Archival Material and Archiving Activities – What You Need to Know
The Law on Archival Material and Archiving Activities started to apply as of 2nd February 2021 (hereinafter: Law).
The subject of the Law is regulation of the system for protection of archival material and documentary material, as well as conditions and manner of the use of archival material, organization, competence, and activities of archives in the Republic of Serbia.
Accompanying by-laws for implementation of the Law, which would complete new legal framework in this area, have not been adopted yet.
Purpose of the Law
The Law defines the archival material as the cultural good of public interest for the Republic of Serbia and that the protection of archival material is of public interest for the Republic of Serbia, thus indicating the importance of proper regulation of all the aforementioned matters.
Application of the Law to Business Entities
The Law applies to legal entities and natural persons, and therefore is applicable to business entities, which may be qualified as creators and/or holders of archival material and documentary material.
Namely, business entities create archival material and documentary material while performing their business activities, or they act as holders of archival material and documentary material, or just have the possession over them, notwithstanding the legal basis, which brings obligations as they are prescribed by the Law, that these subjects are obliged to fulfill.
The Law prescribes obligations for creators and holders of archival material and documentary material and regulates organization of archival activities, with the aim that all the subjects to which the Law applies organize and comply their activities with the Law.
Creators and holders of archival material and documentary material, are among other duties, obliged to:
- Adopt General Act on the manner of recording, classification, archiving and storage of archival material and documentary material;
- Adopt List of categories of archival material and documentary material, with storage deadlines;
- Adopt General Act on the method of recording, protection and use of electronic documents;
- Appoint responsible expert for the protection and handling of archival material and documentary material;
- Keep an archive book in the prescribed form (which will be prescribed by the competent Ministry);
- Submit to the competent archive a transcript of the archive book, no later than 30th April of the current year, for the documentary material created in the previous year;
- Obtain the opinion of the competent archive, before taking any measures regarding archival material and documentary material, such as status changes, relocation, adaptation of space, initiation of bankruptcy procedure, liquidation procedure ecc.
Additionally, creators and holders of the archival material and documentary material, are obliged to inform the competent archive about its incorporation, as well as about all changes of their status and organization, i.e. change of status/name, organization, address, cessation of activities, no later than 30 days as of the day of such occurrence.
Fines for Non-Compliance
Envisaged fines for failure to comply with obligations prescribed by the Law amount from RSD 50,000.00 to RSD 2,000,000.00 for legal entities, and from RSD 5,000.00 to RSD 150,000.00 for responsible person in a legal entity.
This article is for informational purposes only and should not be considered legal advice. Should you require any additional information, feel free to contact us.