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Paying taxes as a freelancer in Serbia

Local Representative
Boris H Local Representative Member Since: Aug 7, 2015

Hi everyone,


More detailed explanation on this issue can be found here:

and here:


Author of these posts is a lawyer and I think these informations are relevant.


Frequent Visitor
Milena G Member Since: Sep 23, 2015

Hey all,

What about Macedonia? 

Do you have relevant information over tax payment solutions? 

What is the best thing to do?

Has anyone from Macedonia payed tax? If so please advise on how you did it.


Frequent Visitor
Jonas K Member Since: Jul 28, 2017

Hi all, I registered on Upwork some days ago and I'm planning to start working as a freelancer here in Serbia, but I have the same problem as many others - I just don't know where to start? How to do it legally? I won't work consantly, so I won't have a constant income, I'll just work when I have time and mood. 


So, where should I start? What to do with taxes, how to pay them? What other things will I need?


Thank you in advance for everyone and have a nice day!


Vladimir G Moderator Member Since: Oct 31, 2014

Hi Jonas,


Please check the information shared in these two threads (here and here) and follow the links in order to find more details about working and receiving payments as a freelancer in Serbia.


Please also upload your photo to your profile in order to bring it in line with Upwork ToS and profile guidelines.

Ace Contributor
Marko D Member Since: Jun 2, 2017

Hi guys,


I've search far and wide for the same solution with some collegues. We are running a marketing agency (on Upwork and as a regular brick and mortar agency) and the problem with taxes are easily solved when you are working as a freelancer. 

To keep everything transparent, most of my earnings come from old clients abroad which I had before Upwork, and a smaller amount coming from Upwork since I'm working less than 10/hrs a week here, and in both cases I use Payoneer as a payment method since it really is the easiest way to run things.

Since my earnings are not small I usually end up depleating Telenor ATMs twice a month and that gets noticed both by the bank and the tax office so I sat down with a lawyer and my book keeper to solve the problem, pay the taxes and not give 60% of my neto earnings to the governmant. Now with Payoneer (based in the USA), they don't have an insight into your bank account, nor they could get it in any legal way possible. You withdrawing money with a Payoneer card is the same as when a random tourist does it. For all they care, your card is foreign and that means that they can't get access to it. That gives you a "safe space" to operate. 


Here's the deal, and this is only if you're earning over 2k$/month (less than that they won't even notice and you won't have any problems) - but if it's higher than that you need to keep everything legit and the best way to do it is to be "Pausalac" because you're the one registering your own earnings, and you pay way less to the tax office (10% from your neto earnings), and with the insurance and healthcare as well as pension, it's your choice will you set up a fund with the government ministries or go to a private insurance group so it's not mandatory.

Payoneer card will keep you "safe" for smaller amounts since they have bigger fish to fry, but for higher earnings you have to go legit, or they will find a way to charge you everything that you've earned for the last 5 years. 

As for the agency, since it's brick and mortar we have to keep everything legit, as for the Upwork agency, it's the same thing as with a regular freelancer. The client pays the agency, the agency pays you and you withdraw the cash as a freelancer (pausalac)

So if you earn over 2k$/month go ahead and become "Pausalac", if not, you have nothing to worry about

Vladimir G Moderator Member Since: Oct 31, 2014

Hi Marko,


I'd strongly advise freelancers to consult a tax advisor, accountant with experience in online business or tax lawyer regarding the tax charges due on their earnings and about the financial processes you mentioned. Check the information Milan shared by following the details posted earlier in this thread for further insight, especially regarding the difference between using a Payoneer account and card, and their legal ramification.

Ace Contributor
Marko D Member Since: Jun 2, 2017

Hi Vladimir,

I compleatly agree. I did just that and I'm just passing the information along, but I agree, for any type of business, be it a brick and mortar one or an online one, you need to consult with your book keepers and advisors on what's best for you.

As for the Payoneer account vs. the Payoneer card, I'm aware of different policies across different countries, and based on what my accountant said - I'm fairly certain that Payoneer card in Serbia, owned by a Serbian resident is not tied to Serbia in any other legal way since the bank account itself is located in the USA, and that means that they do not fall under jurisdiction of the Serbian tax office.

As for paying taxes, I advise all of my colleagues to do so, after all, we wouldn't have that beautiful singing fountain on Slavia square if we didn't pay them. Smiley Tongue

Community Guru
Miroslav M Member Since: Jan 21, 2016

I hope that initiative for waiving all taxes to the beginners in business for the first year will be recognized by the government. It is a real need as the current solutions for doing business legal are rather horrible.

Active Member
Ivan K Member Since: Jul 2, 2017

Hi All,


Well, I've read all your posts and I still have one question not seen here.


What if...I have regular full-time job here in Serbia where all my taxes are paid (pension and healthcare) and here on Upwork I have side job as freelancer with earnings less than 1000$/month?


Why would I need to pay pension and healthcare again when it is already paid? (discussion why the heck even we pay this in Serbia since I still need to go to private doctore or I would die waiting, or that I will die before I get my pension we will leave for another forum)


What sort of taxes I should pay in this case?