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The Code of Organization and Civil Procedure (Amendment) Act, 2021

ACT No. XXVII of 2021 of the 1st June 2021 has amended Title VI of the Code of Organisation and Civil Procedure (“COCP”) Chapter 12 of the Laws of Malta relating to precautionary acts.  

Prior to the amendments, the

COCP provided that where a judicial letter is filed and sworn according to article 166A of the COCP, and where a letter has been lodged in accordance with article 34 of the Mediation Act relating to proceedings before the Rent Regulation Board, there may also thereupon be sworn and filed the precautionary warrants of description, warrant of seizure and the garnishee order.

The amendments introduced the same opportunity to file the precautionary warrants of description, warrant of seizure and the garnishee order where a judicial letter has been filed to render bills of exchange or promissory notes executable in accordance with the proviso to article 253(e) and where a judicial letter has been filed in accordance with article 466 relating to proceedings for debts due to Government. When such letter is filed to render bills of exchange or promissory notes executable or in accordance with article 466, the applicant must attach a copy of such letter in the acts of the precautionary warrant.

In view of the above, article 838B of the COCP was amended to provide that precautionary warrants issued become executive warrants after that the cause becomes res judicata or when in accordance with article 166B and article 253(e) and article  466, such judicial letter, bill of exchange or promissory note constitutes an executive title; so however that: in  the  case  of  a  warrant  issued  under  article 830(1)(b), (c), (d) and (f), the creditor shall file a note within fifteen (15) days from when the executive title is obtained (substituting from the cause becoming res judicata) in the acts of the same warrant and demand an extension or reduction of the effects of the warrant  to  an  amount equivalent to the legal costs,  interest and the principal amount due in terms of the executive title obtained (substituting in terms of the judgement), and such note is to be served upon the debtor and such persons as may have any interest therein.

This article was written by Associate Dr Maria Attard.

For more information on the filing of precautionary acts during civil litigation, kindly contact Dr Robert Tufigno, Dr Ivan Gatt or Dr Maria Attard.

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to impart legal advice and readers are asked to seek verification of statements made before acting on them.