What Are the Rights of Pregnant Women and Women in Labor in Serbia if the Company They Work For Goes Bankrupt During Pregnancy or Maternity Leave?

Maternity leave in Serbia is protected by law from dismissal during pregnancy and maternity leave. However, there is a situation when the company for which the pregnant woman worked went bankrupt during her maternity leave. The question here is what rights do pregnant women have against an employer who went bankrupt during pregnancy and maternity leave?

In that case, the Bankruptcy Law cancels all the provisions of the Labor Law and the same rules apply to expectant mothers as to all other employees of that company. To make the pain even worse, they will not be able to get a job for at least a year due to taking care of their child, and they will receive benefits from the bureau as unemployed only for the next six months. For example, if a woman is on maternity leave after the birth of her third child, she has the right to compensation in the amount of her salary for two years. If her company goes bankrupt, she will receive at least half as much from the bureau, and only for half a year.

If the employee’s employment has ended, regardless of her will or the employer’s will, in the event of the employer’s termination of employment (liquidation and bankruptcy), the labor inspector is not authorized to take measures, but in this situation, all employees, including pregnant women and mothers in labor, are instructed to exercise their rights through the National Employment Service, in accordance with the Law on Employment and Unemployment Insurance.

Bankruptcy “does not recognize” pregnant women and mothers, and they have absolutely no protection in the event that bankruptcy proceedings are initiated in their company during maternity leave.

The opening of bankruptcy proceedings is a reason for termination of employment, in which the woman in labor does not have the right to the payment of claims that belong to her under the Labor Law. This applies to all future claims, while everyone has rights to those realized before the opening of bankruptcy. The right to minimum wage can only be exercised in case of temporary disability.

With compliance with legal deadlines and procedures, the right to earnings could be realized in case of pregnancy sick leave, but not maternity leave. All employees of the company until the opening of the bankruptcy proceedings belong to the list of creditors and can have claims only until the date of publication of the bankruptcy proceedings.


If the employer stops working in accordance with the Law on Bankruptcy Procedures or in accordance with the Law on Business Companies, more precisely by liquidation, the pregnant woman will lose her job.
Nevertheless, the employer has certain obligations towards the pregnant woman, and they relate to issuing a decision on the termination of the employment relationship, then he is obliged to deregister the pregnant woman and pay all unpaid wages, if any. If such a situation occurs, pregnant women, as well as women in labor, can claim their rights through the National Employment Service.

Zoran Minic, Attorney at Law

Related Posts

Leave a Reply