Photo: Milovan Milenković
If you’re coming to Belgrade for work, you will need a temporary or permanent stay permit and working permit, unless you have a legislative exception such as work in diplomacy, international organizations or you volunteer on certain international projects or you are a citizen of an EU member state.
If you are the owner, founder, representative or a member of the executive body of a legal entity registered in Serbia, with which you don’t have an employment contract or if you reside in Serbia for the purpose of establishing business contacts or attending business meetings, without generating any income or you perform other business activities related to the preparation of prospective employment in Serbia, you don’t need a work permit, under the general condition that your stay in Serbia does not exceed 90 days within six months.
In general, there are six types of work permits in Serbia:
- personal work permit – can be provided for a person who has a permanent residence permit, refugee status or belongs to a special category of foreigners;
- employment permit – this type of work permit is obtained by your Serbian employer and it should meet certain requirements (if your employer could not find Serbian nationals with the same qualifications).
- work permit for appointed person – a work permit for persons employed by a foreign employer for the purpose of performing activities in Serbia, according to the business and technical cooperation agreement entered into and between Serbian and foreign employer;
- work permit for movement within the company – work permit reserved for key personnel from a foreign company appointed to a branch or subsidiary company in Serbia;
- work permit for an independent professional – this is a one-off permit, issued upon a request of the end user of services from Serbia, with which the independent professional has a contract which must contain a deadline for his work performance;
- work permits for training – for the purpose of training, apprenticeship, professional practice, vocational training, i.e. training
- self-employment work permits – a permit issued at the request of a foreigner with a long-term VISA “D” on the basis of employment or/and a temporary residence permit in Serbia.
If work engagement in Serbia of a foreigner with a long-term VISA “D” for the purpose of employment does not last longer than his VISA, he does not need to have a temporary residence permit. Otherwise, if his business engagement in Serbia lasts longer than the validity of the long-term VISA “D”, or if he did not need a VISA to enter Serbia, application for a temporary residence is mandatory.
SELF EMPLOYMENT WORKING PERMITS
All work permits are granted by the Serbian National Employment Service and filing of an application is obligation of your employer in Serbia, except in the case of self-employment work permit – when you are your own employer and your own employee.
If you are a freelancer, you would definitely fall under this type of work permit.
This work permit is issued to foreigners who want to conduct their business activities in Serbia after registration of a company at the Serbian Business Register Agency.
Self-employment work permit has the same term as the long-term VISA “D” (if you don’t have a temporary residence) or a temporary residence permit – maximum of one year with the possibility of prolongation.
If you are filing for a self-employment permit, the procedure is simple – submit the required documentation and answer a few additional questions, if any. The application for a permit or extension of a work permit can be submitted:
- via e-mail, under the condition that you have an electronic signature or if you issue a power of attorney to the attorney with the electronic signature – for Belgrade, the address is pisarnica.Beograd@nsz.gov.rs
- personally, at the counter of a competent branch offices of Serbian National Employment Service – for Belgrade, it is in the headquarters in Gundulićev Venac 23-25
- Application form
- Copy of a valid passport
- Temporary residence permit (if required)
- Statement on type, duration and volume of the activities to be conducted in Serbia
- Proof of appropriate qualifications for conducting the activities in question
- Proof of the right to use business premises in Serbia for conducting the activities in question – lease agreement or proof of ownership
- Proof of fee payment in the amount of 13.880,00 dinars (approximately 110 €)
You can carry out only the activities for which the working permit is granted.
If you have a self-employment work permit, you are obliged to start performing the activities for which a work permit has been granted within 90 days from the date of obtaining that permit, whilst for other types of work permits this deadline is even shorter – only 15 days.