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List of legal acts that companies needs to adopt in Serbia

Sep 25, 2018

HBL > News > Article > List of legal acts that companies needs to adopt in Serbia

General legal acts of companies having business in Serbia are documents that regulate and define the scope of business of that company. They define the rules of conduct, the rights and obligations of employees, the way the organization functions, the description and systematization of jobs, hierarchies and so on.

What general acts will be defined depends on the size of the legal entity and the activity, i.e. it depends on the activity of the company involved. They are drafted after the company is established and registered in the BRA (Business Registration Agency).

Certain regulations are mandatory for all companies, but there are also other regulations which legal entities are not obligated to draft. It is recommended that they also have these other regulations, in order to better determine the precise functioning of the business in all segments within the company.

Required regulations include:

  • Employee handbook,
  • Regulations on systematization and organization of workplaces,
  • Regulations on the behavior of employers and employees in relation to prevention and protection against abuse at work,
  • Risk Assessment Act,
  • Work safety and health regulations,
  • A training program for the employees in the field of safety and health at work,
  • Fire protection policy,
  • Rulebook on internal alerts.


Employment relations


Rights, obligations, and responsibilities in the field of employment relations are defined by:

  • a Collective Agreement,
  • an Employee handbook,
  • a Contract of Employment.

The Collective Agreement and the Employee handbook are general legal acts of the company and they are part of the Labor Law, with obliges the employer to meet certain working conditions.

As a rule, all rights, obligations, and responsibilities are defined by a collective agreement when the conditions are met, and it can be general, special and individual. If the conditions are not met, the Employee handbook is concluded.


Employee handbook


An employee handbook also regulates the rights, obligations, and responsibilities arising from employment relations and it is adopted by the competent body of the company or an authorized person. It contains the rights and working conditions depending on the needs of the employer, but it must not reduce the rights of workers, create unfavorable working conditions, and everything rest that is prohibited by the Labor Law.

Employee handbook contains the following regulations:

  • earnings – basic, increased, earnings per performance, minimum wage, salary compensation, payment deadlines,
  • costs to which the employee has rights – compensation for transportation to work and back, hot meal allowance, recourse, travel allowance, deadlines for payment of expenses,
  • other benefits to which the employee has rights – jubilee award, retirement benefits, solidarity aid, compensation for the cost of funeral services, expenses for gifts for children of employees, compensation during sick leave and maternity leave,
  • rules on the prohibition of competition and compensation for non-compliance of the same – the disclosure of information on the business, business secrets, technological knowledge and the like,
  • working hours, holidays, paid leave,
  • rules on compensation for damages (if incurred during the work and in connection with work),
  • termination of employment – dismissal by an employee, by employer, consensual termination, referral to another employer, removal from work,
  • other.

An employment contract is an individual document which is signed when establishing an employment relationship with an employer and is signed by an employee and a legal entity (chairman, authorized person).


Regulations on systematization and organization of workplaces


These regulations establish:

  • name and type of jobs (workplace),
  • work that is being done,
  • required knowledge – type and level of qualification, education,
  • necessary work experience,
  • number of executors for performing work,
  • other conditions for working on these tasks – foreign languages, skills and the like.

The company is legally required to adopt these regulations when it has at least 10 employees. It can also adopt it if there are fewer employees, but it is not required. The regulations are drafted by the chairman, entrepreneur, and competent body or authorized person.


Regulations on the behavior of employers and employees in relation to prevention and protection against abuse at work


This regulation relates to certain codes of conduct for employers and employees in relation to the prevention and protection against abuse at work, as well as sexual harassment. The rules of conduct concern persons of both male and female sex.

The employer has the obligation to create conditions for smooth running and normal work, to organize work and conditions where there will be no abuse of employees.

The company must provide a pleasant work environment and atmosphere – one in which everyone will respect each other and cooperate. It must develop awareness among its employees about mutual respect, cooperation, and teamwork.

It should provide a good example of its behavior and enable employees to publicly express their opinions, suggestions and so on.

Employees must be informed, notified and trained to identify, report and prevent abuse. They also have to refrain from behaviors that are considered abusive. They are also obliged to behave decently and contribute to the discovery and prevention of abuse.


Risk assessment act


The Risk Assessment Act is the basic activity in the field of occupational safety and health. It contains:

  • description of the work process,
  • assessment of the risk of possible injuries in the workplace and in the work environment,
  • measures for reducing risk, in order to improve safety and protection at work.

Risk assessment is the recording and assessment of all factors that can lead to workplace dangers, in the work environment, or may cause injury, illness or damage to the employees’ health. The actual causes of the injury are determined, the existing causes can be eliminated and the risk of new ones may be reduced – based on the risk assessment.

The Risk Assessment Act is a specific document and must be different for each company, as well as for each workplace. It is required regardless of the activity, the number of jobs and the number of employees.


Work safety and health regulations


The Work Safety and Health Regulations is a document in which the employer establishes rights, obligations, and responsibilities related to occupational health and safety. It is most often defined by a collective agreement, a special general act or a contract of employment.

If the employer has up to 10 employees, then the rights, obligations, and responsibilities are regulated by the employment contract. If he or she has more than 10 employees, then he or she must have Work safety and health regulations.

All companies have a legal obligation to appoint a person in charge of safety and security at work, who will perform tasks in this field.


A training program for the employees in the field of safety and health at work


A training program for the employees in the field of safety and health at work is a document and a general act that the employer must implement. The company is obliged to implement this program in order to theoretically and practically train and prepare employees for safe and healthy occupation.

It is possible to organize employees’ training through a person in charge of safety, and a licensed agency engaged in these tasks can be hired.

Training is done when:

  • employee relations are established – at the workplace,
  • moving to other jobs,
  • new technology, new tools for work, new equipment for work are introduced
  • there are changes in the work process.


Fire protection policy


A fire protection policy is a general act of a company that prescribes mandatory measures and operations related to the protection from the occurrence of a fire or explosion.

The regulation contains measures and plans for fire protection; organization, planning and their implementation; rights and responsibilities of the company and all employees; training on regulations and behavior in case of fire; firefighting units; technical equipment; accident control; preventive measures; responsibility; penal provisions and other issues.

All legal entities are obliged to:

  • organize training for employees to learn about and implement preventive measures in the event of a fire,
  • appoint an expert to implement preventive fire protection measures,
  • provide adequate equipment and fire extinguishers,
  • make a plan for evacuation and instructions for behavior in case of fire (clearly marked).

Companies are obliged to appoint an expertly trained person in charge of implementing adequate fire protection. Employees must be familiarized with all dangers, behavioral patterns and protection measures, in case of fire they must be involved in extinguishing the fire.

A good fire protection plan is developed by experts and consultants specializing in fire protection and the development of the regulations.


Rule-book on internal alerts


The Rulebook on Internal Alerts is a document defining the rules of conduct:

  • which information violates the business rules,
  • which behavior is not allowed,
  • what violates human rights, authority,
  • information that may be life-threatening or hazardous to safety, health, environment,
  • other.

An employer with more than 10 employees is obliged to have an authorized person who will receive information and conduct proceedings on these issues.

Other acts a company is required to adopt:

  • Work Discipline and Employee Behavior Act,
  • Accounting Regulations,
  • Policy on the Inventory of Assets,
  • A Waste Management Plan.


Work discipline and employee behavior act


The company may establish specific rules of conduct that must be respected during work with a special act. These rules are also related to the fulfillment of all contractual obligations.

The employer must notify and inform the employee of all rules before entering into employment relations. The employee is obliged to respect them after signing the employment contract, otherwise, he or she may be dismissed.


Accounting regulations


Accounting Regulations is a general act that contains:

  • guidelines and procedures for conducting business books and posting changes,
  • guidelines for recording and detecting misdiagnosed changes,
  • movement of business documentation and delivery deadlines for processing,
  • accounting policies, a value of assets, rights, and obligations,
  • responsible persons, a manner of preparing financial statements,
  • internal control and data storage,
  • other.

It is recommended that a bookkeeping agency is consulted on all issues regarding this regulation.


Policy on the inventory of assets


The policy on the inventory of assets is a document that contains information on equipment, inventory, organization, and implementation of the inventory. This policy determines the period of performance of the inventory, duration, and deadlines for submission of the report. After the census, the real situation must be settled with the bookkeeping.


A waste management plan


The waste management plan defines:

  • type, quantity, and origin of the waste,
  • the method of collecting waste,
  • locations, available capacities,
  • waste reduction plan,
  • other.

Legal entities that produce more than 100 tons of harmless waste annually or companies that throw away more than 200 kilograms of hazardous waste must have a waste plan.

All general acts can be defined and adopted independently by the employer, but this is not always a good solution. Some acts are very specific, complex and require professional legal counseling. Some of them require good judgment and a high level of expertise in specific areas, so it is better to hire an expert.