Blue cards for foreigners in the Czech Republic
What is a blue card?
The blue card is a permit for long-term residence for employment purposes in the Czech Republic under special circumstances. A foreigner who has a blue card is entitled to:
- reside in the Czech Republic and
- work in a job for which the blue card was issued, and change that job under the conditions specified.
A blue card therefore combines both the residence and work permit.
The blue card is issued to workers with higher professional or university education who have an employment contract for at least one year, for the statutory weekly work hours, and who have an agreed upon gross monthly or annual salary amounting to at least a 1.5 multiple of the gross annual salary in the Czech Republic announced in a Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs communication.
The blue card is valid for the term of employment set in the employment contract plus 3 months, but to a maximum of 2 years.
Who is the blue card for?
The blue card makes for easier access to the job market for foreigners with a higher qualification that is in demand in the Czech Republic. The completion of university education, or higher specialised education where the studies lasted for at least 3 years, is required.
The blue card is for foreigners from countries that are not members of the European Union and to which an exemption listed in Section 98 and Section 98a of Act No. 435/2004 Coll., on Employment, applies.
Notice: Citizens of European Union countries, Norway, Iceland, Lichtenstein and Switzerland their family members do not need an employee card, blue card or work permit to work in the Czech Republic.
How to get a blue card?
The Czech Republic is doing its best to simplify the procedure for issuing blue cards. You will still need to go through several stages:
1. Find an available job
The blue card is issued for a specific job vacancy in the Czech Republic. Jobs available for blue cards are primarily those that have not been successfully filled by workers from the Czech Republic or the EU.
Jobs for blue card holders can be found in the central register of job vacancies available for blue card holders (hereinafter referred to as the " register of vacancies available for blue cards") accessible on the Internet.
Here you can check whether a blue card can be issued for a job you have found out about somewhere else.
For each of the job vacancies you can find important information about this job. Here you can also find the application form for the blue card.
2. Contact your future employer
A concluded employment contract is enclosed with a blue card application. Contact your employer and arrange the conditions under which your employment contract will be concluded.
The employer's contact information can be found by the job vacancy. You can complete a structured CV in the section Job offers and CV. You can also use the link "request for a job vacancy" located by the majority of offers.
3. Submit an application
The application for an blue card is submitted at the relevant embassy of the Czech Republic in accordance with with Decree of the Ministry of Interior No. 429/2010 Coll. (278.86kB), which defines exceptions from the obligation of a foreigner to apply for a visa or residence permit at the locally relevant embassy. Citizens of countries that are stated in this Decree may submit an blue card application at any embassy of the CR.
In the Czech Republic, a foreigner may submit the application directly at the Department of Asylum and Migration Policy of the Ministry of the Interior during their stay in the Czech Republic for a visa for a stay of more than 90 days or a long-term residence permit.
- The application for the blue card can be found on the Internet. You can print out a blank form and complete it by hand or complete it directly on the Internet, print it out, and bring it to the embassy or office of the Ministry of Interior.
- In the application, you must write the number and description of the vacancy for which you have an employment contract concluded. You can find this number in the register of vacancies available for blue cards or from your employer in the Czech Republic.
- You must also submit:
- a valid travel document (the validity of the travel document must be at least 90 days beyond the expected duration of the blue card)
- 2 current photographs
- documentation to demonstrate the high qualification required for the selected job (documents on attained education) – these documents must be validated and recognized by the Czech Ministry of Education; Submit originals or official copies and also official translations of these documents into Czech. Foreign public documents must be provided with an Apostille or superlegalization.
- a document showing that accommodation has been secured for the term of your stay in the country
- an employment contract for a job requiring a high qualification for a term of at least one year, for the statutory weekly work hours (the agreed gross monthly or annual salary must correspond to at least a 1.5 multiple of the gross annual salary in the Czech Republic announced by a Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs communication)
- in the event of a regulated profession, a document certifying compliance with the requirements for that job
- You may also be asked for:
- a medical report showing that you are not suffering from a serious illness
- a document similar to an extract from the Criminal Register; if you are not asked for this document by the embassy, the Ministry of the Interior is entitled to ask for the document after entry into the Czech Republic.
A detailed description of these requirements is available here and general information about Blue card applications is available on the website of the Ministry of the Interior.
Physicians, dentists, and pharmacists who have not acquired professional qualification in another EU member state and wish to practice their medical profession in the Czech Republic must successfully complete an approbation exam The same requirement also applies to the practice of a non-medical healthcare profession.
For more information, contact the employer or see the Ministry of Health website: www.mzcr.cz, section Professional, Healthcare Professional - Education and Training Recognition.
For the submission of the application at the embassy, you will pay a fee of CZK 1,000 in the equivalent amount in the foreign currency.
Your application will be delivered to the Department of Asylum and Migration Policy of the Ministry of the Interior, which will assess it and decide whether to grant it.
4. Come to the Czech Republic
As a rule, the embassy will inform you within 2 months from the submission of your blue card application, as to whether it has been granted. If it has, you will receive from the embassy a visa for residence over 90 days for the purpose of getting your blue card and you can come to the Czech Republic.
Before the visa is put in your passport you will be asked to submit a valid travel health insurance document.
In the Czech Republic then, within 3 working days of entering the country:
- Present yourself to provide biometric data and later collect your blue card at the agreed office of the department of asylum and migration policy of the Ministry of the Interior. You will pay a fee of CZK 2,500 for the issued blue card.
- At the Foreigners' Police Inspectorate relevant to your place of residence in the Czech Republic, register your stay . When declaring your residence submit the document securing accommodation (lease, sublease, etc.). If you do not have this, you must supply it within 10 days of your arrival in the Czech Republic. You may also register at a Ministry of Interior office.
Once you have received a certificate confirming that you have fulfilled the conditions for issuing an employee card, you can commence work, so report to your employer immediately.
A change of employer or employment of the blue card holder is subject to the prior approval of the Ministry of the Interior within the first 2 years of residence in the Czech Republic. After 2 years in the territory, the blue card holder is obliged to notify the Ministry of these changes within 3 business days. For more information, visit the Ministry of Interior website.