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Residence permit in the Czech Republic

Residence permit in the Czech Republic

A residence permit in the Czech Republic is issued to foreigners for long-term residence (more than three months) in accordance with one of the legal grounds. The holder of the residency status can stay in the country for a specified period of time (usually up to 2 years with the right to extend it), work, study, use the services of European banks and modern clinics. Some immigration types of residence permits allow you to subsequently naturalize in the state, i.e., to obtain permanent residence and citizenship, which in total takes from 10 years from the moment of relocation.

The issuance of a temporary residence permit in the Czech Republic is regulated by the Act No. 326/1999 “On the Residence of Foreigners”. The main condition for obtaining residence is proof of an official reason for long-term stay in the country. The residence permit is canceled if the reason becomes irrelevant, the card is valid for a limited period of time without guarantee of reissuance, the status does not equate the owner in the rights of Czech citizens (for example, you cannot work in government agencies, go abroad for more than six months and count on the protection of the state abroad).

It is possible to obtain the rights of a Czech citizen as a passport holder of any other European Union country. EU citizens can move to their favorite agreement state for permanent residence without additional conditions. You can analyze your chances of participating in the simplified procedure of obtaining an EU passport during a free consultation with an international law specialist.

What does the residence permit status give?

With a Czech residence permit, an immigrant receives the following privileges:

  • stay in the republic for up to 24 months with the right to extend this period and without restrictions on the number of trips abroad;
  • the possibility of inviting close relatives to live with them; the right to obtain the status of a Czech citizen (not for all types of residence permits);
  • access to the European health care and education system on favorable terms not available to non-residents;
  • opening personal and corporate accounts in local banks without restrictions on international transfers;
  • travel without a visa to Schengen states under the regime of “90 days of stay out of consecutive 180 days”;
  • access to official employment and business in the territory of the country (with restrictions for some types of residence permits, for example, those issued for non-immigration reasons);
  • Receipt of social support, financial subsidies on status and state assistance for integration into society.

Ways of obtaining a residence permit

It is possible to obtain a residence permit in the Czech Republic for those who have a legally justified reason to move to the country for a period of more than three months. Common reasons for immigration are employment, training, opening and running a business, investing in the local economy, reunification with close relatives. In any case, the foreigner must be law-abiding, capable and financially secure. The standard procedure of Czech residency is as follows:

  1. Preparation of a dossier in accordance with the grounds for the opening of residence permit.
  2. Visit the Czech diplomatic mission and submit a request for a long-term visa.
  3. Obtaining the visa, moving to the Czech Republic and registering by the police authorities at the place of residence.
  4. Submitting a request for a resident card to the internal affairs authorities until the long-term visa is canceled.
  5. Obtaining a residence permit after undergoing a photo and fingerprinting procedure.

Investments

The Czech Republic grants foreigners a residence permit for investments in the economy of the republic. The minimum financial threshold for participation in the program is about three million euros. The money cannot be invested directly: it can be invested in business development, company registration, purchase of tangible and intangible assets for the company. This type of residence permit is opened immediately at the Czech consulate, without a visa, and only with the approval of the Ministry of Industry and Trade.

The authorized body checks the legality of the origin of the investor's funds, the significance of his contribution for the benefit of the state, region or municipality. The applicant will need to create 20 jobs for the entire duration of the residence permit, i.e., for two years, and keep them when the document is re-issued. You can only invest in a company in which the immigrant owns at least part of the assets. The use of finances is not regulated: for example, you can spend them on opening a new office or training for employees.

Starting a business

Foreign entrepreneurs can apply for Czech residency to conduct business activities in the country. There are no restrictions on the scope of business: you can open any company, register as a self-employed person or as a trade representative. First, a long-term visa with the same purpose is opened, which is given for a maximum of one year and allows you to move to the Czech Republic to formalize documentary issues. After opening a business, the applicant applies to the Ministry of the Interior and provides proof of registration from the relevant register.

Business visas and residence permits for foreigners can be issued subject to annual limits. Czech authorities check the legality of the invested funds, financial security of the immigrant, and the prospects of his startup for the republic. It is possible to do business in the Czech Republic without any requirements on the amount of start-up capital, which attracts many entrepreneurs. Representatives of the authorities have the right to additionally request from the applicant a declaration of exemption from the secrecy of the tax inspection to make sure that he or she pays the mandatory contributions correctly.

Employment

Working in the Czech Republic gives the right to formalize the status of temporary resident. However, it is not so easy for local companies to invite a foreigner. First, the employer obtains permission from the Bureau of Labor, which checks that there are no Czech citizens or residents for the specified position. If the request is approved, the foreigner is issued an employee card for up to two years. A work residence permit can be issued directly in the Czech Republic, regardless of the reason for staying in the country, or through a diplomatic mission.

For economic benefit, the Czech Republic has also introduced several programs of simplified employment for foreigners. They are aimed at specialists with narrow qualifications, digital nomads, research staff. You can request a residence permit in such a case without opening a visa, including counting on accelerated processing of the request within 30 days. Highly qualified employees have the right to immigrate to the Czech Republic immediately with their family.

Like other EU countries, the Czech Republic issues the EU Blue Card to foreign employees. A specialist document is granted to those who are employed with a salary of 1.5 times the national average rate (about 3000 EUR monthly in 2024), who can prove their experience and qualifications with documents, in particular with a diploma from a university. Blue Card holders have special preferences, such as family immigration and the possibility to move to other EU countries for work.

Education

Foreign students have the opportunity to obtain residency status in the Czech Republic. A residence permit is granted to those who study at a secondary school, higher vocational school or university, including those who attend international exchange programs. The Czech Republic is one of the few countries in Europe that also grants residence permits to students of language courses and attendees of vocational training programs. Trainees and those who improve their existing level of qualification can also apply for temporary residence.

Student residence permit is issued in the standard procedure, after obtaining a long-term visa, if the foreigner lives abroad. First, it is necessary to obtain a certificate of enrollment in the appropriate educational course and, if necessary, to pay tuition fees. After that, a package of documents for a visa is collected, and upon arrival in the Czech Republic - a resident card is opened. The Republic does not restrict students in employment opportunities during their studies, which is also rare for EU countries.

Marriage and family reunion

Holders of a Czech residence permit/permanent residence permit/passport can invite close relatives to live together. As a standard procedure, reunification is granted to the wife/husband, children under 18 years of age and single parents over 65 years of age. Other relatives of the host country can also obtain a residence permit if they prove that it is necessary, e.g., they are unable to take care of themselves.

Holders of a Czech residence permit can only invite relatives to stay with them after 15 months of continuous residence in the country. There is no such restriction for permanent residents and citizens of the republic. The applicant must prove that he/she has sufficient funds to provide for all invited family members, who will be considered his/her dependents. He is also obliged to provide his relatives with housing of sufficient square footage where they can register.

Real estate in Czech Republic

It is not possible to directly obtain a residence permit in the Czech Republic when buying real estate. However, it is possible to purchase a residential or commercial property as a business asset and qualify for a corresponding residence permit. For example, a potential investor can open several new offices for a company in which he is a shareholder and apply for a residence card.

Also, every immigrant in any case needs a place to live in the Czech Republic, in which a permanent residence permit should be issued. If there is no desire to rent an apartment, it can be purchased and registered with the police. The Czech authorities are more willing to approve residence permits for those who are financially secure and are able to take care of their own living arrangements without seeking social support.

Those wishing to move to the Czech Republic can obtain an EU passport under a simplified procedure. EU citizenship can be issued within 8 months, without taking a language test, providing proof of income and renouncing the existing status in the home country. You can get detailed information from specialized lawyers.

Required package of documents

To obtain a residence permit in the Czech Republic, you need to prepare the following documents:

  • a foreign (service, diplomatic) passport with a validity period of at least six months;
  • a unified application form, which can be found on the website of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Czech Republic;
  • proof of residence registration/lease or purchase agreement;
  • proof of sufficient financial security to live without applying for social help (on average about 200 EUR for each month of stay in the country);
  • receipt of payment of the administrative fee (standard rate of the fee is approximately 100 EUR);
  • a recent photo without retouching of 3.5 x 4.5 cm;
  • civil status certificates - marriage, birth of children (if applicable, e.g., in case of family immigration);
  • documentary proof of the right to apply for a residence permit, e.g., employment contract, business registration certificate, certificate of enrollment in language courses.

If any of the documents are in a language other than Czech or Slovak, they must be officially translated and notarized. If necessary, an apostille legalization will also be required for the dossier, e.g., when submitting a higher education diploma to obtain an EU Blue Card.

Reasons for refusal and how to deal with that

The status of a Czech resident may be denied if an incomplete set of documents is submitted or if there are gross mistakes in the formation of the dossier. The request is rejected if the applicant is recognized as persona non grata, including if he or she is not allowed to enter the country and other Schengen states. Those who provide incorrect or incomplete information about themselves, try to falsify certificates and statements, violate the norms of migration legislation are rejected. The decision can be challenged in court, but such processes are usually won by the state side.

For a guaranteed relocation to the Czech Republic, it is worth using the support of international law specialists. Specialized lawyers perform most of the tasks for the applicant, which excludes mistakes in the migration process and makes it possible to quickly and easily obtain the required status abroad.

Is it possible to lose the status?

A residence permit is a temporary document that expires after a specified period. Unlike citizenship, a residence permit can be revoked and a foreigner can be deported from the state. This usually happens when violating national laws, including in the field of migration. The residence permit is revoked or not renewed if the applicant no longer has a legal reason to stay in the country, for example, the work contract has ended. Also, the residence permit is revoked if its holder goes abroad for more than 6 months without a valid reason.

An alternative to registration of a residence permit in the Czech Republic is to obtain a passport of another EU country. With it a foreigner has the right to move to the republic for permanent residence, without selecting the grounds for immigration. It takes 12 months to obtain a passport of an EU country in a simplified procedure. To learn more about the program of obtaining a passport of the European Union with the subsequent simplified relocation to the Czech Republic, you can get a free consultation with lawyers.

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