Legal regime for registration of guest rooms and apartmentsThis article will consider the legal regime for registration of guest rooms and apartments under the Ordinance on the requirements for categorized places for accommodation and restaurants and places for entertainment (issued on 26.06.20 and published in the Darjaven Vestnik on 03.07.20) (Ordinance), on the procedure for determining the category, as well as on the rules and the procedure for registration of guest rooms and guest apartments.

The new Ordinance aims to introduce new rules and procedures for registration of guest rooms and guest apartments and categorizes them as a type of accommodation - class "В".

First of all, it should be specified that there is no obligation for the rentier to occupy the dwelling or building, while the guest room or apartment is provided to tourists. The legislator has decided to facilitate the activity by removing this restriction.

What documents do I need for registration?

Important clarification: With the changes in the Tourism Act (PA) from 25.02.2020. the obligation to present a document with the signatures of more than 50 percent of the owners in the building, certifying their consent to carry out the tourist activity, is revoked.

All of the documents listed below are submitted to the mayor of the municipality at the location of the site.

The required documents are the following:
1. A document certifying the right of ownership over the apartment
2. An application-declaration according to a sample under art. 129a of the Tourism Act to the mayor of the municipality

In the application-declaration it is required to declare the following:

- the capacity of the site - number of rooms, number of beds;
- An identifier of the real estate, in the sense of art. 26, para. 2 of the Cadastre and property register act;
- The name of the person who will perform the hotel business, as well as the name of the place of accommodation;
- Address of the accommodation;
- Telephone / fax and e-mail address of the person if available, and in case the person does not have those - the names of the authorized person and his telephone / fax and e-mail address are written;

Individuals other than the property owner must submit:

3. a document certifying their right to carry out activity in the site, for example – a letter of permission from the landlord. The individualizing data of the letter of permission must also be indicated;

The following documents must be attached to the declaration:

- a) a copy of the letter of permission of the site, if the property is not your own and is not subject to entry;
- b) an explicit power of attorney, when the application-declaration is submitted by a proxy.

When the person, who actually carries out activity in the site, is different from the one entered in the registration certificate, he is obliged to submit an application-declaration for registration according to art. 31 and art. 129a of the Tourism Act.
In case of a change of the capacity a new application-declaration is required to be submitted.

Deadline for registration, termination and error correction

Within 7 days from the submission of the application-declaration, the mayor of the municipality or an official authorized by him will issue an order for registration and a certificate to the person, who has applied for rental management in a guest room / guest apartment.

In case you want to discontinue your rental business, you must submit an application for termination of the activity to the mayor of the municipality. The term to end the permit is 3 days from the submission of the application.

If errors are made in the data on the application-declaration, you will have 3 days from the receipt of the notification to correct them. Otherwise, the proceedings are terminated.

According to Art. 32, para. 2 of the Ordinance, the registration certificate is indefinite.

What costs should I expect?

The costs for categorization of guest rooms and apartments can be found in the given link:

To confirm the category of class B accommodation - guest rooms, guest apartments, guest houses, bungalows and campsites:
- a) For categorization of tourist sites - BGN 10 per bed
- b) For confirmation of categorization and on-site inspection - BGN 10. on bed

Main obligations for renting rooms/apartments

It is very important to know that when renting out rooms or apartments for guests, you perform a tourist activity within the meaning of Art. 3, paragraph 1, item 2 and you are obliged to keep a register for the accommodation of tourists in the same way as the places for accommodation of class “A” and class “B” - hotels, motels, hotels, boarding houses, etc. do - according to art. 116 of the Tourism Act, namely:

• through a centralized information system maintained by the Minister of Tourism, accessible through a public web-based or other online access application;
• through an information system that meets the requirements of the Electronic Government Act selected by the person, who performs the rentals.

You are required to add the following additional tourist information to the aforementioned register:

- full number of names of the foreigner;
- date and year of birth;
- citizenship;
- passport number;
- period of his stay in a tourist site.

Personal data

In all cases of activity in renting out apartments and guest houses, as a trader and as a non-trader, you process personal to the persons who are accommodated. Therefore, while operating the rental business, you also act as a controller of personal data (PII) and have obligations to introduce the activity of processing PII in accordance with the Personal Data Protection Act and GDPR. As an PII administrator, you are required to prepare a privacy policy with which you must comply. The minimum policy requirements are - setting out the objectives for which the personal information is processed, to guarantee the basic principles of transparency, accountability and respect for consumer rights.

If you need any assistance or have questions about the legal regime for registering guest rooms and apartments, do not hesitate to contact us - your online legal advisor!

Petar Dimitrov

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