The outbreak of COVID-19 has been declared as a global pandemic by the World Health Organization on March 11, 2020. As the outbreak has become a critical threat, every country has started taking significant measures to protect people’s health. Turkey, as a response to the outbreak, has also taken several legal measures as well as social measures to ensure the health of the community.

The Presidential Decree concerning the Suspension of Enforcement and Bankruptcy Proceedings (No: 2020/2279), has been published in the Official Gazette on March 22, 2020. The Decree is a part of the measures taken to prevent the spread of the epidemic in the country. Pursuant to the Decree, all enforcement and bankruptcy proceedings, except for the proceedings related to alimony claims, are suspended until April 30, 2020. Furthermore, no new proceedings shall be commenced and none of the ongoing ones will be executed until this date. The Decree is based on the grounds of the Article 330 of the Execution and Bankruptcy Code.

The main purpose of the suspension is to protect debtors since the speed and effect of the outbreak has been widely affecting the economy. Consequently, the Decree is a critical step to relieve the economic distress over debtors amid the virus crisis.