Remedies and enforcement

AuthorBiljana Kotevska
6.1 Judicial and/or administrative procedures (Article 7 Directive 2000/43,
Article 9 Directive 2000/78)
a) Available procedures for enforcing the principle of equal treatment
In North Macedonia, the following procedures exist for enforcing the principle of equal
treatment: judicial, administrative and alternative dispute resolution such as m ediation.
The Anti-Discrimination Law provides several options for procedural protection. These are:
administrative, litigation and misdemeanour procedures.
Administrative procedures can be initiated before the Commission for Prevention and
Protection against Discrimination (Chapter IV, Anti-Discrimination Law), and the Lab our
and Education inspectorates. The procedure before the CP PD is free of charge. The entire
duration of the procedure is set to last no more than 60 days (including five days for t he
CPPD to forward the complaint to the respondent and 15 days for the respondent to reply).
This may result in the CPPD giving an opinion and recommendation. If the recommendation
is not acted upon, the CPPD must initiate a court misdemeanour procedure (Article 27(4)).
Litigation proceedings can be initiated before ordinary courts, based on the provisions of
the Anti-Discrimination Law (Chapter V, Articles 32-40). The court proceedings have
priority in the event of simultaneous procedures (Article 27(5)).
Under the Anti-Discrimination Law, the outcome of a claim depends on the procedure one
chooses to pursue. The administrative procedure envisages a recommendation to rectify
the violation (i.e. the discrimination) within 30 days; litigation could lead to an award of
regular compensation; while the misdemeanour pr ocedure envisages fines in the range of
EUR 400 to EUR 5 000.
Financial sanctions and other sanctions for discri mination are provided under the Criminal
Code. These provisions have not been applied thus far.
The procedures for employment in the private and public sectors are different. In the public
sector, the Law on State Administration sets out a detailed procedure, which must be
conducted in accordance with the law and with very strict criteria, while in the private
sector, according to the La w on Labour Relations, employers ar e free to choose their own
methods to find adequate candidates for employment. A worker who believes that th ey
have been discriminated against can inform the employer within eight days, giving the
employer a chance to r esolve the issue (Article 181). If this is not done within th e next
eight days, the worker can lodge a lawsuit against the employer (within the next 15 days).
This last deadline is directly applicable in cases of dismissal and rejection in the recruitment
process due to discrimination. This is a rather costly procedure, a s hiring a lawyer is an
obligation and the claimant must pay the cou rt costs in advance. Moreover, if a claimant
loses a lawsuit against a state employer, he or she has to pay the costs of the State
Defender.226 As it is a judicial litigation, there are strict time limits for all procedural actions.
Mediation is an opt ional instrument at the disposal of th e judge in any litigation. There is
no record that it has been used in a discrimination case.
Although non-binding, if the CPPD finds discrimination, it issues an opinion accompanied
by recommendations. The person to whom the recomm endation is directed must act on it
and notify the CPPD within a deadline of 30 days (Article 27(3)). If the person does not act
226 The State Defender is an institution financed by the state budget. However, its practice is to request
litigation costs like a private solicitor. When combined with court costs, this is a serious burden on the

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