Last Updated: 8th May 2020
The 2019 coronavirus disease outbreak has effected work at the law courts in Malta and Gozo.
On May 5th the court lockdown has been partially reversed. Presently the court registry are accepting court notes and applications (Legal Notice 177 of 2020) that may be filed. The prescriptive time periods, that were suspended are still not effected.
The law courts are still closed for the public, in the sense that all ordinary court sittings are being generally postponed. The closure of the law courts was ordered by the Superintendent of Public Health and brought into effect by Legal Notice 65 of 2020 and Legal Notice 97 of 2020. In April 2020 parliament enacted the Legal Time Period (Suspension and Interruption) Act in order to have it clarified that as long as the order of the Superintendent of Health remains in force, certain time periods are suspended or interrupted.
Despite the lockdown the law courts will still hold emergency sittings when necessary.
Most ordinary court sittings scheduled before the law courts have been deferred to further dates. In order to find out whether a case has been deferred or not, one can visit the ECourts Justice Website or phone the law courts (2590200) and ask the court deputy registrar for which date the sitting is adjourned to.
The Legal Time Period (Suspension and Interruption) Act clarified that the time periods prescribed by any law or time periods set in any contract are still suspended. There are a number of instances and circumstances where such time periods are not suspended. It is strongly advisable that one consults a lawyer to determine whether the applicable time limits have been suspended or not.