Claims related to the Covid-19 pandemic
The outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic has entailed the declaration of the state of alarm in Spain. This has caused a slowdown and, in many cases, a stoppage of the economic activity of the country. There are several companies that have been forced to take several measures to keep its business whole that have affected those labor relationships kept with its employees and also those contractual/commercial relationships with third parties.
Those affected in some way from a legal point of view by the Covid-19 pandemic and the consequent state of alarm, should bear in mind what their contractual rights are in order to take the proper steps in due time.
Within the contractual field, there might be those who have initiated a business, signed a contract or planned a trip before the arrival of the pandemic and they are now in the need to stop their activity, cancel a trip or not to comply with a given contractual obligation, such as attending payments as agreed (this is to say, a breach of contract or, as the case may be, a contract modification). However, this does not mean that, within the context of the current health crisis, it is right not to comply or postpone what has been agreed in a contract. The parties must pay attention to what is set out by law in terms of contractual compliance and also to the possibility to renegotiate the contractual terms in good faith (amounts to be paid, payment deferments, supply deadlines, etc.).
Within the scope of the state of alarm, the Spanish Government has been issuing several laws (“Reales Decretos”) in order to regulate the situation of the Covid-19 urgently and exceptionally. These laws provide several measures for some groups, like consumers in terms of contracts entered into with hotel establishments or travel agencies. It is very common during these times of health crisis that a consumer has booked a hotel room, for example, and, due to the arrival of the Covid-19 pandemic, has been forced to cancel the booking. In this very case both the hotel establishment and the consumer have several rights to be kept in mind.
At OTIS Advocaten we have a group of lawyers specialized in the contractual field with high experience in claims of all kinds and aware of the legal developments arising from the current health crisis. For any related queries, please contact us.