Understanding Employment Norms in Serbia: A Comprehensive Guide
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Hiring in Serbia? Read on to find out the employment norms (like taxes, payroll and benefits) and EOR (Employer on Record) norms in Serbia.

Employment Norms in Serbia

Serbia is a country with a developing economy, and employment norms play a vital role in shaping its labor market. Understanding these norms is crucial for both employers and employees to navigate the legal requirements and make informed decisions. From working hours to leave entitlements, this article provides an overview of the essential employment norms in Serbia.

General Information:

  • The Serbia currency is the Serbian dinar (RSD).
  • Belgrade is the capital of Serbia.
  • Serbian is the official language of Serbia. Documentation can be in Serbian to be considered legally valid.
  • As of 2021, the GDP of Serbia was reported to be USD 7.5 billion.
Serbian labor laws cover employment contracts, minimum wage, working hours, and mandatory benefits such as paid leave and social security.
Serbia map

Table of Contents

  • Agreements
  • Onboarding Process
  • Visa
  • Minimum Wage
  • Payroll Cycle
  • Annual Bonus
  • Health Benefits
  • Working Hours and Overtime
  • Leaves
  • Social Security
  • Taxes for Employers
  • Taxes for Employees
  • Probation
  • Termination
  • Severance Pay
  • Employees or Contractors
  • Final Words


Serbia has signed several international agreements related to labor rights and regulations. Some of the notable agreements include:
  • International Labor Organization (ILO) conventions
  • United Nations (UN) conventions on human rights
  • European Social Charter
  • European Convention on Human Rights
  • Stabilization and Association Agreement with the European Union
The language of agreements is typically English, although some may be available in Serbian as well. Employers operating in Serbia are required to comply with the provisions of these agreements, which cover various aspects of labor and employment, including:
  • Equal opportunities and treatment in the workplace
  • Prohibition of child labor and forced labor
  • Protection of wages and working conditions
  • Health and safety at work
  • Social security and social protection
Onboarding Process

Onboarding Process

There are no specific laws governing the onboarding process. However, general best practices in Serbia include:
  • Providing a job offer letter and employment contract
  • Collecting and verifying necessary personal information and documentation, such as ID card, work permit, tax identification number, and bank account details
  • Orienting new employees to company policies and procedures, job duties, and performance expectations
  • Providing necessary training and resources to perform the job effectively.


Serbia offers several types of visas for foreign workers, including:
  • Short-term visa for stays up to 90 days
  • Long-term visa for stays longer than 90 days
  • Temporary residence permit for stays up to one year
  • Permanent residence permit for stays longer than one year

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Minimum Wage

Minimum Wage

As of January 2023, the minimum monthly wage in Serbia is RSD 49,399.
Payroll Cycle

Payroll Cycle

In Serbia, the most common payroll cycle is monthly, with salaries paid at the end of each month.
Annual Bonus

Annual Bonus

In Serbia, employers don't need to provide an annual bonus to employees. However, some companies may choose to offer bonuses as a form of incentive or reward for good performance.
Health Benefits

Health Benefits

In Serbia, employers are not required by law to provide health benefits to employees. However, many companies choose to offer health insurance and other benefits to attract and retain talent. Some common health benefits offered by employers in Serbia include:
  • Health insurance coverage for medical, dental, and vision care
  • Paid sick leave and paid time off for medical appointments
  • Disability insurance and workers' compensation
  • Access to mental health resources, such as counseling or therapy
Working Hours and Overtime

Working Hours and Overtime

  • Work hours: The standard work week is 40 hours, with a maximum of 8 hours per day.
  • Break: Employers are required by law to provide employees with a minimum 30-minute break for every 6 hours of work.
  • Overtime: All overtime hours over 40 hours a week are paid at an overtime compensation rate; this rate is typically 126.00% of the employee’s average salary rate.


Sick Leave

  • For the first 30 days of sick leave, employees are given 65% of their salary if the illness is not caused by the job.
  • If the illness is caused by the job, they may be entitled to full wages for the first month of illness.
  • The employers pay the sick leave for the first 30 days.
  • If an employee is ill for more than a month then pay benefits can be drawn from the social security fund.

Parental leaves

  • Mothers are entitled to up to 365 days of paid maternity leave with wages fully paid by the employer and social security for the first two births. the Maternity leave can be up to 2 years from 3rd birth onwards.
  • Fathers are entitled to up to 7 days of paid paternity leave.
  • Adoptive and foster parents get 8 months of leave. The leave period starts when the foster or adoption process is finalized. The leave period ends when the child turns 11 months old.

Annual leaves

  • Employees get at least 20 days of paid annual leave per year, with additional leave for certain categories of workers, such as those with hazardous or strenuous jobs.

Other leaves

  • Bereavement paid leave of 5 days is offered if a close member of the family passes away.

Public Holidays (for the Calendar year 2023)

  • New Year's Day (January 1-January 3)
  • Orthodox Christmas (January 7)
  • National day (February 15)
  • Orthodox Good Friday (April 14)
  • Orthodox Easter Monday (April 17)
  • May Day (May 1- May 2)
  • Armistice Day (November 11)

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Social Security

Social Security

In Serbia, social security contributions are mandatory for both employers and employees, covering areas such as healthcare, pensions, and disability insurance. The employer contribution is 17.4% and the employee contribution is 19.9%.
Taxes for Employers

Taxes for Employers

Employers are responsible for paying taxes and contributions on behalf of their employees in Serbia.
  • Social Security Contributions: Employers are required to contribute to various social security funds, including the Pension and Disability Insurance Fund, the Health Insurance Fund, and the Unemployment insurance.
    • Pension and disability contribution - 11.5%
    • Health insurance contribution - 5.15%contribution
    • Unemployment insurance - 0.75%
  • VAT( Value added tax) - a standard rate of 20%

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Taxes for Employees

Taxes for Employees

In Serbia, employees are subject to several taxes and contributions, which include:
  • Personal Income Tax: All employees are required to pay personal income tax on their earnings. The tax rate is progressive, ranging from 10% to 20%, depending on the employee's salary level.
    • income between 2,470,644.00 RSD and 4,941,288.00 RSD - 10%
    • income above 4,941,288.00 - 20%
  • Social Security Contributions: Employees are also required to contribute to various social security funds, including the Pension and Disability Insurance Fund, the Health Insurance Fund, and the National Employment Service.
    • Pension and disability contribution - 14%
    • Health insurance contribution - 5.15%contribution
    • Unemployment insurance - 0.75%


The probation period for an employee can last up to 3 months in Serbia.

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In Serbia, an employment contract can be terminated by the employer or the employee, with or without notice, under several conditions and scenarios.
  • Termination by mutual agreement
  • Due to the expiration of a fixed-term contract
  • Due to the employee's resignation
  • Due to the employee's misconduct or poor performance
  • Due to the employer's operational or business needs
  • Due to the employee's retirement or death
Severance Pay

Severance Pay

In Serbia, employees are entitled to receive severance pay in cases where their employment is terminated due to redundancy, bankruptcy, or other reasons beyond their control. The minimum amount of severance pay is one-third of the employee's average monthly salary for each year of service.
Employees or Contractors

Employees or Contractors

  • Employers who misclassify employees as contractors may be subject to fines, back payments of taxes and social security contributions, and legal action by workers seeking to be reclassified as employees.
  • Conversely, misclassifying contractors as employees can result in claims for benefits and protections to which they are not entitled, as well as the payment of additional taxes and contributions by the employer. Therefore, it is important for employers to properly classify their workers and ensure they are meeting all legal requirements for employment or contracting.
Final Words

Final Words

Overall, Serbia has a well-defined set of employment norms and regulations that provide a framework for employers and employees to work within. The country offers a range of benefits such as paid leave, sick leave, and social security contributions. Employers who comply with the country's employment laws can benefit from a skilled workforce and a competitive business environment.

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