LEGAL PROFESSION ACT - SERBIA
What is the Legal profeession act of Republic of Serbia?
Legal profeession act of Serbia is a basic law that regulates the field of advocacy in Serbia.
This law regulates the powers of bar associations to issue other regulations important for the legal profession, such as – the Code of Ethics for Lawyers; – Attorney’s fee; Statute of Bar Associations.
The current Legal profeession act entered into force in 2011, and was passed by the National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia. The law was then amended by a 2012 Constitutional Court ruling.
Thematically, the Legal profeession act primarily regulates the ways of organizing lawyers in bar associations, the ways of admission to the legal profession, legal status of lawyers – their rights and obligations.
The provision of legal services is exclusively entrusted to lawyers. The law prohibits practicing law for non-lawyers. Failure to comply with this provision is a criminal offense.
It is regulated that legal aid provided by lawyers includes: writing submissions and documents – lawsuits, appeals, contracts, wills, various other submissions; representation of domestic and foreign persons, their defense, mediation in resolving disputes, legal advice.
In relation to the previous laws in Serbia that regulated the legal profession, the currently valid law – introduced the obligation to take the bar exam; mandatory professional liability insurance, and the same act regulated issues of the jurisdiction of bar associations. The Serbian Bar Association is the main chamber for the entire territory of Serbia, and there are also local chambers.
The Legal profeession act regulates the following issues in more detail:
- Conditions for acquiring the right to practice law and entry in the directory of lawyers
- Conditions for entry in the directory of lawyers of foreign nationals
- Obligation to take the Bar Exam
- Taking a lawyer’s oath
- Making a decision on registration in the directory and issuing an ID card
- Basic duties and rights of a lawyer and disciplinary responsibility
- Obligation of professional training of lawyers
- Prohibition of lawyer advertising
- Confidentiality – The duty to maintain legal secrecy
- Obligation to provide legal assistance in individual cases
- Freedom to provide legal aid
- Determining jobs that are incompatible with the reputation and independence of the legal profession
- Inviolability of the law office
- Features of joint work of lawyers – joint law office and law partnership
- Provisions on Law Trainee
- Public powers of bar associations and its bodies
- Cessation of the profession
The Legal profeession act of Serbia is conceived on the model of the highest European standards for legal profession. In addition to the issues listed above, this law regulates a number of other issues.
The main issue addressed by the law is the position of the legal profession in the Republic of Serbia – ensuring that the legal profession is an independent and autonomous profession that provides legal assistance to domestic and foreign persons.
The independence of the legal profession is achieved especially through:
– autonomy and independence of the lawyer
– by organizing lawyers in bar associations
– the possibility for the party to choose a lawyer
– deciding on admission to the legal profession
– by enacting regulations by the Bar Association concerning the legal profession
You can download the complete text of the law translated into English here – The Legal profession act Serbia.pdf
To better understand the importance of the Legal profession act and its differentiation, you can read more about the Legal profession acts in neighboring countries of Serbia:
To better understand the importance of the Legal profession law and its differentiation in the surrounding countries of Serbia, you can read more about the Legal profession act in the South East Europe region countries: