Export and Import of Non-Commercial Goods to and from the Czech Republic
Czech and foreign nationals (natural persons) do not require any permission to export from the Czech Republic articles of non-commercial nature, i.e. articles that are, as to their kind and quantity, imported exclusively to meet the personal needs of these persons and members of their families, or which are to be given as presents. The value of the exported articles is not limited.
If the exported articles are subject to legal regulations, such as veterinary regulations, regulations concerning protection of cultural values, museum and gallery pieces, health and environmental protection, security, etc., the Customs Officers will require export permission pursuant to these regulations.
Czech and foreign nationals are exempt from paying Custom Duty (may import duty free) when importing articles of non-commercial nature, for which the total customs value does not exceed 6000 Czech Korunas/CZK (approximately USD 180.00). If imported as shipments, these articles are not subject to taxation and/or duty, provided their total customs does not exceed the same value.
When importing tobacco products and alcoholic beverages, duty free import is limited:
200 cigarettes or 100 cigarillos or 50 cigars or 250 grams of tobacco or reasonable combination of the above
- alcoholic beverages
1 litre of liquor or 2 litres of wine
- 50 grams of perfume or 0.25 litres of eau de toilette
- medications and prescription drugs in quantity corresponding to the personal needs of the individual using them.
Tobacco and alcoholic beverages can be imported only by persons older than 16 (tobacco) and 18 (alcoholic beverages) years.
Persons permanently residing outside the Czech Republic are also allowed to import duty free one thousand hunting shot cartridges and fifty bullets; imported cartridges will be let in only upon presentation of a permit issued by the Czech Embassy or Consulate.
Other imported articles are subject to Customs Duties fixed according to the rates of the customs tariff, VAT, excise duties and other possible taxes.
VAT is usually fixed at 22.00 % of the customs value. Certain selected articles are subject to a 5.00% VAT. Other taxes are paid on imported hydrocarbon fuels and lubricants, alcohol and spirits, beer, wine and tobacco products, with a different rate for each of the mentioned articles.
Personal effects of foreign natural persons arriving in the Czech Republic and their motor vehicles will be cleared by Customs for temporary import duty-free if the personal effects and the motor vehicle(s) serve to meet personal needs of these persons during their stay in the country, and will be exported from the country upon their departure. Motor vehicles and personal effects imported under these circumstances must leave the country within six months.
Persons returning from a temporary or permanent stay outside the Czech Republic may import their personal effects and/or non-commercial motor vehicle duty free if they fulfil the following conditions. The person lived abroad consecutively for more than 12 months and the personal effects were in use by the person at least six months before the departure from the country of his/her stay.
General Information on the Procedure of Employing Foreigners
The conditions for employing foreigners in the Czech Republic are laid down in the Law on employment according to which foreigners or persons without citizenship may be employed in the territory of the Czech Republic provided that they were granted an employment permit and residence permit.
Similarly as for employment, an employment permit is also required for a foreigner or a person without citizenship who intends to work in the territory of the Czech Republic within a labour relationship with a foreign employer who is sending him (her) to perform such work on the basis of a commercial or other agreement concluded with a Czech legal or natural person.
The Labour Authority in the territory of which the employment is to be performed makes the decisions on issuing a permit to acquire an employee from abroad and on an employment permit for such employee.
Issue of a permit for an employer to acquire employees from abroad, as well as issue of an employment permit for a foreigner is subject to payment of an administrative fee. An exception from the above provisions is granted for the citizens of the Slovak Republic who are employed in the territory of the Czech Republic on the basis of Agreement No. 227/1993 Coll. Between the Czech Republic and the Slovak Republic on mutual employment of citizens and Administrative Agreement between the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs of the Czech Republic and the Ministry of Labour & Social Affairs & Family of the Slovak Republic related to the Agreement between the Czech Republic and the Slovak Republic on mutual employment of citizens.
A Czech employer shall register a citizen of the Slovak Republic at the Labour Authority in the area of his (her) registered seat. A foreign employer who is sending a Slovak citizen to perform work in the territory of the Czech Republic shall register such person at the Labour Authority in the area where the work will be performed.
The Law allows the possibility of acquiring employees from abroad subject to the condition that such employees may only be acquired for vacancies that have been notified by the employer to the Labour Authority, and for which a Czech citizen, and in particular an applicant for employment cannot be hired. Vacancies mean newly created or vacated jobs for which the employer intends to hire an employee.
An employer shall submit an application for a permit to acquire employees from abroad to the Labour Authority in the area where the work of the future employee will be performed. With the application, the employer shall submit an officially verified copy of the following documents: excerpt from the Business Index, Business Permit or other certification of the statute of the organisation e.g. the foundation instrument of a social organisation, etc. Within the administrative procedure, the employer shall document, on request by the Labour Authority:
- how (s)he has dealt with the lack of labour force (advertisement, labour market, unsuccessful offer for training, etc)
- detailed characteristic of activity for which a foreigner will be hired:
- description of accommodation allowing for assessment whether such accommodation complies with sanitary regulations
A permit to acquire employees from abroad may be issued provided that the employer offers the foreign employee the same labour and salary conditions as are usual for Czech Citizens within the same labour assignment pursuant to the valid regulations or in accordance with collective agreements of labour agreements as appropriate, and that the foreigner will be insured within compulsory social and health insurance.
For this purpose, the Labour Authority shall require that the employer submit a draft labour contract that must include, in addition to information following from the Labour Code (i.e. type of work for which the employee is hired, the place of work and the day of commencement of work):
- the expected term of employment;
- gross salary for the performed work;
- the address of accommodation and the manner of payment therefore.
The draft labour contract shall be accompanied by documents on:
- the manner of ensuring financial means for travelling to the country of residence following termination of the labour relationship (including premature termination)
- officially verified certification of provision of accommodation for the expected term of employment.
When the Labour Authority issues a permit to the employer to acquire employees from abroad, each foreign employee, prior to commencing labour activities for such employer must obtain an employment permit from the locally competent Labour Authority pursuant to the place of employment and the residence permit for the purpose of this employment.
When the Labour Authority issues a permit to the employer to acquire employees from abroad, this employer may only employ foreigners provided that these have:
- a valid employment permit issued by the locally competent Labour Authority
pursuant to the place of employment;
- a valid residence permit for the purpose of employment;
- concluded a written labour contract for a term that is in accordance with the term set by the Labour Authority in the decision on employment permit for such foreigner, and provided that the employer registers these employees for payment of social and health insurance premiums.
The obligation of the employer to notify the Labour Authority within 5 calendar days of hiring an employee for a vacant job (newly-created or vacated) also applies when a foreign employee is hired for such a job.
A permit to acquire employees from abroad is also required for employers who already employ a foreigner on the basis of relevant permits and who intend to transfer such foreigner to a different place of employment outside of the district for which a permit to acquire employees from abroad has been issued.
A permit to acquire employees from abroad is not required for foreign employers who are sending their employees to the Czech Republic to perform work on the basis of a commercial or other agreement concluded with a Czech legal or natural person.
An application for employment permit shall be submitted by a foreigner who:
- intends to be employed in the territory of the Czech Republic within a labour
law relationship with a Czech legal or natural person. This category also includes e.g. company associates, acting officers, members of supervisory boards, chief clerks, limited partners in limited partnerships etc., who in addition to such activity, intend to be in a labour-law relationship with a commercial company founded pursuant to the Commercial Code;
- are in a labour-law relationship with a foreign employer who is sending him (her) to perform work in the territory of the Czech Republic on the basis of a commercial or other agreement concluded with a Czech legal or natural person.
Together with the application, the foreigner shall submit:
- a copy of the page of his (her) passport containing the basic identification information;
- officially verified copy of a document on his (her) professional qualification for the area in which (s)he will work in the territory of the Czech Republic (certificate of apprenticeship, secondary school certificate, certificate of completion of university studies etc.); such document must be translated into Czech language and officially verified;
- health certificate for work in medical professions, restaurants, foodstuff industry or other areas where such certificate is required.
The foreigner shall be a participant in the administrative procedure in which (s)he may be represented by a representative authorised thereby (usually the employer) on the basis and within the scope of the power of attorney.
The Labour Authority shall issue an employment permit for a vacancy reported by the employer for which the employer has obtained a permit to acquire employees from abroad.
The Labour Authority shall also issue an employment permit for reported vacancies for which employees will be hired through voting or designation and for which the employer is not obliged to obtain a permit to acquire employees from abroad. In this case, the employer shall prove in writing that the employee is hired for such job on the basis of voting or designation.
An employment permit is issued for a fixed period of time, however not exceeding one year. A foreigner may apply for an employment permit repeatedly.
An employment permit is not transferable and contains information expressly stated in the decision concerning
- the employer;
- the place of employment;
- type of performed work;
- term of employment.
An employment permit is valid only for employment at the employer set forth in the decision. The permit is also connected with a certain type of work and place of employment. If certain conditions set forth in this employment permit are to change before expiration of validity of the permit, the foreigner is obliged to request the locally competent Labour Authority to issue a new employment permit.
An employment permit is required for all labour-law relationships in the sense of the Labour Code, performed by a foreigner in the territory of the Czech Republic, i.e. employment, secondary employment, agreement on performance of work, agreement on labour activities, also if such labour-law relationships occur concurrently. If a foreigner concurrently performs several jobs in the territory of the Czech Republic, a separate employment permit is required for each employer and this permit must be issued by the locally competent Labour Authority pursuant to the place of the given employment.
During the term of employment, a foreigner who is employed pursuant to the valid regulations of the Czech Republic is subject not only to labour-law regulations, in particular the Labour Code, but also to salary regulations, and regulations on general health insurance and social security.
Special cases of issuing employment permits to foreigners:
- With regard to the situation on the labour market, an employment permit shall also be issued to a foreigner who will be:
- employed in a border region with daily or weekly commutation to the place of his/her residence in the neighbour state;
- a seasonal employee for a term of six months during a calendar year with a period of a least six months between the individual cases of employment;
- employed for the purpose of increasing his(her) abilities and qualification in the given profession (affiliation) for a set period of time not exceeding one year. The term of employment may be prolonged, however not for longer than is necessary for acquiring professional qualification pursuant to the regulations valid in the Czech Republic;
- performing continuous educational activities as a pedagogical assistant or academic assistant of a University;
- Without regard to the situation on the labour market, an employment permit shall be issued to a foreigner:
- designated in an international agreement binding the Czech Republic and published in the Collection of Laws;
- under 26 years of age who is performing occasional and temporary limited work in the framework of a school exchange;
In the above cases the jobs in question are not reported as vacancies and hiring of foreigners for such jobs does not require a permit to acquire employees from abroad pursuant to Article 19 of Law No. 1/1991 Coll., on employment, as amended.
- An employment permit is not required for a foreigner who:
- is granted the position of a refugee or has applied for granting of such a position;
- has a permit for permanent residence in the territory of the Czech Republic;
- is a relative of a member of a diplomatic mission, consulate or a relative of an employee of an international government organisation with a seat in their territory of the Czech Republic provided that reciprocity is guaranteed by an international agreement concluded on behalf of the Government of the Czech Republic. In this case, the employer shall notify the locally competent Labour Authority within 8 working days from commencement of the employment of the foreigner. This notification is important for control and statistical purposes.
- Isan artist, a pedagogical assistance, an academic assistant of a University, a scientific assistant attending a scientific meeting, a pupil or student up to 26 years of age, a sportsman, a person providing for supply of goods or services or supplying such goods in the Czech Republic, a person carrying out assembly on the basis of a commercial contract or carrying out guarantee and repair works, and whose period of stay in the territory of the Czech Republic does not exceed seven consequent calendar days or a total of 30 days during a calendar year. In this case, the employer shall notify the locally competent Labour Authority within 8 working days from commencement of the employment of the foreigner. This notification is important for control and statistical purposes.
- Is employed in the territory of the Czech Republic pursuant to an international agreement binding the Czech Republic and published in the Collection of Laws;
- Is a member of a rescue squad and is providing assistance on the basis of An international agreement on mutual assistance in eliminating consequences of accidents and natural disasters and in case of humanitarian aid;
- is employed in an international public transport;
- is accredited in the media;
- is a member of military forces or a civil unit of a party to the North Atlantic Treaty;
- enjoys diplomatic or consular privileges and immunities pursuant to international law.
- The Law on employment does not apply to a foreigner who:
- performs labour activity on the basis of a small business authorisation and registration in the Business Index;
- performs activities in the territory of the Czech Republic in the framework of mutual affiliations of University students and young University graduates provided that this is carried under the following conditions:
- the purpose of the mutual affiliation consists in education, including "life-long" education;
- the potential employment is a part of such education;
- the income of the foreigner in the territory of the Czech Republic is not derived from his (her) working performance and the conditions for providing such income are based on an agreement with the foreign organisation sending the foreigner for such affiliation (usually by means of a fellowship or contribution from a fund), and not on a labour contract or any other individually concluded labour-law agreement with a legal or natural person with a seat in the Czech Republic.
The above conditions may be proved through a contract (usually on international co-operation in education) on the basis of which the foreigner has been sent to the Czech Republic.
Procedure in issuing employment permits to foreigners in the framework of commercial or other agreements.
An employment permit is also required for a foreigner who will perform work in the territory of the Czech Republic within a labour-law relationship with a foreign employer who is sending him (her) to perform work on the basis of a commercial or other agreement concluded with a Czech legal or natural person.
The procedure of making decisions on an application of a foreigner for an employment permit is similar as for a foreigner who will be employed within a labour-law relation with a Czech legal or natural person.
Furthermore, a copy of the commercial or other agreement concluded by the foreign legal or natural person and the Czech legal or natural person, and a copy of the document authorising the foreign entity to carry out activities that are the subject matter of the commercial or other agreement shall be annexed to the application for an employment permit. For a group of persons such documents shall be submitted in a single copy. The foreign employer shall submit such annexes translated into Czech and officially verified. A foreigner employed by a foreign employer and sent to perform work in the Czech Republic shall be remunerated in accordance with the labour contract concluded with his(her) employer. The concluded labour contract, as well as health insurance and social security, shall usually be subject to regulations valid in the country of the employer who is fully responsible for the contents of the contract, as well as for the payment of insurance premiums.
Employment of foreigners in the framework of international agreements
Employment of foreigners on the basis of international agreements is subject to valid regulations unless such agreement lays down otherwise.
International agreements respect regulations of the parties thereto and take into account requirements of the parties for administrative procedure on mutual employment and/or allow for laying down limits for the number of employed foreigners for the individual calendar years. The procedures of the Labour Authority in issuing, refusing issue and withdrawing foreigner's employment permits are usually laid down in the principles of the pertinent international agreements or protocols thereto.
Repeated issue of an employment permit and residence permit
Prior to expiry of the term of validity of an employment permit, a foreigner may submit application to the competent Labour Authority for a new (repeated) issue of the employment permit.
The competent authorities of SCPP pursuant to the place of residence decide on prolonging residence permits.
Expiration of validity of an employment permit - Sanctions
- The validity of an employment permit extinguishes
- with expiry of the period for which it was issued;
- with termination of the employment prior to expiry of the period for which the employment permit was issued;
- with expiry of the period for which a residence permit was issued or with cancellation of a residence permit for other reasons.
- An employment permit shall be withdrawn from a foreigner on the basis of a decision by the Labour Authority if the foreigner fails to comply with the conditions laid down in the decision on the employment permit. A specimen form of a decision on withdrawing an employment permit is available on the OK system.
- A foreigner who is employed without an employment permit may be punished pursuant to regulations valid for this area.
- An employer who employs a foreigner without the pertinent permits may be punished pursuant to regulations valid in the area of employment.