PRAVNI ZAPISI • Year II • No. 2 • pp. 568-587
REVIEW OF THE LAW ON PROPERTY RESTITUTION AND COMPENSATION
Prof. dr Stefanović Zlatko
Redovni profesor, Pravni fakultet Univerziteta Union u Beogradu
Pravni zapisi, No. 2/2011, pp. 568-587
nationalization; denationalization; restitution of property; compensation
The Republic of Serbia is among the last of the former socialist countries to enact the Law on Property Restitution and Compensation. One of the most important aspects of this Law is admitting the mistake made, as well as admitting that the state has obligation to avert the consequences of imposing those laws many years ago. In relation to the effect to be achieved by this new Law, anticipations are modest, more symbolic, since, in most of these cases, instead of the natural restitution, monetary compensation will be applied. The amount of compensation will be symbolic in comparison to the value of the nationalized property. It might even happen that the state will not be able to pay the anticipated 10% advance of the value of the nationalized property, since that amount might exceed the two million Euros earmarked for the compensation of the nationalized property. This Law does not interfere with the rights of the present owners and limits the natural restitution to the property owned by the Republic of Serbia, Autonomous Provinces or local governments. The same also applies to the property in possession of other entities that is state or sociallyowned. Private property is excluded from the natural restitution. Physical persons have the right to denationalization, while legal persons have the right only if they are registered endowments. The right to denationalization is inheritable. With respect to the legal successors, the Law provides a solution that expresses the essence of denationalization. Namely, based on such solution, the right to request denationalization is inheritable, which right will be treated as the right to the property that has been lost and subsequently found. This solution implies the right to quiet enjoyment of the property, as a natural right of property owners, regardless of the positive law. Thus, even if it was deemed not to exist before (before the enactment of Law on Property Restitution and Compensation) it is now expressly provided under the Law that this right has always existed.