Information on the status of protected tenants (following the decision of the Constitutional Court)
02.12.2020 – Due to an increased and frequent number of inquiries related to the subject of protected tenants, and upon the adoption of the Decision of the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Croatia, No.: U-I-3242/2018 and others of 14 September 2020 abolishing the provisions of Articles 28a, 28b, 28c, 28d, 28d, 28e, 28e, 28f, 28 g, 28 g, 28 h, 28 h, 28 i, 28 j, 28 k, 28 l, 28 m and 28 n of the Act on Amendments to the Apartment Lease Act (Official Gazette 91/96, 48/98, 66/98, 22/06 and 68/18) and of Article 6 of the Apartment Lease Act (Official Gazette 68/18), in order to answer the most frequent and prevailing questions in this regard, we state as follows.
The provision of Article 55(2) of the Constitutional Law on the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Croatia (Official Gazette 99/99, 29/02 and 49/02) stipulates that an abolished law and other regulations, or their abolished provisions, shall cease to be effective on the day of publication of the Constitutional Court's decision in the Official Gazette, unless the Constitutional Court sets a different deadline. Accordingly, by abolishing the aforementioned provisions of the Apartment Lease Act, they ceased to be valid on the date of publication of the Constitutional Court Decision in the Official Gazette on 25 September 2020, with legal effect ex nunc
, i.e. from that moment on.
The above indicated, in the context of issues related to the rental rate paid by protected tenants, and given that the Constitutional Court's decision abolished, among others, the provisions of the Apartment Lease Act which stipulated an increase in the amount of the rent, resulted in the fact that with cessation of validity of the respective provisions of the Apartment Lease Act, i.e., as of 25 September 2020, protected tenants were obliged to pay the rent in the amount they had paid before the entry into force of the Act on Amendments to the Apartment Lease Act (Official Gazette 68/18), i.e., the rent they paid on 31 August 2018. In this regard, it should be noted that protected tenants who have paid increased protected rent since the date of entry into force of the Act on Amendments to the Apartment Rental Act (Official Gazette 68/18) do not have the right to a refund of the money paid for the increased rent.
Furthermore, and since the respective Constitutional Court Decision also abolished the provisions of the Apartment Lease Act stipulating that protected tenants and protected subtenants were obliged to vacate the apartments owned by natural persons no later than 1 September 2023 if they failed to conclude a new contract with the lessor, this, in the context of issues related to the apartment lease agreement between the lessor and the protected tenant, results in the fact that such agreements are re-concluded for an indefinite time period.
Finally, in the context of questions related to the timeline within which the drafting of the ''new Apartment Lease Act“ shall start, given the consequences of the Constitutional Court Decision in question, we inform you that in the Proposal of the Plan of legislative activities of the Ministry of Physical Planning, Construction and State Assets for 2021 the Act on Amendments to the Apartment Lease Act is planned to be submitted into governmental procedure in the second quarter of 2021.
In the period from 4 to 18 December 2020,
the Ministry of Physical Planning, Construction and State Assets is conducting public consultations for purposes of the Previous Assessment Form of the Act on Amendments to the Apartment Lease Act.
The interested and professional public may get involved by delivering its opinions, suggestions and observations no later than 18 December 2020, upon prior registration, via the eSavjetovanja
- Apartment Lease Act (Official Gazette 91/1996, 68/18, 48/1998 – Constitutional Court decision, 66/1998 – corrigendum of the Constitutional Court decision, 105/2020 – Constitutional Court decision and 22/2006 - Act on the Sale of Apartments intended for janitors)