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Yugoslavia: Residency registration, including where registration is carried out, whether there is a deadline for registering, and the information that must be provided by a resident who registers

Publisher Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada
Author Research Directorate, Immigration and Refugee Board, Canada
Publication Date 1 August 1998
Citation / Document Symbol YUG29977.E
Cite as Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, Yugoslavia: Residency registration, including where registration is carried out, whether there is a deadline for registering, and the information that must be provided by a resident who registers, 1 August 1998, YUG29977.E, available at: [accessed 31 May 2016]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.


The information that follows was provided by an official at the Embassy of Yugoslavia in Ottawa during a 21 August 1998 telephone interview.

Residents of Yugoslavia must register their place of residence at local municipal offices. When they move to a new address, it must be registered at the new location's municipal offices. There are specific municipal offices for address registration within the municipal government buildings, which usually house a variety of offices, including a police office. The police are not, however, involved in residency registration. Registration is usually carried out within 30 days of moving to a locality, but this deadline is not strict; many people do not register within the first month of moving, and register later with no consequence.

When registering the address of residence, a resident must state or show his or her previous address, and give their full name. Every person residing in a household must be registered, although it is usually a head of the family who registers other members of the household, such as children. The gender and date of birth of all members of the household is probably noted in the registry. The nationality or ethnicity or religion of the resident is not registered. However, foreigners who stay in Yugoslavia intent on residing for a few months or indefinitely must register, and at registration they will probably have to present a passport or other document showing their citizenship.

The following information was provided by the Data and Request Unit of the Repatriation Information Centre in Sarajevo (23 Aug. 1998).

The residency registration process in the Republika Srpska was inherited from the former Yugoslav regime and kept on in national legislation.

The information that follows was provided by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees office in Belgrade (25 Aug. 1998):

Citizens and residents of FRY/Serbia must register their address with the municipal police office. Before registering on a new address, one must de-register previous address with the local police office. This de-registration date is noted in one's ID card. The only exception applies to Belgrade, where de-registration is not required when changing municipal address (Belgrade has 15 municipalities).

Registration must take place within the period of seven  (7) days. For not compliance with this regulation, a small fine is prescribed.

Data that must be provided is as follows: full name, date and place of birth, occupation and address of the employer where applicable. Also, one must present contract of rent/sale of the apartment or approach the local police together with the owner of the apartment on the new address. The owner  has to sign a statement of accepting the new tenants on his/her free will. All persons from the household have to register in person except the underage children. The new address will be written in their ID cards.

It should be noted that the new FRY/Serbian Law on ID cards is expected to be introduced before the parliament soon. As the Law will contain provisions regarding the registration, the above brief should be understood with these limitations.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum.


Embassy of Yugoslavia, Ottawa. 21 August 1998. Telephone interview with official.

Repatriation Information Centre, Sarajevo. 23 August 1998. Electronic communication with Data and Request Unit.

United Nations High Commission for Refugees, Belgrade. 25 August 1998. Electronic communication with officer.

Copyright notice: This document is published with the permission of the copyright holder and producer Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB). The original version of this document may be found on the offical website of the IRB at Documents earlier than 2003 may be found only on Refworld.

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