Legal Aspects of Constructing and Operating Tourism Establishments in Iran – Chapter four
After the construction of tourism establishments comes to an end, an Operating Permit must be acquired in accordance with the provisions of “the regulations of establishment, modification, completion, grading and pricing of tourism facilities and supervision thereof”. Holder of the permit for construction of tourism facilities must inform the Organization about finalization and construction of the pertinent establishments in order to acquire the Temporary Operating Permit. The Organization shall then issue a temporary permit merely valid for six months. During this period, the permit holder must acquire the Standard Certificate of Tourism Services and the Organization shall issue Operating Permit for units that have acquired such certificates. The Operating Permit shall be valid for three years after issuance and may be extended by the Organization through reevaluation of the Standard Certificate for Tourism Services.
The issued Operating Permit shall cover all activities of that unit. In fact, after the construction, i.e. of a hotel, and obtaining the pertinent Operating Permit, either the investor and permit holder shall operate the installations, or operation thereof is completely or partially transferred to others through an agreement. Depending on the subject of activity and amount of engaged investment, it is vital to use the assistance of experienced legal experts in regard to conclusion of such agreements. This is in part due to the fact that even if the activities are assigned to others, the responsibility of administration lies merely with the holder of the permit. It should also be noted that violation of governing legal provisions might lead to suspension of the Operating Permit or even Invalidation thereof.
Furthermore, in case of transferring to others, the investor must verify whether they meet the requirements provided by Article 7 of the above mentioned By-Law. Similarly, if the investor operates the hotel, he/she must also meet the requirements provided by Article 7 which include:
When entering into total or partial assignment agreement in regard to operating the hotel, the investor must take into consideration whether the assignee has the above certificates and if they do not meet these requirements, special arrangements should be made in order to compensate the potential losses incurred by the investor. As previously mentioned, this is largely due to the fact that, as regards the activities of the hotel, the investor shall be liable in relation with the Organization.
Moreover, in case the tourism establishments are jointly owned, the owners must introduce an official representative. The Operating Permit shall be issued solely in the name of representative. This delicate issue also contains diverse legal matters which require careful consideration and attention of expert legal advisors.
For instance, one of the possible presumptions is the death of permit holder. This issue can affect both the partial or total transfer of hotel activities and also the joint ownership regarding tourism establishment and contains different legal matters that must be taken into account before entering into any agreements. According to Note of Article 7, in case the holder of the permit passes away, the heirs or the legal representative of the deceased must apply for issuance of the Operating Permit again.
In accordance with the above-mentioned By-Law, there is the possibility of transferring the Operating Permit or transformation and modification of the type of operation of tourism facilities in which both cases concession contracts signed with other parties should be considered and its anticipation should be noted in such contracts. Also, the holder of the Operating Permit must introduce the person who is responsible for running the hotel. According to the By-Law, Conditions of the manager are as follows:
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