of which was adopted by the Parliament on 23 December 2010, will come into effect. Taking into account the necessity to implement provisions of the PLT in the national law, the following material amendments to the Law on Patents were made:

  • simplified conditions for according a filing date to an application for patent, since the filing date may be accorded by submitting free-form documents as well;
  • simplified requirements for mandatory representation by providing that foreign legal entities will be no longer required to be represented by patent attorneys of the Republic of Lithuania in performing actions such as filing the application for patent, payment of a fee, etc.;
  • provision for the correction or addition of a priority claim with respect to an application;
  • provision for the restoration of the right of priority if the applicant fails to file a priority application or where a copy of an earlier application is not filed within the time limit prescribed;
  • provision for the extension of the examination of the application if the applicant misses certain time limits of the examination of the application and makes a request to extend them;
  • provision for the reinstatement of the applicant’s or the patent owner’s rights related to the application or the patent if the applicant misses certain procedural time limits and makes a request to extend them.

The new wording also prescribes five new fees payable for requests to the State Patent Bureau to perform the above-mentioned actions. In addition, the new wording of the Law on Patents includes the following amendments which are not connected with the PLT, but also important:

  • provision for a time limit during which a fee for filing the application for patent must be paid;
  • definition of the form of a power of attorney: a power of attorney must be in a simple written from rather than notarised;
  • provision for a licence agreement to come into force to its parties as of the date of its conclusion and in respect of third parties, however, to come into force as of the date of entry of the agreement on the Patent of Register of the Republic of Lithuania;
  • provision for an opportunity to mortgage or seize the right to the application for patent or a patent;
  • shortened time limit for issuing a patent from 6 to 3 months.

Transport Law

Additional Protocol to the Convention on the Contract for the International Carriage of Goods by Road (CMR) concerning the Electronic Consignment Note has been ratified

On 12 November 2010, the Parliament passed the law to ratify the Additional Protocol to the Convention on the Contract for the International Carriage of Goods by Road (CMR) Concerning the Electronic Consignment Note (hereinafter “the Protocol”) that will enter into force for the Republic of Lithuania as of 5 June 2011. The Protocol sets out the legal framework for using electronic means of recording consignment note data. The electronic consignment note for carriage of goods by road is authenticated by means of an electronic signature or by any other electronic authentication method permitted by the law of the country in which the electronic consignment note has been made out. To date, the Protocol is valid in Bulgaria, Latvia, the Netherlands, and Switzerland. By allowing the use of electronic consignment notes, the Protocol will enable carriers and freight forwarders of States parties to the Protocol to conclude and, whenever necessary, change faster and simpler contracts for the international carriage of goods by road. The Protocol will also allow transferring information much faster and more efficient; carriers and operators will benefit from saving time and money.

Public Procurement Law

Model regulations on organising public procurement in purchasing organisations approved

Model regulations on organising public procurement in purchasing organisations were approved by Order of 31 December 2010 No. 1S-181 of the Director of Public Procurement Service. The regulations are an optional document, which is aimed at helping a purchasing organisation to regulate the internal processes of organising public procurement and to define the circle of responsible persons and their functions. The regulations are supplemented with annexes of readyto-fill forms: a list of goods, services and works necessary for purchase within a budget year; a plan of works, goods and service intended to purchase within a budget year for the purchasing organisation’s needs; a checklist; a declaration on impartiality; and a commitment of confidentiality. A purchasing organisation may, pursuant to the provisions of the Law of the Republic of Lithuania on Public Procurement and taking into account the particularity, the size and structure of its operations, establish a procedure for organising public procurement different from the one set in the Regulations, also, by laying down such a procedure not necessarily in the form of regulations on organisation of public procurement.

Other News

Eversheds Saladžius, in cooperation with the Association of Lithuanian Banks, is organising a conference "Reforms of the Lithuanian Financial Sector: What changes are expected? Is the financial sector ready for them?".

The conference will provide delegates from the financial sector with an introduction to the planned reforms and an opportunity to discuss the issues with the experts.

Speakers will include:

  • Ms Ingrida Šimonytė, Minister of Finance of the Republic of Lithuania
  • Dr. Audrius Misevicius, Member of the Board of the Central Bank of the Republic of Lithuania
  • Mr Ramunas Kaklauskas, Head of the Department of Law and International Relations at The Securities Commission of the Republic of Lithuania
  • Dr. Stasys Kropas, President of the Association of Lithuanian Banks
  • Mr Andrius Romanovskis, Director of the Lithuanian Insurance Association
  • Dr. Vitas Vasiliauskas, Chairman of the Board of the Central Bank of the Republic of Lithuania
  • Conference moderator: Julius Niedvaras, Director of the International Business School at Vilnius University.

Should you wish to receive more information on the conference, please go to www.evershedssaladzius.lt or call +370 5 239 2391. 

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