According to the Bulgarian Coat-of-Arms Act, Article 2, Paragraph 1:
"The Coat of Arms of the Republic of Bulgaria shall depict a crowned gold lion rampant on a dark gules shield. Above the shield there shall be a large crown whose archetype shall be the crowns of the rulers of the Second Bulgarian Empire, with five crosses and another cross on top of the crown. The shield shall be held by two crowned gold lions rampant, standing on two crossed oak branches with acorns. [The three lions represent the three parts of Bulgaria: Moesia, Thrace, and Macedonia.] Under the shield there shall be a white band, lined with the national colors, containing the text 'Saedinenieto pravi silata' ['Union Produces Strength']."
Article 165 of the Constitution of the Republic of Bulgaria states that "the State Seal shall depict the Coat of Arms of the Republic of Bulgaria."
The coat-of-arms was adopted by the Bulgarian National Assembly on the 31st of July, 1997, only after the Union of the Democratic Forces (UDF) and its allies received the majority of seats in the National Assembly, thus overruling the Socialists who blocked the revival of the coat-of-arms used by the Kingdom of Bulgaria before the 9th of September 1944. According to the Socialists, a crown put on the shield equaled monarchy, which Bulgaria is not. Therefore, in 1991, the Socialist-controlled Grand National Assembly passed a constitutional text that said "The Coat of Arms of the Republic of Bulgaria shall depict a gold lion rampant on a dark gules shield," i.e. no crowns, and only one lion.