CZECH REPUBLIC – New Labour Registration Requirement Applied Retroactively – Equivalency Process Required for Degree Certificates
The Ministry of Labour in the Czech Republic has confirmed that the new requirement for non-EU nationals to be registered with the labour office (see previous alert here) is to be applied retroactively; that is to say, must be completed for all non-EU nationals currently working in the Czech Republic. Additionally, it has been announced that, effective immediately, all applications for work permits for local hires must be supported by a degree certificate that has not only been legalised/Apostilled for use in the Czech Republic, but also has been officially recognised as equivalent to a Czech qualification.
As previously advised, with the implementation of the new labour code (Act 435/2004) non-EU nationals are now required to register with the labour office, at the latest, on the day they commence work. The new announcement (based on an addition to paragraph 87 of the new labour code) makes it clear that this condition applies also to all foreign employees (both local hires and assignees/secondees) who commenced work in the Czech Republic before 1 January 2012. The registration must be completed before 1 April 2012.
Local Labour Offices
The labour office in Prague has confirmed the new requirement, but officials working at labour offices in other regions (e.g. Brno, Olomouc, Novy Jicin, Breclav) were not yet aware of the new requirement. However, according to the spokesperson of the Ministry of Labour and Social affairs, all labour offices will be informed in the near future.
Degree Certificate Equivalency
Additionally, effective 23 January 2012, all work permit applications for non-EU nationals who will be hired locally (be on Czech payroll) will require a legalised diploma with equivalency certificate (“nostrification”). Further details of this process can be found here. Previously this process was required only in very specific cases; it will now be a standard requirement for local hire work permit applications. This new requirement will greatly extend overall processing time for local work permit applications. The equivalency process takes at least 4-8 weeks, but can take several months. We expect processing times to further increase due to the new requirement placing an additional burden on the offices carrying out the equivalency checks.
- Note that the new labour office registration requirement for non-EU nationals applies to all non-Eu nationals working in the Czech Republic: review your expatriate population and ensure that all non-EU nationals are registered before April 2012. Contact Peregrine or International Business Support (link below) directly for more information.
- Note that the requirement to have degree certificates subjected to equivalency checks will increase required lead time for local hire work permit applications by an estimated 6-8 weeks, or even more, and plan accordingly.