Blue Card

A blue card is a type of a long-term residence permit that enables third country citizens to stay and work legally in the Czech Republic for a period longer than 3 months at a position requiring high qualifications.

GENERAL INFO

TO APPLY IN CZECHIA

TO APPLY FROM OUTSIDE CZECHIA

EXTENSION

CHANGE OF EMPLOYMENT

Who can apply for a blue card?

You can apply for a blue card in the territory of the Czech Republic at a Ministry of the Interior office if:

  • you are already residing in the country based on a visa for a stay longer than 90 days,
  • you are already residing in the country based on a long-term residence permit for another purpose,
  • you are a holder of a blue card issued in another EU Member State,
  • you are already residing in the country based on a long-term visa for the purpose of seasonal work,
  • you have been granted international protection status in the Czech Republic (asylum or subsidiary protection).

You cannot apply for a blue card if:

  • you are applying for a long-term residence permit for the purpose of scientific research,
  • you are a resident of another EU Member State and you are residing in the country based on a long-term residence permit of an EU Member States’ resident for the purpose of employment or doing business,
  • you are residing in the Czech Republic under an international agreement binding for the Czech Republic and facilitating entrance and temporary residence for some categories of natural persons regarding business and investment,
  • you have been transferred to the country to work under a cross-border provision of services in the Czech Republic,
  • you have been granted temporary protection in the Czech Republic or you have applied for it.

How and where can you apply?

Only in person at one of the Ministry of the Interior offices.


When do you have to submit the application?

At the latest the last day of your current long-term residence’s or visa’s validity, at the earliest 120 days before its expiration.

If you hold a blue card issued by another EU Member State, you must file your application within 1 month from the date you entered the Czech Republic. The same applies to your family members.


What is the administrative fee?

CZK 2,500 in the form of stamps.


What is the time limit to process the application?

90 days.

The time limit is not running if the proceedings are suspended or if there is a legal ground for it.


STEPS TO FOLLOW IN ORDER TO APPLY FOR A BLUE CARD IN THE CZECH REPUBLIC:

1. Prepare necessary documents

In order to apply you will need:

  • Travel document.
  • Proof of accommodation.
  • Work contract for employment requiring high qualifications or a pre-employment contract closed for at least 6 months with weekly working hours stipulated by law that also includes the agreed amount of gross monthly or annual salary corresponding to at least 1.5 times the average gross annual salary.
  • Certificate proving high qualifications (a completed higher vocational or university education of at least 3 years) or a confirmation on professional skills issued by employer (this condition is valid in cases defined by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs).
    • Not applied in case you worked as blue card holder in another Member State of the EU for more than 2 years.
  • Document certifying compliance with the requirements for regulated professions if the job at hand is a regulated profession.
  • Photograph.

Upon request provide also:

If your employer is an employment agency:

  • Besides the above-mentioned requirements, you must provide other documents stipulated by law.

If you hold a blue card issued by another EU Member State and you are applying from the Czech Republic, prepare also:

Upon application you must pay an administrative fee of CZK 2,500 in the form of stamps.

If you want your application to be processed as soon as possible, you have to provide all the necessary documents already when submitting the application. If your application is incomplete, the Ministry of the Interior can suspend the administrative proceedings, which may lead to prolonging the application processing time (for more information please see the section additions to the application).

However, if there is a time limit for submitting the application stipulated by law and you do not have all the necessary documents yet, submit the application anyway, even though it may be incomplete. As if the time limit expires, your right to reside in the Czech Republic may cease to exist along with it.

Please review the formal requirements that the documents must meet.

2. Fill in the application form

You can fill in the application form online. Then print out the filled-in form and sign it.

You can also download a blank application form, print it out and fill it in by hand – it must be filled in legibly, in block capitals,  in Latin characters, and in Czech. You can also collect the form free of charge at one of the offices of the Ministry of the Interior.

In the form, please state the number of the vacancy registered in the Central Database of Job Vacancies for which blue card holders can be hired. Your employer will give you this number.

3. Make an appointment to go to a Ministry of the Interior office

Make an appointment online or by phone beforehand in order to submit your application. Although a timely appointment reservation saves your time, it is not a necessary condition for submitting the application – with no appointment reservation you have to wait for your turn.

The lack of accessible slots in the schedule of appointments does not justify your failure to submit the application in due time. If the closest accessible date of appointment is after your time limit for submitting the application expires (for example your visa-free stay would already have expired), submit the application without prior reservation. For more details see your office’s opening hours (choose the appropriate office according to the location of your reported address) to find out, which is the earliest permissible date that you can appear in person, without having made a prior reservation.

4. Submit the application

You must submit the application for a blue card in person at a Ministry of the Interior office. If you submit the application in person, you will receive a slip confirming the submission and a reference number assigned to your application. You need to know the reference number, for example, to be able to track the state of your proceedings.

If you have submitted your application within the given time limit, during the time when your application is being processed you are staying in the Czech Republic legally, even if your current residence permit or visa expires (for more information please see the section Fiction of Residence). This is the case, with some exceptions, until a final decision on your application is taken. At the Ministry of the Interior offices you can also apply for a certificate confirming permission for your residence (Bridging Visa). A Bridging Visa allows you, for example, to leave the Czech Republic and return again during the time when your application is being processed.

5. Wait for the decision

The Ministry of the Interior will assess your application in administrative proceedings. If any errors are detected in the attached documents, you will be prompted in writing to remedy such errors. In the notice, the Ministry will explain in detail what the errors are and what you have to do to remedy them. It will also set a time limit for you to do so. When justified and if you apply for it in writing, this time limit can be extended.

The Ministry of the Interior also checks if you meet the requirements to obtain the residence permit you are applying for. In such case you may be invited for an interview.

In the course of the administrative proceedings you can:

You can track the state of your proceedings online on the website under Status of my Application or in your personal account. If you were prompted to provide documents or to remedy errors, the time limit for processing your application is not running until the errors are remedied or for as long as it is established in the notice.

For more information on the state of your application you can submit a written Application for a Notification on the State of the Proceedings. You can find the most common reasons for why processing may take longer in the Database of Frequently Asked Questions.

6. Learn the result of the administrative proceedings

On the website under Status of my application you can see the following states:

  • Being processed: No decision has been taken yet. For more information on what you can do in the course of the administrative proceedings please see the previous section.
  • Granted: The Ministry’s decision is affirmative. Please see the following section.
  • Rejected: The Ministry rejected your application or closed the proceedings. In such a case you will receive the decision in writing. You can appeal against the decision within 15 days of the date you were notified of the decision.

  • The decision to reject the application consists of three basic parts:
    1. The Statement: It contains specific legal provisions based on which the application was rejected. It may also advise you that you must leave the country, including the time limit in which you must do so.
    2. The Statement of Grounds: It explains why the application was rejected and what documents and proofs served as grounds for the decision on your application.
    3. Your rights: It informs you on how to proceed if you wish to appeal against the decision.

  • The decision to close the proceedings consists of three basic parts:
    1. The Statement: It contains specific legal provisions based on which the proceedings were closed.
    2. The Statement of Grounds: It describes the procedure and grounds that led to the proceedings being closed.
    3. Your rights: It informs you on how to proceed if you wish to appeal against the decision.

You may have only received a record of the decision to close the proceedings because in your case the proceedings were closed for reasons stipulated by law in which case the applicant does not receive a written decision (Section 169r (2) of Act No. 326/1999 Coll). 

7. Make your appointment to have your biometric data taken

If the application is granted, make an appointment by phone to have your biometric data taken. Please note that the appointment date is binding and you must follow the Administrative Procedure Code if you request a reschedule or cancellation.

8. Come to have your biometric data taken

Come to the scheduled biometric data scanning appointment. Take your travel document with you. At the biometric data scanning you will agree on a date to collect your completed biometric card.

The Ministry of the Interior will also issue you a Confirmation of Compliance. Having received this confirmation, you can start your employment.

9. Collect your residence permit (biometric card)

The final step is to collect your residence permit (biometric card). The time limit for collection is 60 days from the date you had your biometric data scanned.