Yesterday, Monday 24 January 2011, the Council adopted new rules in combating late payment in commercial transactions.
The new directive introduces for the first time penalties against local authorities that pay their bills late (beyond 30 days of the date of invoice), with a few exemptions for health care. Due to the important role healthcare play in the social infrastructure, the Directive establishes that Member States should be able to grant public entities providing healthcare a certain amount of flexibility in meeting their commitments. For that purpose, Member States should be allowed to extend the payment period up to a maximum of 60 calendar days. However, the Directive states that Member States should make every effort to ensure that payments in the healthcare sector are made within the statutory payment periods.
For more information about the Directive please see: