How to obtain Residence and Business:Nikola B. Petrović, Serbian lawyer answers
The desire of entrepreneurs to establish commercial projects and investments outside their home country increases daily. Although the goal for investor is the sense that his investment project will achieve the desired success, but the basis on which his project will be built is legal advice that provides him with the answers to documents, contracts and laws on every piece of information he needs.
The importance of legal advice for business leaders appears as preparing the basis on which the project will rise, and that the use of an experienced and skilled lawyer is the first work that an entrepreneur must do, in order to prepare documents in a legal and sound manner and to obtain the required licenses and permits in accordance with the approved laws, locally and internationally. In order to avoid any violation or fine of the laws and regulations in force within the territory of the country in which his project resides.
In our next meeting with the lawyer Advokat Nikola Petrović, we will shed light on some issues and documents that the investor and businessman need to start his commercial and investment project in Serbia, and what the Serbian laws say in this regard, in addition knowing the documents required to obtain entry and residence visas and establish a company or branch thereof. A number of issues of interest to the visitor and investor in Serbia.
In this article we met the Serbian lawyer Nicola petovitc from Cambridge university -UK who is specialized in international investment and financial international law.
We will talk about legal issues and required documents for Residences visa and commercial business
– What are the conditions for residency, entry visas, taxes and fees?
Regarding the conditions for residency there are three grounds:
1. Marriage/family reunification;
3. Business/job – work, employment, conducting a business in Serbia, any other professional activity,
4. Additional – other justified reasons in accordance with legal system of the Republic of Serbia or international agreement between the Republic of Serbia and certain country
Residency permit by establishing a company – it allows a foreigner to form a company with himself as the only employee. Foreigner signs a working contract with his company which is technically considered as a proof of his source for living in Serbia.
The foreigner needs to spend at least 183 days per year (considered fiscal year) in order to obtain a permeant residence.
Permanent residency in Serbia is granted after 5 (five) years in Serbia.
– What are the legal documents required to establish investment companies in Serbia?
Legal documents required for a foreigner to establish an investment company in the Republic of Serbia are passport(s) and a good will.
Procedure for opening a company in Serbia lasts for up to 15 working days when it comes to the entities that do not require special permission or control by the Government (food, drinks, medicine, etc).
Investment companies can be formed as a central entity like a Chamber of Commerce or they can be in a form of classic LLC.
Full procedure for both can be explained during our meeting.
– What are the mechanisms for establishing branches of foreign companies in Serbia?
Serbian legislation does not recognize the branch as a legal entity. Branches are seen as vehicles for limited representation of the parent company. Even though a branch of foreign company is not considered a legal entity it can still perform legal transaction and activities in the name of the parent company on the Serbian territory.
Regarding the mechanism and legal documents required by the Serbian Business Registry for opening a foreign company branch in Serbia are following:
• decision of opening a branch in Serbia issued by the parent company;
• proof that the foreign company is registered in the country of origin;
• certificate of registration and the constitutive documents of the parent company;
• company’s articles of association with complete info about the owners;
• list of the company’s management board members (and other boards if there are any);
• name of the branch;
• reason why branch is being opened;
• name of the legal representative of the company.
All the above mentioned documents have to be notarized and translated into Serbian.
– What are the licenses required to represent foreign companies in Serbia?
Licenses required to represent foreign company in Serbia is an authority made by the CEO and a decision either given by the shareholders of the foreign company.
Authority or decision has to be hotarized as well.
– What are the licenses required to establish tourism companies?
Generally, the procedure is the same as for any other LLC, with a few specific steps.
– How to make contracts and agreements between Serbian and foreign companies?
Contract law is very broad, but there is no obstacle for Serbian companies to make contracts with foreign companies. There are various benefits for FDI (foreign direct investments) made to foreign companies who wish to invest in Serbia.
For any agreements betweet foreign and Serbian companies the applicable law can be stipulated by the Contract parties. The Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties (VCLT) is also applicable.
There are numerous BITs (Bilateral investment treaties) which govern the rule of conduct between Serbian state and foreign companies wishing to invest in Serbia.
– What is the mechanism for opening a bank account in Serbia?
To set up an Bank account for your legal entity, you will need:
• Bank Application for establishing of business operation/ account opening residence (legal entities, entrepreneurs, branches of foreign legal entities)
• Specimens signatures
• Contact for the opening and maintaining of the dinar/foreign currency account
• Excerpt from the companies Register not older than 6 weeks from the day of issue or decision of incorporation from competent authority
• Excerpt from official beneficial owners Registry
• Signatures of legal representatives – OP form
• ID card of the authorised representative, attorney or procreated
• ID card of the person authorised for the disposal of the company assets
• Statement of the client for establishing the status of the official
• Statement of the Deposit Insurance
– *The list is not comprehensive
– **Original or certified copy of documents must to be presented
Nikola B. Petrović, LL.m.
attorney-at-law, with Cambridge specialization in International Investment & Financial Law
Francuska 5, Belgrade, SRB