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New regulation of the employment of foreigners

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In the Czech Republic a significant amendment of the Act on the Residence of Foreigners and other related acts came into force on 24 June 2014. This article by Nataša Randlová and Lucie Hořejší from our Czech member firm Randl Partners provides an analysis of the changes.

Originally posted on the Ius Laboris Knowledge Base: www.globalhrlaw.com

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New regulation of the employment of foreigners

  1. 1.   New regulation of the employment of foreigners Publication Date: 8 July 2014 | Author(s): Nataša Randlová, Lucie Hořejší Member Firm(s): Randl Partners Country: Czech Republic The Act No. 101/2014 Coll. was passed due to the obligation of the Czech Republic to implement the Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council 2011/98/EU of 13 December 2011 on a single application procedure for a single permit for third country nationals to reside and work in the territory of a Member State and on a common set of rights for third country workers legally residing in a Member State (“Directive”). It will mainly influence the foreigners from third-countries who want to be employed in the Czech Republic and consequently also the employers who employ the third-country employees. I. The scope of the amendment Together with the Act on the Residence of Foreigners, there have also been other regulations amended by the above stated act, e.g. the Act on Employment, the Labour Code, other acts in the social area or the Act on the Recognition of Professional Qualifications. A number of the suggested changes were formerly included in a package of completely new foreign policy regulations – the package, however, failed to be passed due to the dissolution of the previous government in July 2013. With regard to the obligation of the Czech Republic to implement the Directive as of the end of 2013, this amendment has been prepared. II. New Employee card After the above stated act comes into effect, a new type of single permit will be issued to foreigners who want to be employed in the Czech Republic – the Employee card will stand both for the permit for a long-term stay and the permit to be employed in a particular position. Therefore, neither the foreigners, nor their future employers will be obliged to apply for an employment permit at the Labour Office of the Czech Republic in addition to the residence permit. The Employee card will thus have (primarily) dual character, likewise the present Green cards and Blue cards. While the Blue cards will be further issued as a special kind of residence permit for highly qualified employees, the Green cards will be cancelled. It will be possible to file an application for the employee card with the representative body in the foreigner’s country of residence, or, in the case of foreigners who have already been staying in the Czech Republic for a long time it can be filed at the Ministry of the Interior. After the introduction of the Employee card, the current employment permit is to be issued by the Labour Office only in some specific cases, e.g. in the case of the posting of workers to the Czech Republic by a foreign employer, seasonal employment, internships etc. Also these foreigners will be obliged to apply for the Employee card; in this case, however, it will only serve as the residence permit. Neither Employee card nor Blue card/current employment permit is needed in cases where a foreigner is posted by his/her foreign employer to a Czech employer for a period not exceeding 6
  2. 2.     months, exclusively for the purpose of increasing qualification and skills required for work performance at the foreign employer outside the Czech Republic. In the case of such contractual posting of employees between the foreign and the Czech employer, the Czech company is only obliged to inform the relevant branch of the Labour Office about this procedure. Employee cards and Blue cards are to be issued for available work positions listed in the central evidence of available work positions governed by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs, if these positions have not been filled by other job applicants during the first 30 days from their announcement to the Labour Office. However, should particular position fit to any Czech/EU job applicant, the MoLSA will be authorized, either to not list this position in the central evidence or remove it to ensure the protection of the labour market in the Czech Republic. The same MoLSA procedure also applies in the case of a particular employer offering an available work position despite having been fined for illegal work during the last 12 months. For the issuing of the Employee card, the foreigner will have to submit an employment contract or agreement to perform work (eventually, future agreement leading to the above mentioned) with a weekly working hours in the minimal extent of 15 hours along with the salary amounting minimally up to the basic monthly rate of minimal wage, regardless of the agreed extent of work. If the Employee card (and now also the Blue card) is to be issued for a regulated employment, the foreigner will also be obliged to submit a document approving the fulfillment of all conditions for the performance of such employment according to the Act on the Recognition of Professional Qualifications. The fee for issuing the Employee card amounts up to CZK 1000. The Employee card will be issued for the time period of the agreed employment relationship, but always for a minimum 3 months and a maximum 2 years. It will be possible to submit an application for the extension of the card (again, for a 2 year maximum) or an application for a change of work position, at the Ministry of the Interior. The Ministry, however, can deny any such extension based on a negative statement of the Labour Office, stating that any further employment of the particular foreigner cannot be approved considering the current situation in the labour market (e.g. the given position will fit to any Czech or EU citizen). Along with the introduction of the Employee cards, also an amendment to the Labour Code has been made, stating that the employment relationship of foreigners shall, among other reasons, automatically terminate with the expiration of the Employee card. III. Other changes In accordance with the amended Act on Employment, employers will nolonger be obliged to negotiate about their intention to employ foreigners with the Labour Office. Instead of negotiating, the employer will now only have to inform the Labour Office about such intention. Based on the implementation of the Directive, the scope of persons entitled to the benefits of the state social support as well as to custody benefits (as provided according to the Act on Social Services), has been extended. Newly, the above stated benefits will also be provided to: • foreigners to whom an Employee card has been issued. • foreigners who are currently being employed in the Czech Republic or were employed for at least 6 months and are now being listed in the evidence of job applicants and, at the same time, they meet the condition of the long-term residence in the Czech Republic, and • family members of the above stated foreigners and also family members of foreigners who have
  3. 3.     been issued a Blue card provided that the long-term residence permit was issued to them. Taken from the Ius Laboris Knowledge Base: www.globalhrlaw.com About Ius Laboris Ius Laboris is an alliance of law firms offering employers cross-border employment and pensions law advice. It has 1,300 specialist HR lawyers in over 150 cities and 44 countries. Ius Laboris offers access to the best local HR law experts in one global team with 20% more ranked employment lawyers (Chambers & Partners, November 2013) than any other global HR legal services organisation. Further, Ius Laboris has 50% more recommended lawyers than its nearest rival in a recent survey in PLC's employment law guide. Clients include many household names as well as multinational companies in all sectors ranging from energy, retail and technology to pharmaceuticals. For more information on Ius Laboris, please visit iuslaboris.com.

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