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EACEA National Policies Platform


1. Youth Policy Governance

1.1 Target population of youth policy

Last update: 30 March 2024


Youth-related legislation 

Act on Public Interest in the Youth Sector (Zakon o javnem interesu v mladinskem sektorju; entered into force on 12 June 2010) defines young people as all young people and young adults of both genders aged between 15 and 29. This Act does not define any other target groups of young people in relation to specific policy measures.  

Provisions affecting young people in the criminal (penal), civil and labour legislation differ from the above definition of young people.


Penal Code (Kazenski zakonik; entered into force on 1 November 2008) defines three groups of young minors: younger minors (young people from 14 to 16 years old), who cannot be punished for the commited crimes, only educational and security measures can be imposed against them; older minors (young people who are already 16 but not yet 18 years old) can be exceptionally imposed a fine or juvenile detention; young adults (older than 18 years old but have not yet reached the age of 21 years) are criminally responsible, but they might receive educational or security measures only. Any person under the age of 14 years (a child), cannot be a perpetrator of a criminal offence (see Article 21).



Code of Obligations (Obligacijski zakonik; entered into force on 1 January 2002) and Family Code (Družinski zakonik; entered into force on 15 April 2019) stipulate that a natural persons acquire full legal capacity at the age of eighteen years. A natural person can acquire full legal capacity before this age if he/she marries or becomes a parent. This is decided by the court in extrajudicial proceedings. When a young person reaches 15 years, they get a limited legal capacity.

Employment Relations Act (Zakon o delovnih razmerjih; entered into force on 12 April 2013) stipulates that a young person who have reached the age of 15 years can sign an employment contract. The employment contract with a person who has not attained 15 years of age is null and void (see Article 21).

Young workers aged 15 to 18 enjoy special protection, such as special restrictions regarding hard work, night work, working time, annual leave.