GendeRace - Bulgaria Country Report 2009
Bulgaria Country Report 2009

Bulgaria Country Report

June 2009 



There are several ways for protection against discrimination in Bulgaria:

  1. An individual may file a case before the corresponding district court under the Civil Procedure Code. Such actions can be undertaken by trade unions and NGOs on behalf of the discriminated individuals as well.
  2. A discriminating act of the administrative authorities can be appealed before the competent administrative court under the rules of the Administrative Procedure Code.
  3. Since 2005 the basic venue for discrimination complaints is the Commission for Protection from Discrimination (CPD). In 2005 it received more than 100 complaints. The number grew to 389 for 2006 and 649 for 2007. The Commission review the cases in specialized panels as follows:
  • First Panel: Ethnic and Racial affiliation.
  • Second Panel: gender, human genome, employment, harassment at the workplace, ttrade union affiliation and trade union membership.
  • Third Panel: nationality, citizenship, origin, religion and belief.
  • Fourth Panel: education, conviction, political affiliation, personal or social status, property status.
  • Fifth Panel: disability, age, sexual orientation, family status.
  • Enlarged five - member Panel for cases of multiple discrimination.
  • Ad hoc Panel for special cases.
The decisions of the Commission are subject to appeal within 14 days before the Supreme Administrative Court (SAC) under the provisions of the Administrative Procedure Code. Up to date the Supreme Administrative Court has issued more than 250 rulings and decisions on appeals related to decisions of the Commission for Protection from Discrimination (CPD).


4. Another alternative for an individual suffering from discrimination (especially in cases where no other legal remedy is available) is to complain before the national Ombudsman. The Ombudsman has the power to propose to the corresponding authority to take measures to stop or prevent the existing discrimination. The Ombudsman may also file a case before the Constitutional Court in cases where the Ombudsman is of the opinion that a legislative statute adopted by the National Assembly actually violates the fundamental rights and freedoms of the citizens (including cases of discrimination).

This report is based on data from 156 complaints as follows:

  • 21 – from the Ombudsman Office
  • 128 – from the CPD. Six of the cases have been followed up to their appeal before the SAC. In three of the cases SAC has affirmed the CPD decisions, in other two the CPD decisions have been reversed, and one of the decisions has been partially affirmed and partially reversed.
  • The report also includes data from four SAC decisions, and also one decision of the Plovdiv Administrative Court, one of the Sofia City Court, and one of the Plovdiv District Court. The latter has been followed through its appeals up to the Supreme Court of Cassation.



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