Wednesday, 25 March 2020 20:46

State of emergency - COVID 19 - What you need to know

by José Luis Moreira da Silva
Partner and Head of the Public Procurement Department - SRS Legal

1. How does the law defines State of Emergency?

The State of Emergency is foreseen and regulated under the Constitution of the Portuguese Republic (“CRP”) and Law n.º 44/86, of 30 September.
The State of Emergency is a state of exception that can be declared in cases of public calamity (arts. 19/2 of the CRP and 1/1 of Law n.º 44/86).
The declaration of the State of Emergency gives the authorities the power to take all necessary and appropriate measures for the prompt restoration of constitutional normality (art. 19/8 of the CRP).

2. What measures can be taken and who is legally responsible for implementing them?

The law provides only for the limits of the measures to be implemented, giving ample scope for its specific definition (art. 2/2 of Law n.º 44/86).
In the case of a health emergency, the measures to be adopted should be particularly restrictive of citizens' mobility and freedom, which may involve quarantine and forced isolation.
The declaration of the State of Emergency is of the exclusive competence of the President of the Republic but requires the hearing of the Government and the authorisation of the Parliament. The Government is the entity legally responsible for the execution of the measures determined (art. 17 of Law n.º 44/86).

3. For how long can the State of Emergency be declared?

The duration of the State of Emergency may not be for more than 15 days, without prejudice to possible renewals, of one or more periods, with the same time limit (articles 19/5 of the CRP and 5 of Law n.º 44/86).
The declaration of the State of Emergency is immediately revoked if the circumstances that required its implementation cease to exist (art. 13/1 of Law n.º 44/86EM). 

4. What are the implications for citizens' rights, freedoms and guarantees?

The State of Emergency can only establish the suspension or restriction of certain rights, freedoms and guarantees (art. 19/3 of the CRP); these must be specified in the declaration of the State of Emergency (arts. 19/5 of the CRP and 9/2 of Law n.º 44/86).
Suspension of rights, freedoms and guarantees must always respect the principle of proportionality, equality and non-discrimination (art. 2/2 of Law n.º 44/86).
Citizens have the right of access to the courts to defend their rights, freedom and guarantees (art. 6 of the Law n.º 44/86).

5. What are the implications for companies and workers?

If mandatory quarantine and/or isolation measures are implemented, companies will have to implement remote working to ensure the continuity of their activities.
Companies can also consider implementing a temporary reduction of normal working hours or suspension of employment contracts (layoff), if strictly necessary to ensure the viability of the company and the maintenance of jobs.

6. What happens to those who do not comply with the measures of the declaration of State of Emergency?

Whoever fails to comply with the measures established in the declaration of the State of Emergency will be incurring a crime of disobedience (art. 348 of the Penal Code), punishable with imprisonment for up to 1 year or with a fine of up to 120 days. (art. 7 of Law n.º 44/86).
In the case of a crime of qualified disobedience, the sentences will be doubled, with a prison sentence of up to 2 years and a fine of up to 240 days.

SRS Logo 

Rua Dom Francisco Manuel de Melo, 21
1070-085 Lisboa
T. +351 21 313 2000
F. +351 21 313 2001
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

This website uses cookies

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies on the IberianLawyer website. However, you can change your cookie settings at any time. Learn more

I agree

What do I need to know about cookies?

A cookie is a small text file that’s stored on your computer or mobile device when you visit a website. We use them to:

  • Remember your preferences
  • Tailor our sites to your interests.

There are different types of cookies

First party cookies

These are set by the website you’re visiting. And only that website can read them.  In addition, a website might use a separate company to analyse how people are using their site. And this separate company will set their own cookie to do this.

Third party cookies

These are set by someone other than the owner of the website you’re visiting. 

Some IberianLawyer web pages may also contain content from other sites like Vimeo or Flickr, which may set their own cookies. Also, if you Share a link to a IberianLawyer page, the service you share it on (e.g. Facebook) may set a cookie on your browser.

The IberianLawyer has no control over third party cookies.

Advertising cookies

Some websites use advertising networks to show you specially targeted adverts when you visit. These networks may also be able to track your browsing across different sites.

IberianLawyer site do use advertising cookies but they won’t track your browsing outside the IberianLawyer.

Session cookies

These are stored while you’re browsing. They get deleted from your device when you close your browser e.g. Internet Explorer or Safari.

Persistent cookies

These are saved on your computer. So they don’t get deleted when you close your browser.

We use persistent cookies when we need to know who you are for more than one browsing session. For example, we use them to remember your preferences for the next time you visit.

Other tracking technologies

Some sites use things like web beacons, clear GIFs, page tags and web bugs to understand how people are using them and target advertising at people.

They usually take the form of a small, transparent image, which is embedded in a web page or email. They work with cookies and capture data like your IP address, when you viewed the page or email, what device you were using and where you were.

How does the Iberian Lawyer use cookies?

We use different types of cookies for different things, such as:

  • Analysing how you use the IberianLawyer
  • Giving you a better, more personalised experience
  • Recognising when you’ve signed in

Strictly Necessary cookies

These cookies let you use all the different parts of Iberian Lawyer. Without them services that you have asked for cannot be provided.

Some examples of how we use these cookies are:

  • Signing into the IberianLawyer
  • Remembering previous actions such as text entered into a registration form when navigating back to a page in the same session
  • Remembering security settings which restrict access to certain content.

Performance cookies

These help us understand how people are using the IberianLawyer online, so we can make it better. And they let us try out different ideas.
We sometimes get other companies to analyse how people are using the IberianLawyer online. These companies may set their own performance cookies You can opt out of these cookies here.Some examples of how we use these cookies are:

  • To collect information about which web pages visitors go to most often so we can improve the online experience
  • Error management to make sure that the website is working properly
  • Testing designs to help improve the look and feel of the website.
Cookie nameWhat it's for
Google DoubleClick The IberianLawyer uses Google DoubleClick to measure the effectiveness of its online marketing campaigns.Opt-out of DoubleClick cookies
Google Analytics From time to time some IberianLawyer online services, including mobile apps, use Google Analytics. This is a web analytics service provided by Google, Inc. Google Analytics sets a cookie in order to evaluate use of those services and compile a report for us.Opt-out of Google Analytics cookies