In a major initiative aimed at aiding the Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs), the MDTF-JSS in partnership with YUCOM, has developed a comprehensive self-representation guide to Economic Penal Proceedings. This activity underscores the World Bank commitment to bolstering MSMEs, a significant component of Serbia's economic landscape.
The process of developing this comprehensive guide involved extensive preliminary groundwork, including meetings with relevant institutions such as the
Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia, Courts, Bar Chambers, Serbian Association of Employers, and others. The purpose was to gather vital information about the issues and challenges MSMEs encounter, forming the basis of the guide's content.
To gain deeper insights into the prevailing issues faced by MSMEs, the preparatory focus group discussions were organized to pinpoint common problems MSMEs face and key issues the Guide should cover, allowing MSMEs to better represent their interests in court proceedings. Participants included a diverse array of stakeholders, thus ensuring a wide spectrum of perspectives.
Following the drafting of the guide, a validation focus group discussion was organized to ascertain the content's validity, the appropriateness of the language for legal laypersons, and the usefulness of the topics covered for MSMEs. This careful vetting process ensured that the guide is both accessible and practical for its intended audience.
The aim of the Guide is to micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises become familiar with legal proceedings and provide answers to the questions they may have before addressing the court regarding misdemeanors and economic offenses. It enables them to have a more realistic and comprehensive understanding of the judicial processes before entering the proceedings. The Guide contains basic information about proceedings before the misdemeanor and commercial courts in Serbia; details about the costs of legal proceedings; key information and guidelines, as well as relevant templates. The Guide does not cover all topics that may be of interest to some micro, small, and medium enterprises. Additional topics may be included in the future, considering the needs of the target audience.
Guide to Economic Criminal Proceedings: Misdemeanors and Economic Offenses, was widely distributed to all relevant parties. The Guide is available in English and Serbian.