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Employee card - information for employers

When does a foreigner need a permit?

If you want to employ a foreigner who does not have free access to the labour market, it is only possible if:

  • The foreigner is an employee card or a blue card holder, or has a certificate confirming that he has satisfied the conditions for issuing this card. Employee cards and blue cards are both a residence permit and a work permit.
  • or he has a valid work permit (if required under the Labour Code) and a valid employee card (in the non-dual document mode).

The following persons may be employed without an employee card or blue card:

  1. citizens of EU member states and citizens of Norway, Iceland, Lichtenstein and Switzerland
  2. family members of citizens of the CR or of citizens stated in point 1
  3. foreigners for whom the exceptions states in Section 98 of Act No. 435/2004 Coll., on employment, apply

Employee card, blue card or work permit?

An employee card, blue card and work permit are issued for a specific job with a specific employer. In terms of employment arrangements, they are equivalent to each other. Each of these permits may be granted under specific circumstances. For example, for blue cards, the law stipulates the conditions pertaining to the job for which the blue card is intended.

The main differences between an employee card, blue card and work permit from the employer's perspective are as follows:

Employee card Blue card Work permit
Differences in qualification There are no restrictions on the qualification required for job vacancies. A foreigner's monthly wage, salary or remuneration must not be lower than the basic rate of the monthly minimum wage regardless of the extent of work. The weekly working hours must be at least 15 hours. At least completed tertiary education or higher secondary education with the minimum duration of studies of 3 years is required. The relevant employment contract must be concluded for one year for the weekly working hours specified by the law and the agreed gross monthly or annual wages must be at least 1.5 times higher than the average gross annual wage in the Czech Republic published in a notice of the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs. There are no restrictions on the qualification required for job vacancies.
Processing times The employee card is a work permit and a residence permit in one document. If all prerequisites are met, the employee card should be issued in a shorter time than a work permit. The blue card is a work permit and a residence permit in one document. If all prerequisites are met, the blue card should be issued in a shorter time than a work permit. The work permit alone does not entitle a foreigner to work – a residence permit for the purpose of employment (an employee card in a non-dual document mode) must be obtained first.
Reporting job vacancies

Reporting the job vacancy to the relevant regional branch of the Labour Office is a general obligation under Section 86 of Act No. 435/2004 Coll., on employment.

The employer must grant consent with publishing the vacancy in the central records of job vacancies available to employee card holders (hereinafter referred to as the central records of vacancies available for employee cards). This consent may be granted when reporting a job vacancy or later.

Reporting the job vacancy to the relevant regional branch of the Labour Office is a general obligation under Section 86 of Act No. 435/2004 Coll., on employment.

The employer must grant consent with publishing the vacancy in the central records of job vacancies available to blue card holders (hereinafter referred to as the central records of vacancies available for blue cards). This consent may be granted when reporting a job vacancy or later.

Reporting the job vacancy to the relevant regional branch of the Labour Office is a general obligation under Section 86 of Act No. 435/2004 Coll., on employment.

The employer must declare interest in employing foreigners - work permit holders.

Selection of employee An employment contract, contract for work or a letter of intent stipulating the parties' commitment to conclude an employment contract or a contract for work within the specified date must be concluded before filing an employee card application. The contract or agreement is one of the attachments to an employee card application.
See What happens after a job vacancy has been included in the central records of vacancies available for employee cards?
An employment contract must be concluded before filing a blue card application. The concluded employment contract is one of the attachments to a blue card application.
See What happens after a job vacancy has been included in the register of vacancies available for blue cards?
The employer's declaration of intention to employ the foreigner is required before the permit is granted. The employer always knows in advance for whom the permit is issued.
Duration of permit

Depending on the concluded employment contract, but no more than 2 years.

The permit may be repeatedly extended by no more than 2 years.

Depending on the concluded employment contract plus 3 months, but no more than 2 years.

The permit may be repeatedly extended by no more than 2 years.

No more than 2 years.

The permit may be repeatedly extended by no more than 2 years.

How to offer a job vacancy for an employee card

How to include a job vacancy in the central records of vacancies available for employee cards?

In order for a foreigner to submit an application for an employee card for a specific job vacancy, this vacancy must be included in the central records of vacancies available for employee cards. The job vacancy can be listed in this central records if all of the following conditions are met:

  1. The employer reports the job vacancy to the relevant regional branch of the Labour Office. The employer may also report the job vacancy via the Internet, if permitted to do so by the relevant regional branch of the Labour Office.
  2. The weekly working hours must be at least 15 hours.
  3. The offered foreigner's monthly wage, salary or remuneration must not be lower than the basic rate of the monthly minimum wage regardless of the extent of work.
  4. The employer grants consent to publish the vacancy in the central records of vacancies available for employee cards when reporting the vacancy or subsequently.
  5. The job vacancy has not been filled within 30 days of having been reported.

The vacancy is then automatically included in the central records of vacancies available for employee cards. If the employer has granted consent to publication, the vacancy is also published in the central records of vacancies available for employee cards.

A vacancy will not be included in the central records of vacancies available for employee cards if:

  • filling the vacancy were to threaten the situation on the job market; this is decided by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs.
  • the conditions given in Section 38 of Act No. 435/2004 Coll., on employment, are fulfilled.

What happens after a job vacancy has been included in the central records of vacancies available for employee cards?

What is the next stage after the publication of a job vacancy in the central records of vacancies available for employee cards?

Foreigners may submit their applications for a job vacancy as soon as the relevant vacancy is published in the central records of vacancies available for employee cards.

A foreigner may only submit an application for an employee card on the basis of contact with the employer and having concluded an employment contract, contract for work or a letter of intent stipulating the parties' commitment to conclude an employment contract or a contract for work within the specified date. An employment contract or contract for work must be attached to each employee card application.

Obligations of the employer

  • Once a foreigner commences his employment, the employer will inform the relevant regional branch of the Labour Office of the vacancy having been filled, stating the employee card reference number.
  • The employer will inform the relevant regional branch of the Labour Office in writing if a foreigner who has been granted an employee card:
    1. has not commenced employment (within 45 calendar days of the day on which the conditions for issuing an employee card were fulfilled), or
    2. terminated his employment prior to the expiration of the period for which the permit was issued, and, if the employment was terminated for any of the reasons stipulated in Section 52 a) to e) of the Labour Code or by agreement for the same reasons, or by an immediate termination pursuant to Section 56 of the Labour Code, also of the reason for the employment termination (within 10 calendar days of termination of the foreigner's employment).
  • If the employment was terminated for any of the reasons stipulated in Section 52 a) to e) of the Labour Code, or by agreement for the same reasons, or by an immediate termination pursuant to Section 56 of the Labour Code prior to the expiration of the period for which an employee card was issued for the foreigner, and, for that reason, his/her residence permit issued for employment purposes has been or is to be cancelled, the employer will pay the cost of any healthcare provided to the foreigner in the period between employment termination and the foreigner's travel out of the country, but for a maximum of the period for which the work permit was issued; this will not apply of thee costs are covered by other means.
  • The employer will inform the Ministry of the Interior in writing and without delay of any expected change in the job position of an employee card holder.
Last updated: 4. 5. 2015
The person responsible for complete information: sekce 4, oddělení 401. Dotazy vyřizuje: tel. 844 844 803, kontaktni.centrum(a)mpsv.cz
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