While there are several decisions rendered by the Court of Cassation regarding the calculation of time limits for electronically rendered notices, there is no established jurisprudence and there are different opinions among different chambers regarding the issue. In its current decision no. 2020/1187-2020/4264 dated December 9, 2020, the 4th Civil Chamber of the Court of Cassation (“Court of Cassation’s Judgement“) rendered that if an addressee opens an electronic notification, the service will be deemed to have been served. In other words, the statute of limitations will start running from the reading date of the service .
The electronic notification system is regulated by the Notification Law No. 7201 (“Notification Law“); the Regulation on the Electronic Notification of January 1, 2019 (“Regulation“); and the Procedures and Principles Regarding Technical Criteria of the National Electronic Notification System, which was issued by the Ministry of Justice pursuant to the Regulation. As per the Notification Law and the Regulation, electronic notifications are deemed to have been served at the end of the fifth day following the date on which it reaches the addressee’s electronic notification address.
The implementation of the Regulation have been problematic and debated due to the lack of consistency among the precedents of the Court of Cassation on the date of notification.
What Does The Court of Cassation Say?
Before the Court of Cassation’s Judgement subject to the alert was rendered, the 10th Civil Chamber of the Court of Cassation, through its decision no. 2018/4120-2018/6993 dated September 25, 2018, ordered that even if the addressee opens the electronic notification, the notification will be deemed to have been read at the end of the fifth day as of the day it reached the addressee, and the legal time limits would start to run as of this same moment. On the other hand, the 9th Civil Chamber of the Court of Cassation in its decision no. 2019/3692-2019/16152 dated September 18, 2019, concluded that the electronic notification is considered opened on the day it reaches the addressee, and therefore the legal time limits should be calculated from the date when the addressee opens the notice. However, in line with the 10th Civil Chamber of the Court of Cassation’s decision, the 9th Chamber of the Court of Cassation in its decision no. 2019/7836-2019/21446 dated December 3, 2019 concluded that the notice should be deemed to have been served at the end of the fifth day as of the day it reached the addressee’s electronic notification address.
Unlike from the 9th and 10th Chambers of the Court of Cassation, the 4th Civil Chamber of the Court of Cassation identifies the date of opening and reading of the electronic notification as the date of service and rendered that the time limit starts to run as of that day. Accordingly, the 4th Civil Chamber of the Court of Cassation considered that the opening date of the electronic notice in question is also the date of service and calculated the statute of limitations as of this date. The court rejected the defendant’s request for appeal on the grounds that it was not filed in due time.
The chambers of the Court of Cassation have several different opinions regarding the date on which legal time limits for electronically served notices begin running, which results in the courts rendering differing decisions. In order to avoid any loss of right, it is recommended to utilize the opening date of the service when calculating the legal time limits in electronic notifications.