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LEGAL ACTS OF THE REPUBLIC OF LATVIA
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The translation of this document is outdated.
Translation validity: 18.11.2009.–15.11.2012.
Amendments not included: 08.11.2012., 26.04.2018.

The Saeima1 has adopted and
the President has proclaimed the following Law:

Law On the National Flag of Latvia

Chapter I
General Provisions

Section 1. Purpose of This Law

The purpose of this Law is to prescribe uniform principles for the use of the national flag of Latvia.

Section 2. Description of the National Flag of Latvia

(1) The national flag of Latvia is carmine with a white horizontal stripe.

(2) The red-white-red stripe ratio of the national flag of Latvia is 2:1:2.

(3) The width to length ratio of the National flag of Latvia is 1:2.

(4) The red-white-red ratio of the national flag of Latvia, as well as the width to length ratio irrespective of the dimensions of the flag, shall conform to the sample indicated in Annex 1 to this Law.

(5) The national flag of Latvia is a Latvian State symbol.

Section 3. General Provisions for the Use of the National Flag of Latvia and Prohibition on the Use of the National Flag of Latvia

(1) The national flag of Latvia shall be used in the cases and in accordance with the procedures prescribed by this Law and other regulatory enactments, guaranteeing it due respect.

(2) It is prohibited to use the national flag of Latvia:

1) on buildings, which are in a state of critical disrepair;

2) on buildings, which are undergoing repair of their facades; and

3) in other inappropriate places and circumstances.

(3) It shall be prohibited to use a damaged, faded, dirty or otherwise inappropriate national flag of Latvia.

(4) A national flag of Latvia which is unfit for use shall be destroyed in a dignified manner.

Chapter II
The Order of Precedence, by Which the National Flag of Latvia Shall Be Used Together with Other Flags

Section 4. The Order of Precedence, by Which the National Flag of Latvia Shall Be Used Together with Other Flags

(1) If other flags are used together with the national flag of Latvia, they shall be arranged in the following order:

1) the national flag of Latvia;

2) the national flag of another country;

3) the flag of an international public organisation;

4) the Presidential Standard of Latvia;

5) the Standard of the Speaker of the Saeima;

6) the Standard of the Prime Minister;

7) a Ministerial Standard;

8) the Standard of the Minister for Defence;

9) the flag of an institution of another country;

10) the Flag of the Commander of the National Armed Forces;

11) the Flag of a Component of the National Armed Forces;

12) the flag of an administrative territory and the territorial divisional units thereof;

13) the flag of an international non-governmental organisation;

14) other flags.

(2) If a number of other state or international public organisation flags are used together with the national flag of Latvia, they shall be arranged in the following manner:

1) at an event on a Latvian scale flags of the one type, for example, national flags, shall be arranged in alphabetical order of the name of the country in Latvian;

2) at an event in Latvia organised on an international scale flags of the one type, for example, national flags, shall be arranged in alphabetical order of the name of the country in English or in the official working language of the event.

(3) If an international public organisation has organised an event in Latvia, the national flag of Latvia shall be used in accordance with Latvia's place in the approved order of precedence of such an organisation.

(4) Consultations regarding the procedures for use of the national flag of Latvia in accordance with international protocol norms shall be provided by the State Protocol of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Chapter III
Use of the National Flag of Latvia and Other Flags on Buildings

Section 5. The Permanent Placing of the National Flag of Latvia on Buildings

(1) The national flag of Latvia shall be permanently placed:

1) on the Tower of the Holy Spirit of the Rīga Castle;

2) on the Jūrmala residence of the President of Latvia;

3) on the main building of the Saeima;

4) on the Cabinet of Ministers Building;

5) on ministry buildings;

6) on courthouses;

7) on the buildings of the Office of the Prosecutor General and Ombudsman;

8) on the Joint Headquarters of the National Armed Forces building;

9) on the Head Office building of the Bank of Latvia and on the buildings of branches of the Bank of Latvia;

10) on the council buildings of cities of the Republic and counties;

11) on border control point and border crossing point buildings;

12) on Diplomatic and Consular representation buildings of Latvia, if this is technically possible and it is not contradictory to the regulatory enactments of the host country and diplomatic protocol traditions;

13) on educational institution buildings.

(2) The national flag of Latvia may also be permanently placed on other buildings, guaranteeing them the proper respect.

(3) If the buildings referred to in Paragraph one of this Section are undergoing major repairs or the facades of these buildings are being repaired, a decision regarding the relocation of the national flag of Latvia shall be taken by the head of the relevant institution referred to in Paragraph one of this Section.

Section 6. The Principles for Using the State National Flag of Latvia and Other Flags

(1) If another flag is used together with the national flag of Latvia on the facade of a building, the national flag of Latvia shall be positioned on the left side, but the other flag - on the right side, when looking at the facade of the building (Paragraph 1 of Annex 2 to this Law).

(2) If a number of other flags are used together with the national flag of Latvia on the facade of a building, the national flag of Latvia shall be placed on the left side, but the other flags - in the protocol precedence prescribed by this Law to the right of the national flag of Latvia, when looking at the facade of the building (Paragraph 2 of Annex 2 to this Law).

(3) If other flags are used together with the national flag of Latvia on flag poles, they shall be arranged in the following order:

1) the national flag of Latvia shall be placed at the head of the row, but the other flags - in the protocol precedence prescribed by this Law on the right of the national flag of Latvia, when looking at the row of flag poles ( Paragraph 2 of Annex 2 to this Law);

2) the national flag of Latvia shall be placed at the head of the row and at the end, but the other flags - in the protocol precedence prescribed by this Law on the right of the national flag of Latvia, when looking at the row of flag poles ( Paragraph 2 of Annex 3 to this Law).

(4) If the flags referred to in Section 4, Paragraph one, Clauses 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 or 13 of this Law are used together with the national flag of Latvia, their width thereof must conform with the width of the national flag of Latvia.

Section 7. Use of the National Flag of Latvia on Days of Holidays, Commemoration and Celebration

(1) The national flag of Latvia shall be placed on public buildings, buildings of legal persons governed by private law and associations of persons, as well as on residential buildings, on 1 May, 4 May, 11 November and 18 November.

(2) The national flag of Latvia in mourning presentation shall be placed on public buildings, buildings of legal persons governed by private law and associations of persons, as well as on residential buildings, on 25 March, 14 June, 17 June, 4 July and on the first Sunday of December.

(3) The national flag of Latvia shall also be used on other occasions prescribed by the Cabinet or local governments.

(4) The national flag of Latvia may also be used at folk, religious and family celebrations, commemoration days and other occasions, guaranteeing it proper respect.

Section 8. Use of the National Flag of Latvia on the Day of Restoration of the Lithuanian State and the Estonian Day of Independence

(1) On the Day of Restoration of the Lithuanian State - 16 February - the national flag of Lithuania shall be placed next to the national flag of Latvia on the Tower of the Holy Spirit of the Rīga Castle, on the main building of the Saeima and the Cabinet of Ministers Building.

(2) On the Estonian Day of Independence - 24 February - the national flag of Estonia shall be placed next to the national flag of Latvia on the Tower of the Holy Spirit of the Rīga Castle, on the main building of the Saeima and the Cabinet of Ministers Building.

Section 9. Use of the National Flag of Latvia on an Election Day and a Referendum Day

The national flag of Latvia shall be placed on buildings, where polling stations have been installed:

1) on a Saiema election day;

2) on an election day for Republican city and county councils;

3) on a European Parliament election day; and

4) on a Referendum day.

Chapter IV
Use of the National Flag of Latvia in Premises

Section 10. Use of the National Flag of Latvia in Premises

(1) If the national flag of Latvia is used together with other flags at a marked place within a room (at a console, microphone, table) during international negotiations, during the signing of interstate, intergovernmental, interdepartmental agreements or during a press conference, it shall be placed:

1) behind the right shoulder of the official of the Latvian State, but the other flags - in the left shoulder direction according to the protocol order;

2) behind the official of the Latvian State, but the flag of another state or international public organisation - behind the relevant official (Paragraph 5 of Annex 2 to this Law). The guest during the time of the meeting at the marked place shall be on the right hand side of the official of the Latvian State.

(2) If the national flag of Latvia is used with other flags in an unmarked place within a room, it shall be placed:

1) at the left hand side of the row, but the other flags - in the protocol precedence prescribed by this Law on the right of it, when looking at the row of flags ( Paragraph 2 of Annex 2 to this Law);

2) at the head and end of the row of flags, but in the middle - the other flags in the protocol precedence prescribed by this Law from the left to the right (Paragraph 3 of Annex 2 to this Law);

3) in the middle, but the other flags - in alphabetical order according to the name of the state on both sides of the national flag of Latvia (Paragraph 4 of Annex 2 to this Law), in accordance with the requirements of Section 4, Paragraph two of this Law.

(3) The principles for the use of the national flag of Latvia as prescribed in Paragraphs one and two of this Section may also be used during private business negotiations, entering contracts, during press conferences and other events.

Section 11. Permanent Use of the National Flag of Latvia in the Working Premises of State Officials

(1) The national flag of Latvia shall be permanently placed:

1) in the office of the President of Latvia;

2) in the office of the Speaker of the Saeima and the Saeima Chamber;

3) in the Cabinet meeting room;

4) in the offices of the Prime Minister and other members of the Cabinet;

5) in the offices of the Chief Justice of the Constitutional Court and of the judges of the Constitutional Court, as well as in the Constitutional Court's courtroom;

6) in the offices of the Chief Judges and the chairpersons of courthouses:

7) in the office of the Prosecutor General and Ombudsman; and

8) in the offices of the heads of diplomatic and consular representations.

(2) The national flag of Latvia shall be placed in the offices of the officials of the Latvian State specified in Paragraph one of this Section in accordance with the principles referred to in Section 10 of this Law.

Section 12. Placement of the National Flag of Latvia on a Table

(1) During international negotiations, during the signing of interstate, intergovernmental, interdepartmental agreements or during a press conference the Latvia's representative may use a proportionally reduced national flag of Latvia on the table, placing it in the following way:

1) during international negotiations - in front of the head of the delegation to the right;

2) during the signing of interstate, intergovernmental, interdepartmental agreements - in front of the person to the right, who is signing the document; and

3) during a press conference - in front of the person to the right, who is presenting information at the press conference.

(2) During an international event, for example, a conference, meeting, at working group meetings, the national flag of Latvia regardless of the position of the person may be placed in front of the Latvia's representative to the right.

Chapter V
The Use and Mounting of the National Flag of Latvia on the Official Car of a State Official

Section 13. The Use of the National Flag of Latvia on the Official Car of a State Official

The national flag of Latvia shall be used on an official car:

1) by the President of Latvia, Chair of the Saeima, Prime Minister and the Minister for Foreign Affairs, when performing official duties in foreign states, if it is not contradictory to the regulatory enactments of the host country and diplomatic protocol traditions;

2) by the heads of diplomatic and consular representations, when performing official duties in foreign states, if it is not contradictory to the regulatory enactments of the host country and diplomatic protocol traditions; and

3) during a visit by an official of a foreign state in Latvia in accordance with the requirements of Section 14, Paragraph two of this Law.

Section 14. The Mounting of the National Flag of Latvia on the Official Car of a State Official

(1) A proportionally reduced national flag shall be mounted on the front right wing of the official car of a State official.

(2) If together with the State official of Latvia referred to in Section 13, Clause 1 of this Law there is an official of a corresponding rank from another state or international public organisation, a proportionally reduced national flag of Latvia shall be mounted on the front left wing of the car, but the flag of the other state or international public organisation - on the front right wing of the car corresponding to the place of the official in the car.

Chapter VI
Use of the National Flag of Latvia in Cases of Mourning

Section 15. The National Flag in Mourning Presentation

(1) If the national flag of Latvia is to be raised in mourning presentation, a black ribbon shall be attached above the flag, the width of which shall be 1/20 of the width of the flag and the length shall conform with the width.

(2) A national flag of Latvia shall be lowered at half mast without a mourning ribbon.

(3) At locations, where the national flag of Latvia is used together with other flags, the mourning presentation shall only be used with the national flag of Latvia.

Section 16. Use of the National Flag During a Funeral Ceremony

(1) The national flag of Latvia may be used during a funeral ceremony. In such case it shall be used in mourning presentation, except for the case referred to in Paragraph two of this Section.

(2) During a funeral ceremony the coffin may be draped with the national flag of Latvia. The national flag of Latvia shall be removed from the coffin prior to lowering the coffin into the grave or prior to cremation of the deceased.

Chapter VII
Use of the National Flag of Latvia for Decorative Purposes

Section 17. Use of the National Flag of Latvia for Decorative Purposes

(1) The national flag of Latvia may be used for decorative purposes, guaranteeing it proper respect.

(2) If the national flag of Latvia is used for decorative purposes, the width to length proportion may differ from the standard prescribed in Section 2 of this law, however the colour tones and the red-white-red ratio of the stripes prescribed in regulatory enactments shall be retained.

(3) If the national flag of Latvia is used for decorative purposes, it retains the status of a Latvian State emblem.

Section 18. Pennant of the National Flag of Latvia

(1) The pennant of the national flag of Latvia is a trapezoidal fabric ribbon in the colours and colour proportions of the national flag of Latvia. The ratio of the width to the length of the pennant of the national flag of Latvia shall conform with the proportions indicated in Annex 3 to this Law.

(2) The pennant of the national flag of Latvia shall have the same protection under the law as the national flag of Latvia.

(3) The pennant of the national flag of Latvia shall not be used on a flag pole on the facade of a building.

(4) The pennant of the national flag of Latvia may be used by guaranteeing it proper respect.

(5) The pennant of the national flag of Latvia does not replace the national flag of Latvia.

Section 19. Use of the Depiction of the National Flag of Latvia

(1) A depiction of the national flag of Latvia may be used by guaranteeing it proper respect.

(2) It is prohibited to use a depiction of the national flag of Latvia as a trademark or service mark.

(3) Paragraph two of this Section shall not apply to the utilisation of the colours and colour proportions of the national flag of Latvia as elements of trademarks and service marks.

Chapter VIII
Procedures for the Monitoring of the Use of the National Flag of Latvia and Application of the Law

Section 20. Liability Regarding Violation of the Regulations for the Use of the National Flag of Latvia

A person responsible for desecration of the national flag of Latvia and showing open disrespect towards it, as well as violation of the regulations for the use of the national flag of Latvia, shall be subject to the liability as set out by the law.

Section 21. Opinion Regarding the Compliance of the National Flag of Latvia, Pennant of the National Flag of Latvia and Depiction of the National Flag of Latvia to the Requirements of Regulatory Enactments

An opinion regarding the compliance of the national flag of Latvia, pennant of the national flag of Latvia and depiction of the national flag of Latvia to the requirements of regulatory enactments shall be provided by the Latvian State Heraldry Commission.

Section 22. Procedures for the Application of the Law On the National Flag of Latvia

(1) The Cabinet shall prescribe:

1) the tones in accordance with the material and technique of the national flag of Latvia, pennant of the national flag and depiction of the national flag, taking into consideration the opinion of the Latvian State Heraldry Commission;

2) the time for raising and the arrangement, height and the procedures for using the national flag of Latvia and the pennant of the national flag of Latvia, as well as the procedures for the preparation and presentation of the flag staff and flag pole;

3) procedures for the use of the National Flag of Latvia on Latvian ships;

4) cases, in which the national flag of Latvia shall be used together with the flag of another state or international public organisation, as well as the procedures for the use thereof.

(2) The procedure for the use of the national flag of Latvia by the National Armed Forces, as well as in military parades and ceremonies, shall be determined by the Minister for Defence.

Transitional Provisions

1. With the coming into force of this Law, the Law On the National Flag of Latvia (Latvijas Republikas Saeimas un Ministru Kabineta Ziņotājs, 1995, No. 2; 2000, No. 12; 2001, No. 5; 2004, No. 12; 2009, No. 3) is repealed.

2. By 1 May 2010 the Cabinet shall issue the regulations referred to in Section 22, Paragraph one, Clauses 1, 2 and 4 of this Law.

3. Until the day of the coming into force of the Cabinet regulations referred to in Section 22, Paragraph one, Clause 2 of this Law, but not longer than until 1 May 2010, the Cabinet Regulation No. 412 of 25 September 2001, Application of the Provisions of the Law On the National Flag of Latvia, shall be in force, insofar as it is not in contradiction to this Law.

4. Until the day of the coming into force of the Cabinet regulations referred to in Section 22, Paragraph one, Clause 3 of this Law, but not longer than until 1 January 2010, the Cabinet Regulation No. 252 of 9 July 1996, Regulations Regarding the Application of the Procedures for the Use of the National Flag of Latvia on Latvian Ships, shall be in force, insofar as it is not in contradiction to this Law.

This Law shall come into force on the day following the proclamation thereof.

This Law has been adopted by the Saeima on 29 October 2009.

President V. Zatlers

Rīga, 17 November 2009

 

Law On the National Flag of Latvia
Annex 1

Ratio of the Width to the Length of the National Flag of Latvia

The red-white-red stripe ratio of the national flag of Latvia

 

Law On the National Flag of Latvia
Annex 2

Flag Placement

1. Placement of a flag on a building, when looking at the facade of the building.

2. Placement of a flag on a building, when looking at the facade of the building. Flag placement on a row of flagpoles. Flag placement within premises, when looking at a row of flags.

3. Flag placement on flag poles, when looking at a row of flag poles. Flag placement within premises, when looking at a row of flags.

4. Flag placement within premises, when looking at a row of flags.

5. Flag placement at a marked place within a room (at a console, microphone, table).

 

Law On the National Flag of Latvia
Annex 3

Ratio of the Width to the Length of the Pennant of the National Flag of Latvia

Ratio of the width to the length of the pennant of the national flag of Latvia


1 The Parliament of the Republic of Latvia

Translation © 2012 Valsts valodas centrs (State Language Centre)

 
Document information
Status:
In force
in force
Issuer: Saeima Type: law Adoption: 29.10.2009.Entry into force: 18.11.2009.Theme:  State symbolism, state languagePublication: "Latvijas Vēstnesis", 182 (4168), 17.11.2009.
Language:
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