Skip to main content

IS IT POSSIBLE TO EXTEND THE DEADLINE FOR A REPLY?

 

A Member State can apply for an extension of the deadline for a reply either to a letter of formal notice or a reasoned opinion, whereby it is necessary to consider certain requirements and to fulfil specific conditions.
  
With a view to making the process of dealing with applications for an extension of the deadline easier, the European Commission has drawn up a special form and asked Member States to regularly use it in such cases.

 

A deadline for a reply to a letter of formal notice can be extended only under the following conditions:


- when this is the first application for an extension;
- the new deadline may not be longer than the original deadline;
- the application must be sent to the Secretariat General prior to the expiry of the original deadline;
- the extension of a deadline is not granted in the case of holiday periods.

 

The deadline for a reply to a reasoned opinion can be extended only under the following conditions:


- the application must be submitted in order to allow the Member State in question to introduce the legislative procedure for complying with the reasoned opinion;
- the application must contain a realistic and sufficiently precise timetable, for example a draft with a request for the matter to be put on the order of the day of a legislative body;
- the subsequent deadline must not be longer than three months;
- the application must be sent to the Secretariat General prior to the expiry of the original deadline;
- the extension of a deadline is not granted in the case of holiday periods.

 

All applications for an extension of a deadline that do not fulfil the above conditions shall be rejected by the European Commission with an express letter, except in cases where the Commission takes a decision to the contrary.

 

The European Commission may with regard to both a letter of formal notice and a reasoned opinion – despite the fulfilment of the above conditions – reject an application for an extension of a deadline for a reply. In such instances the European Commission takes a decision to the contrary and does not explain the reasons for the rejection, only stating that, due to special circumstances relating to this matter, the Commission can not approve the extension of a deadline for a reply.