Serbia

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Country Snapshot

The GPS Country Snapshot includes 25 sections of information about labor law compliance in Serbia. See a sample of popular sections below.

Termination of Employment

An employer may terminate an employment contract by giving notification in writing with the reason for termination and advice on the legal remedy. The employee may terminate the employment contract by giving at least 15 days' notice to the employer in writing. If the employment is terminated due to lack of performance or skills, the employee must be given advance notice of at least 8 days and not more than 30 days. If a warning has been issued to the employee within the last 6 months that stated how they underperform, how to improve performance, and how long the employee has to improve, then there is no notice requirement for the termination of the employee. In case of economic redundancy, no notice is required but employees are paid severance. 

Work Permits

Foreign citizens who are employed in Serbia must obtain a residence permit and work permit unless an international agreement stipulates otherwise. A long stay visa is required to enter the country and apply for the permits.

A work permit can be issued as personal work permit or work permit. A personal work permit is a work permit that enables a foreign national to freely employ, self-employ and exercise unemployment rights. It is issued if the foreign national has a permanent residence permit, has refugee status, or belongs to a special category. A personal work permit is issued in cases determined by an international agreement and is valid for the period that the foreign national's ID is valid. 

A work permit is a type of work permit issued as:

  • Work permit for employment
  • Work permit for special cases of employment
  • Work permit for self-employment

A foreign national with a work permit can only perform the jobs for which they have received a permit in Serbia. 

Students who are foreign nationals may obtain a work permit as long as the employer follows the requirements listed above. However, the student may not work more than 20 hours a week or 80 hours a month while school is in session.

Employers who have their headquarters in a member state of the European Union, the European Economic Area, or the Swiss Confederation may send an employee who is not an EU citizen to work without a work permit provided that the employee has a valid residence and work permit for the member state which the employer is headquartered. 

Paid Annual Leave

Serbia grants a maternity and childcare leave totaling 365 days, starting at the earliest 45 days, and as necessary, 28 days before the expected date of childbirth. Maternity leave lasts up to 3 months from the day of childbirth. If a mother is unable to take leave or dies, the father of the child becomes eligible for the leave. Maternity leave is still granted in case of stillbirth or the child dies before the end of the maternity leave. 

During maternity leave and childcare leave, an employed woman, or father of a child, has the right to compensation equal to average salary in the last 18 months. The minimum maternity benefit is the minimum monthly wage. 

Pregnant employees have the right to paid leave from work during the day in order to perform health examinations related to pregnancy, provided they inform their employers in a timely manner. They cannot be employed at night or in overtime work or in jobs that endanger their life. 

Working Hours

Full time work is 40 hours per week or 8 hours a day. A general act can establish that shorter work week than 40 hours per week, but not shorter than 36 hours per week. For employees under 18 years of age, working hours must not exceed 35 hours a week or 8 hours a day. For employees working in particularly difficult, strenuous and health-damaging jobs, working hours are reduced in proportion to the harmful effect of working conditions on employees' health and work ability, and by a maximum of 10 hours per week. 

The schedule of working hours within the working week is determined by employers.

Employers can also redistribute working time of employees such that in a period of 6 months their average is not longer than the contracted working time, when the nature of the activity requires it. In case of redistribution of working hours, working hours cannot last longer than 60 hours per week. Redistribution of working time is not considered overtime. 

Maternity Leave

Serbia grants a maternity and childcare leave totaling 365 days, starting at the earliest 45 days, and as necessary, 28 days before the expected date of childbirth. Maternity leave lasts up to 3 months from the day of childbirth. If a mother is unable to take leave or dies, the father of the child becomes eligible for the leave. Maternity leave is still granted in case of stillbirth or the child dies before the end of the maternity leave. 

During maternity leave and childcare leave, an employed woman, or father of a child, has the right to compensation equal to average salary in the last 18 months. The minimum maternity benefit is the minimum monthly wage. 

Pregnant employees have the right to paid leave from work during the day in order to perform health examinations related to pregnancy, provided they inform their employers in a timely manner. They cannot be employed at night or in overtime work or in jobs that endanger their life. 

Minimum Wage

All employees in Serbia have the right to a minimum wage for standard performance and time spent at work. Minimum wage is determined by the decision of the Social-Economic Council after negotiations with trade unions. If the Social and Economic Council does not make a decision within 15 days from the date of the start of the negotiations, the government makes a decision on the level of the minimum wage within the next 15 days.

Minimum wage in 2024 is set to RSD 271 (Serbian dinars) per hour. 

Country Profile

The GPS Country Profile contains detailed information on over 60 topics related to labor law compliance within Serbia.
  • Type of Employment Relationship
  • Permanent Employment
  • Fixed-Term or Specific-Purpose Contracts
  • Temporary Employment Contracts
  • Part-time Employment
  • Young Worker Employment
  • Vendors and Independent Contractors
  • Types of Contracts
  • Probationary Period
  • Termination of the Contract of Employment
  • Grounds for Termination
  • Notice of Dismissal
  • Fair Dismissal
  • Redundancy
  • Unfair Dismissal
  • Suspension of Contract of Employment
  • Severance Benefits
  • Hours of Work
  • Work Week and Timekeeping
  • Night Work and Shift Work
  • Overtime
  • Remote Work
  • Required Time Off
  • Public Holidays
  • Annual Leave
  • Sick Leave
  • Maternity
  • Other Forms of Leave
  • Social Insurance and Retirement
  • Social Security Contribution
  • National Retirement Scheme
  • Dependents’/Survivors Benefit
  • Life and Disability Insurance/Benefit
  • Statutory Allowances
  • Compensation and Benefits
  • Minimum Wage (Basic Wage)
  • Bonuses, Profit Sharing and Other Compensation
  • Medical Insurance
  • Work Environment
  • Workplace Safety and Health
  • Prohibition of Discrimination
  • Prohibition of Harassment
  • Data Protection and Privacy
  • Whistleblowers and Retaliation
  • Workers’ representation in the organization
  • Freedom of Association
  • Registration and Recognition of Unions
  • Trade Union Personality
  • Collective Bargaining and Agreements
  • Disputes and Settlements
  • Strikes and Lockouts
  • Unfair Labor Practices
  • Taxation of Compensation and Benefits
  • Income Tax
  • Taxation of Employee Benefits
  • Tax Filing and Payment Procedures
  • Double Tax Relief and Tax Treaties
  • Visas and Work Permits
  • Visas
  • Work Permits and Residence Permits

 Country Snapshot

Get the full Country Snapshot with 25 sections of information about labor law in Serbia.