Fiches Belges
Measure Implementation
Measure possibility

Legal Framework
Applicable Framework

Competent authority
Execute/recognise measure

Accepted Languages

Execution Deadline

Legal info
Special requirements
Other information

Fiches Belges: Bulgaria

Summoning witnesses (701)



Is this measure possible in your Member State under International Judicial Cooperation?

A method by which the personal attendance of persons who are able to describe facts and circumstances of significance for the case is assured when they shall be interrogated before courts or authorities that conduct pre-trial proceedings /investigator or prosecutor/. Application of the measure in the framework of the international legal cooperation. There is no alternative measure with the same purpose.



International legal framework applicable for this measure in your Member State

I. European Convention on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters of 1959 and II. Convention on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters between the Member-States of the European Union of 2000.



* receive the request/decision for judicial cooperation

In fulfillment of requests for legal assistance summoning of witness shall be performed by the court – in the court stage of proceedings and by the prosecutor – in the pre-trial stage of proceedings. Order for summoning of witness in the pre-trial stage of proceedings may be issued only by the prosecutor from the prosecutor`s office competent to conduct the proceedings according to subject matter jurisdiction /regional or district/.

* execute/recognise the measure (if other than the receiving authority)

After the competent authority issues an act by virtue of which the request for legal assistance is accepted for fulfillment, it may: 1. In the court proceedings the court shall assign to an official from the respective court, municipality or mayor`s office to serve the subpoena to the witness. 2. In the pre-trial proceedings the prosecutor directly or by ordering to the investigation authority shall serve the subpoena. 3. When the subpoena may not be served in some of the ways described above it shall be served by the services of the Ministry of Interior or the Ministry of Justice. 4. In urgent cases the summoning may be performed via telephone, telex or fax.



Accepted languages for the request/decision

Bulgarian language or one of the official languages of the Council of Europe. With regard to promptness and efficiency it is recommended the requests/decisions/ to be accompanied by translation in Bulgarian language.



Deadlines for the execution of the request/decision (where applicable)

Specific deadline is not envisaged. The practice shows that the fulfilment of requests/decisions usually takes between two and four months.



a. Special requirements

The serving to military servants may be performed by the respective unit or organization. The serving to workers and employees may be performed by the employer or by an employee authorized to accept documents. The serving to under age persons shall be performed by their legal representatives. The serving to persons who are deprived of liberty or arrested shall be performed by the respective institutions. The serving to physical persons, legal entities and organizations, which remain abroad shall be performed in conformity to the contract for legal assistance signed with the respective country and when such contract is not signed – by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In urgent cases the summoning may be performed via telephone, telex or fax. The summoning via telephone or fax shall be verified in writing by the official who performed it and via telex – by written verification for received message. The subpoena served to the accused person shall contain written information about his right to appear together with a defense counsel. The subpoena served to the private plaintiff or to the persons who may be constituted as private prosecutor, civil claimant and civil respondent shall contain written information about their right to appear together with an attorney.

b. Other useful information

It is possible the measure to be performed in conformity to the procedure applicable in the requesting state if this does not contradict to main principles of the law of Republic of Bulgaria.

Last reviewed on 25 August 2016 by EJN Secretariat
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