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home     Tourism Law, Part 2
Tourism Law, Part 2
Chapter 4

Part I.
Touroperators and tourism agency activities

Art. 17. (1) Only registered entities can carry out touroperator or tourism agency activities in Bulgaria.

(2) SAT’s chairperson is responsible for the registration of entities in the register of touroperators and tourism agencies. The register is a public document.

(3) To enter the register, an entity needs to meet the following conditions:
1. to be a trader as described by trade laws or to be an individual that has the right to carry out commercial activities;

2. to have staff with the needed qualifications, language skills and experience;

3. to hire a manager having the proper qualifications, language skills and experience;

4. to find a suitable premise for the carrying out of touroperator or tourism agency activities;

5. to have signed a preliminary insurance contract;

6. not to be facing bankruptcy;

7. to have refrained from carrying out touroperator or tourism agency activities without a license in the past 12 months;

8. to have stayed away from license deprivation in the past 12 months.

(4) requirements listed in points 2, 3 and 4 of (3) should be clarified in regulations accepted by the Council of Ministers.

Art. 18. (1) To enter the registered mentioned in art. 17 (3), entities should file a petition in which they should point out the type of tourism services to be offered, a mailing address, an office address, the address of the tourism site and an identification number. The application should contain:
1. certificate of inclusion in the trade register, original or copies of documents that prove the entity has the right to carry out commercial activities.

2. certificate that the entity is not facing bankruptcy;

3. verification of education, language qualification and experience of staff that is to be involved in the entity’s activities;

4. copy of documents verifying education, experience and qualification of the individual hired as a manager of the touroperator or tourism agency;

5. information about the location and condition of the premise that is to be used as office by the entity;

6. copy of ownership documents or leasing contracts that enable the entity to use a certain premise as an office. The documents should have validity of at least one year after the date the application has been submitted;

7. copy of a preliminary insurance contract;

8. declaration stating that in the past 12 months the entity has not carried out touroperator or tourism agency activity without a license or has not been deprived of such license;

9. a document proving that the entity has paid application examination taxes.

(2) Applications mentioned in (1) have to be submitted together with the accompanying documents to SAT.

(3)  The expert commission that registers touroperators and tourism agencies examines applications over a period of two weeks after submission and gives SAT’s chairperson proposal as to the registration or denial of the applying entity.

(4) In cases of missing documentation or invalid application, the entity is given a period of 30 days to provide the adequate application. The two-week period mentioned in (3) is considered to begin after the submission of the corrected documentation.

(5) SAT’s chairperson registers the entity, based on the commission’s recommendation, within two months of the submission of the application. And issues a certificate of the registration or a letter explaining the rejection, in case the decision is such.

(6) A rejection is the subject of an appeal, following the administrative and processional code of Bulgaria.

(7) The registration and the certificate issued alongside are termless.

(8) The registration rights cannot be transferred or given to another entity.

(9) The registration certificate should be positioned at a notable location in the entity’s office.

(10) Registration of tourioperators and tourism agencies is done after the payment of a tax that is determined by the Council of Ministers.

Art. 19. (1) A registered touroperator can apply for registration for tourism agent if, the entity meets the requirements mentioned in art. 17 (3), points 2, 3 and 4. In these cases, the touoperator applies for registration ands supplies the documents described in art. 18 (1), points 3, 4, 5, and 6.

(2) In cases mentioned in (1) registration takes place following procedures in art. 18. Document examination and registration takes place without the payment of specific taxes.

Art. 20. Registration is taken away by the SAT chairperson in the following cases:
1. When the registered entity demands so;

2. In the case of death or in the case of ceased activities of an entity;

3. Following a suggestion of the expert commission:
a) when the registration has been confirmed based on false documentation or on documents that contain inaccuracies;

b) when the tour operator or tourism agency goes bankrupt;

c) in case of systemic violation of the requirements listed in art. 17 (3), points 2, 3 and 4 and art. 24 (1) and (4).

d) if a touroperator fails submitting a signed insurance contract, as mentioned in art. 42 (1).

e) if the touroperator or the tourism agency issues in the course of its activities a false document, in case such a violation has been proven in court;

f) when a second violation of the requirements in art. 27 (4) occurs;

g) when a second violation of the requirements in art. 30a occurs;

h) when a second violation of the requirements in art. 30b occurs;

(2) Once the registration is taken away, the certificate loses its validity.

(3) The order of SAT’s chairperson for the deprivation of a license can be appealed following Bulgaria’s administrative and processional code.

(4) When a registration is taken away, SAT’s chairperson should take the measures needed to inform people about the decision.

Art. 21. (1) The register of art. 17 (2) includes the following information:
1. registration number;

2. type of tourism activity/activities;

3. company name, address and address of the management office;

4. address of the place(s) where the entity carries out its activities, including telephone number, fax, electronic mail;

5. unified identification code;

6. name and identity number of the manager;

7. the number of the registration or deprivation decision that SAT’s chairperson has taken;

8. the number and date of the signed insurance contract based on art. 42 (1), name of the advertising company and term of validity;

9. any enforced sanctions or administrative measures based on this law.

(2) If a change of the items listed in (1) occurs, the registered entity should inform SAT’s chairperson about the change in a period of 30 days after it takes place. Together with the notice, the entity should submit documents verifying the change and a document about paid registration tax based on the tariff of art. 18 (10). New certificate should be issued, in case such is needed.

Art. 22. Enforced on November 14 2004.

Art. 23. Enforced on November 14 2004.

Art. 24. (1) When touroperators and tourism agencies carry out their activities on the territory of the country, they should sign agreements with licensed tourism agents, licensed insurance and transportation companies, tour guides, mountain guides, ski instructors, individuals offering water and air tourism services that have the proper qualification and experience, as well as with individuals that carry out tourism activities in categorized tourism sites.

(2) Requirements mentioned in (1) concerning professional qualification and experience are to be determined by the Council of Ministers, based on recommendations of the SAT chairperson.

(3) An order sets the opportunities of individuals who are members of international organizations to carry out the instruction of individuals mentioned in (1) and to issue documents certifying their experience and qualification.

(4) Touroperators or tourism agencies should sign with tourists a mandatory insurance contract using the services of authorized insurance companies in cases of travel outside the country.

(5) To sign an agreement about the insurance, insurance agents can be individuals, as long as they comply with insurance laws.