The government commission approved a bill allowing bailiffs to seize foreign passports from debtors who are restricted from traveling abroad. About it told RIA Novosti Chairman of the Board of the Russian Lawyers’ Association (AYUR) Vladimir Gruzdev.
Withdrawn passports in all cases must be sent to the issuing state authority. The initiative extends to citizens “who for some reason have limited travel abroad,” including because of non-execution of court decisions, Gruzdev said.
The interrogators of the compulsory enforcement service will seize the passports. The debtor must receive a copy of the decree recognizing that he is not allowed to travel abroad: either an electronic notification is sent during the day, or the information is provided in person, under signature. The passport can be returned to the migration service after the fulfillment of obligations, explained the head of the board of the AYR.
The draft stipulates that passports will also be invalidated “after six months after the occurrence of the relevant circumstances.” The legal basis is the change of the owner’s surname, first name, date of birth and gender.
Cancellation also threatens if the passport was issued according to inaccurate documents or its owner lost Russian citizenship: either he left it voluntarily, or a decision was made to cancel the granting of citizenship to a person.
Some experts believe that the bill is aimed primarily at debtors restricted to travel abroad and will have a psychological character, notes Echo of Moscow. Other analysts, however, expressed doubts that bailiffs, who can be empowered to seize passports, will be able to effectively perform this function.
Now a passport is withdrawn if its owner is restricted from leaving the country as a suspect or accused in a criminal case, or he is convicted of a crime or evades the obligations imposed on him by the court. A passport can be seized by a court, internal affairs bodies, border or customs authorities.
According to the Federal Bailiffs Service, by May 1, due to debts, more than 5 million Russians were not allowed to travel abroad.