White Smoke: Strike Ends for Spanish Court Clerks

29 March 2023 - Sonia Gumpert Melgosa

On 28 March 2023, the open-ended strike called by Spanish court clerks on 24 January 2023 came to an end.

After more than two months of near total paralysis of judicial activity throughout Spain, the backlog of proceedings and notifications is unprecedented. In order to avoid an avalanche of notifications to court representatives (procuradores) and lawyers, the Spanish Ministry of Justice has established a unified approach for all judicial bodies regarding such notifications. This regulation, set forth in Circular 2/2023, foresees a gradual decrease in the backlog of notifications. Pursuant to this unified approach, the respective court may not dispatch more than 50% in excess of the average volume of ordinary notifications during the five days following the strike end date, that is, between 29 March and 4 April. The volume of notifications dispatched is monitored automatically by the Lexnet system or the respective system of the autonomous community vested with delegated judicial authority.

This is good news. Court activity will hopefully resume as soon as possible, especially given that this excessively long strike has exacerbated the already endemic delays in the Spanish justice system, further delaying hearings and trials and paralysing thousands of claims.