In order to carry out the implementation of electronic notifications in the organization itself, it must be taken into account that it is not just about the implementation of a technological project, but that the project will need to be planned taking into account the legal, technological and organizational aspects. This module details all these aspects that must be taken into account to ensure that the implementation of electronic notifications is done with guarantees of success within the organization itself.

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Regulation of electronic notification

Pursuant to the provisions of Law 39/2015, of October 1, the subjects listed in Article 14.2 thereof must compulsorily communicate by electronic means with Public Administrations.

This, without prejudice to the fact that the regulations establish the obligation to carry out notifications electronically for certain procedures and certain groups of natural persons who, due to their economic, technical capacity, professional dedication or other reasons, are accredited to have guaranteed access and availability of the necessary technological means.

Apart from the previous cases, at any time the non-obligated interested parties can select the electronic channel as the preferred one to relate to the Public Administrations.

Some examples of regulation that establish the obligation of electronic notifications are:

On the other hand, with regard to the specific case of local administrations, they can approve electronic administration ordinances that regulate electronic notification, based on the basic state and regional legislation, and in which assumptions can also be contemplated of mandatory electronic notifications for certain groups (other than those provided for by law).

It should be borne in mind that the approval of the electronic administration ordinance is optional in the sense that, if there is no specific local regulation in the field of electronic notifications, the general regulation will always prevail, which provides that electronic notifications can be made with the consent of the citizen (unless he is an obliged subject).

On the website of the AOC Consortium you can find a model electronic administration ordinance prepared by Localret and the AOC Consortium.

Electronic registration regulation

It is optional to register the electronic notifications, pursuant to Law 39/2015, of October 1. Where we choose to do so, this may be the general register or an auxiliary register created for this purpose. Whichever register is used, the electronic entries made in the register must have legal validity and, therefore, it will need to be regulated in the rule for creating the register.

The different registration options available to a Catalan public administration are:

  • EACAT: The entities that, at the time, adhered to EACAT, accepted the conditions that had to govern the communications through the platform and at the same time created an auxiliary electronic entry and exit register for the reception and sending the documentation associated with the inter-administrative procedures available on the platform. Therefore, all of these already have an auxiliary register with legal validity that can be used, if they so wish, to register electronic notifications, without the need to make any additional rules
  • ERES: Entities that use the AOC Consortium's ERES service through EACAT, and therefore already have it regulated as a general register, will also have all the output records generated by the e-NOTUM automatically incorporated into this register
  • Other registers: Entities that have a market registration solution, or that have developed their own custom-made register, have the possibility to integrate the e-NOTUM service with their register through web services, so that all the exit records required to make the e-NOTUM are made on this record

Management of consent

Consent is an act through which the non-obligated interested party expresses his will to receive notification of a certain procedure electronically.

The Administration must always collect the consent of the interested party to be able to notify him electronically, except that it is a matter of obliged subjects listed in art. 14.2 of Law 39/2015, of October 1, or the obligation of electronic notification has been regulated for certain procedures and/or groups, as explained in the previous point.

Consent management is an auxiliary mechanism to the electronic notification process and is therefore not included in the e-NOTUM service. For this reason, it will have to be managed separately by the bodies that carry out electronic notifications, which will have to verify for each file whether the interested party has given their consent to be notified electronically. To carry out this management in an efficient way, it is advisable to update the file management systems in order to indicate in each procedure/stakeholder whether the notification must be made on paper or electronically.

Consent can be given for a specific procedure, or in general for any procedure and, in any case, it is always necessary to ensure that this consent can be revoked at any time by the interested parties.

Modality of consent for a specific procedure

The administration must include in the form that starts the procedure (both on paper and electronically) the option to accept the electronic notification of the acts associated with it, as well as the conditions of the electronic notification service which, among other things, must very clearly detail the mechanisms of access to notifications by the interested party.

It should be noted that the acceptance is exhausted with the notification of the resolution of the procedure and that it is not applicable to any other. For example, if the citizen has marked the option of electronic notification in the application for aid, all acts associated with that specific call will only have to be notified in this way. In future calls, the acceptance will need to be collected again, even though it is the same type of procedure.

General consent modality

In this case, the interested party gives a general consent to receive by electronic means the notifications that the administration must address to him in the future for any procedure. The administration must create a general consent form (both on paper and electronically), so that the interested party can express his will to receive all notifications from the administration electronically. Also in this case, the conditions of the notification service and its access mechanisms must be clearly stated.

Revocation of consent

It should be borne in mind that those interested can, during the processing of the procedure, revoke their consent to the practice of notification by electronic means and that subsequent notifications are carried out by the means provided for in Law 39/2015, of 1 d October To do so, a consent revocation form will need to be enabled.

Example of the Terrassa City Council:

Personal Data Protection

In the forms for collection or revocation of consent, it is always necessary to include a paragraph in which information is provided on how to exercise the rights of access, rectification, cancellation and opposition of the data transferred to the administration.

Example:

Pursuant to the provisions of Organic Law 3/2018, of December 5, on the protection of personal data and the guarantee of digital rights, we inform you that, by completing this application, your personal data will be incorporated and processed in the files owned by………………………………., in order to provide you with the requested services.

Likewise, we inform you of the possibility of exercising, at any time, the exercise of the rights of access, rectification, deletion, opposition, limitation and portability of your personal data, by means of an email addressed to ……………… . or, by writing to …………………….

Adaptation of administrative procedures

Electronic notification is established as preferred by the administrative procedure regulations, except for certain exceptional cases foreseen.

Even when the recipients of the notification are non-obligated subjects, it must be made available to them at the entity's electronic headquarters (article 40.1 Law 39/2015, of October 1).

To incorporate electronic notification in the different administrative procedures, it is necessary to carry out an analysis beforehand to identify all the administrative procedures likely to make use of notifications.

In this analysis, it is advisable to also identify which are the administrative procedures that statistically make more intensive use of the practice of notifications, since in case the organization wants to approach the implementation of electronic notification in a staggered manner and in different phases, it will be interesting to start with those administrative procedures in which electronic notification can have a greater impact in terms of reducing costs and reducing overall processing time.

And, in the same sense, evaluate the possibility of making it mandatory, via regulation, for certain groups.

Once the analysis has been carried out, we must adapt the administrative procedures to accommodate the possibility (or obligation, if it is suitably regulated) to practice notification by electronic means, which among others will include:

  • Modify the application forms to include the box for the collection of consent to receive electronic notifications in case of non-obligated subjects.
Adaptation of the Electronic Headquarters

The electronic Headquarters (or, failing that, the general website) will need to carry out the following updates to accommodate all the functionality related to electronic notifications:

  • Include a section so that those interested can access their electronic notifications. In the case of councils that have a citizen folder, it is recommended that access to electronic notifications is included within this space. Otherwise, it should be a visible link from the home page of the electronic headquarters. In addition, if in order to access electronic notifications you need to have minimum technical requirements in terms of hardware, software and supported digital certificates, these requirements must be clearly stated in this section
  • Include in the electronic processing tool a box to collect the interested party's consent (not required) to receive electronic notifications for that specific procedure. This consent is temporary and expires with the resolution of the procedure
  • Form to collect the interested party's consent to receive electronic notifications for certain types of procedures. This consent is indefinite until expressly revoked and applies to certain types of procedures (for example, building permits, tenders, etc.) that must be indicated on the form
  • Form to revoke the interested party's consent to receive electronic notifications. This form will be useful for the interested party when they want to revoke the consent they have previously given to be notified electronically, either for a specific procedure or for a type of procedure
  • Publish the conditions of the electronic notification service, indicating in particular that the electronic channel for receiving electronic notifications implies full and unreserved acceptance of the electronic notification system in force at the time of signing the request . This indication must be made visible when the interested party's consent to receive electronic notifications is collected, whether it is for a specific procedure, or whether it is for a specific type of procedure

File of notifications and evidence

An important point to bear in mind is that the electronic notifications made, as well as their associated electronic evidence, must be preserved during the preservation time of the files, given that in the event of an attempt to challenge the procedure for lack of notification, it will be necessary to demonstrate that the notification occurred at a certain point in time, and that its content was known, or not, by the interested party at another point in time.

Although the e-NOTUM service keeps the electronic notifications made and their electronic evidence for a specific period of time (90 days), it cannot be guaranteed that this period covers the lifetime of the files in all cases.

For this reason, each administration must provide for the provision of the computer systems necessary for the archiving and preservation of electronic notifications and their associated electronic evidence.

Electronic notification use cases
This section explains the most common use cases in the use of electronic notifications, and includes the actions that must be taken into account in each case and some example models.

Calls for aid, subsidies or social benefits

In calls for aid, subsidies or social benefits, local bodies can include in the regulatory bases the possibility of electronically notifying the resolutions with the consent of the interested party, or the obligation in case this is conveniently regulated for the col ·groups to whom the call is addressed.

In any case, the following adaptations will need to be made:

  • Adapt the regulatory bases of the call, where it is regulated how electronic notifications and access mechanisms will be made, and whether these will be mandatory or require the consent of the interested party. If they are mandatory, it will be necessary to indicate which is the rule that regulates their obligation
  • Modify the application form for the aid, subsidy or social benefit, so that it includes a box in which the interested party's consent to receive electronic notifications is collected (if it is optional). This modification must be made both on the paper form and on the electronic form

Calls for collegiate bodies

The convening of the collegiate bodies (Governing Board, Plenary, etc.) can be notified electronically and it must be guaranteed that it has been made available to you at least 48 hours in advance.

To do so, it is necessary to inform all the members of the collegiate body in advance that the calls will be notified by electronic means, and how they will be able to access them. The administration can opt for voluntary participation and collect the consent of each member to be able to notify them of the call electronically, or they can make it mandatory. In the case of making it mandatory, the administration will need to put in place the necessary means so that all members have the tools and technological resources to be able to access it.

The convening of the collegiate bodies (Governing Board, Plenary, etc.) can be done with the Recipient Group functionality of the e-NOTUM since it allows you to create a list of recipients, in this case, the members of the collegiate body and manage the notifications jointly without the need to process them individually

You can find more information about the call for collegiate bodies on the website of the AOC Consortium.

Examples of regulation of electronic notification

City Hall of Esplugues

Esplugues de Llobregat City Council approved the modification of its electronic administration regulatory ordinance in order to more efficiently manage the electronic notification of its administrative acts. In this sense, with the new article electronic notification could be practiced in any of the administrative procedures processed by the city council. Likewise, it is determined that all standardized forms, to initiate procedures or administrative procedures, will include the possibility for the interested person to indicate contact details so that subsequent notifications and communications are electronic. For its part, article 29.10 determines that the authority to determine the administrative acts, formalities and procedures in which the notification will be exclusively and compulsorily electronic will belong to the Mayor's Office. Additionally, the Municipal Office of electronic administration has approved a regulation for the mandatory establishment of the electronic relationship in the area of action of Esplugues de Llobregat City Council Sant Just Desvern City Council

Sant Just Desvern Town Hall

The Sant Just Desvern City Council approved an Ordinance regulating electronic administration in which electronic notifications are regulated and which establish the cases in which electronic notifications will always be mandatory. In this way, it will not be necessary to manage the consent of the interested party. These cases are:

  1. Mandatory for all legal entities, but companies with fewer than 5 employees may be exempted from this obligation - if they so request.
  2. Mandatory for City Council staff, as long as workers have access to appropriate technological resources in their workplace.
  3. Mandatory for the members of the collegiate bodies of the City Council, who will receive the call by electronic means together with the complementary documentation.
  4. Mandatory for groups of natural persons who, for reasons of economic or technical capacity, professional dedication or other accredited reasons, have guaranteed access to the appropriate technological means and the availability of these means
  5. Mandatory for natural persons who have used electronic means in their communications with the City Council previously, with the same level, or higher, than the technological requirements used previously.

Castellar del Vallès City Council

The Castellar del Vallè City Council approved an electronic administration ordinance . Article 28 of this ordinance regulates notifications by electronic means , which may be made with the consent of the interested party or in a mandatory manner in the cases specified in Annex II of the ordinance.

The ordinance presented an innovation in the management of the consent of the interested party, which is regulated in point 5 of article 28: the administration will be able to understand that the citizen consents to receiving electronic notifications when he provides his contact details by electronic means, that is, your e-mail and/or mobile phone.

City Council of Reus

Reus City Council has drawn up a regulation that regulates the use of notifications by electronic means. As a prominent element, this regulation includes cases in which electronic notifications can be made on a mandatory basis to certain groups of natural and legal persons, as allowed by Law 39/2015, of October 1, on administrative procedure of Public Administrations and Law 26/2010, of 3 August, on the legal regime and procedure of public administrations in Catalonia.

Specifically, the obligation is established in the following cases:

  1. Notification of the convocations of the collegiate bodies of the City Council.
  2. Interdepartmental communications of the city council
  3. Notifications of administrative acts to the staff at the service of the City Council , as long as they have the status of interested parties.
  4. General communications to staff serving the City Council.
  5. Notifications and communications in administrative procurement procedures
  6. Notifications and communications in public competition procedures, such as subsidies, aid, contests, competition bases , and in general in those administrative procedures and communications that are possible, will be made through the use of electronic media The regulatory bases will include the obligation whenever possible due to the recipients.

Government of Catalonia

Order PDA/20/2019, of February 14 , on the implementation of electronic processing, lists the subjects required to relate electronically:

  • Legal entities.
  • Entities without legal personality.
  • Those who carry out a professional activity for which compulsory membership is required, for the procedures and actions they carry out with public administrations in the exercise of the aforementioned professional activity. In any case, property and commercial notaries and registrars are understood to be included in this group.
  • Those who represent an interested party who is obliged to communicate electronically with the Administration.
  • Natural persons who carry out economic, professional activity, individual or self-employed entrepreneurs.
    On the other hand, it is worth highlighting Order PDA/21/2019, of 14 February , which determines the system of electronic notifications of the Administration of the Generalitat of Catalonia and its public sector.

Finally, it is necessary to highlight article 73 of Decree 76/2020, of August 4, on Digital Administration , relating to natural persons obliged to relate electronically with the Administration of the Generalitat in the terms established there .

City Hall of Olot

This town council approved a municipal ordinance for electronic administration and subsequently (in 2018) the regulations for the implementation of electronic notification in the municipality.

In this case, the people who "will be obliged to accept the use of electronic communications and notifications ", in the terms provided for in the rule, are:

  • The staff of Olot City Council and its autonomous bodies.
  • Companies, legal entities, entities without legal personality, professionals with compulsory association for the procedures and actions they carry out with public administrations and in the exercise of the aforementioned professional activity, including notaries and property registrars and mercantile, and their representatives who relate to Olot City Council and its autonomous bodies.
  • Entities that participate in agreements or other types of bilateral agreements with Olot City Council and its autonomous bodies

Vinaixa City Council

It approved the electronic administration ordinance.

Expands the number of obliged subjects, in addition to those of art. 14 of Law 39/2015, of October 1, on common administrative procedure of public administrations,

  • The awardees of the municipal administration
  • The members of the Corporation, of collegiate bodies, management staff, eventual and, in general, the staff at the service of the Corporation

City Council of Garcia

The subjects obliged to receive electronic notifications because they have the obligation to relate by these means with the City Council of Garcia, according to the transparency and electronic administration ordinance of this City Council, coincide with those listed in art.14 of Law 39/2015, of October 1, on common administrative procedure of Public Administrations.

City Council of Artesa de Segre

It approved the transparency and electronic administration ordinance

It follows the model of the Garcia Town Council, that is to say that the subjects obliged to the electronic relationship with the Artesa de Segre Town Council and, therefore, to receive electronic notifications is a reproduction of what is provided for in Law 39/ 2015, of October 1, of common administrative procedure of the Public Administrations.

City Hall of Alella

In line with what is foreseen in Law 39/2015, of October 1, on common administrative procedure of public administrations, the Ordinance on transparency and electronic administration establishes the preferential nature of the practice of electronic notifications, and the 'mandatory of these when the recipient is one of the subjects required to relate exclusively by electronic means with the City Council. Includes:

  • Subjects of art.14 of Law 39/2015, of October 1.
  • Aspirants who appear in City Council's selective processes.
  • Applicants and beneficiaries of subsidies when provided for in the regulatory bases (excluding those of a social nature).
  • Council suppliers
  • Union organizations of the City Council.

Province of Girona

On May 19, 2020, it approved a modification of the General Electronic Administration Ordinance to regulate, among others, aspects related to electronic notifications.

Article 42 of said Ordinance, on the electronic notification system, expressly provides that eNOTUM will be the system used by the Provincial Council.

Related sectoral regulations

Regulations on traffic penalties

Regulations of collegiate bodies

General Regulations:

Local Regime Regulations

Electronic Administration Regulations