Residence and work permits don’t have to be accessed before you arrive in the Czech Republic, but you will find it a lot simpler here if you arrange everything before you come. Should you decide to deal with things after entering the country with your tourist stamp or visa, or you can’t complete the procedure before your arrival, be aware that you might need to inform the foreign policy instantly. In any case, take note that this process is complicated and long-winded. The red tape here is excruciating because there’s a huge demand for residency status in the Czech Rep. Prague remains an appealing location to work and live for Western Europeans, North Americans and Eastern Europeans like Poles, Ukrainians and Slovaks who have prospects for more lucrative employment than what they have on offer at home. Simultaneously, the increasing levels of joblessness in the Czech Rep force the government to restrict the number of work permits.
If you’re employed legally or related to a person who is employed legally, or if you’re a student in the Czech Rep and if you’ve got legal residence, you can acquire a long stay permit that allows you access to every opportunity that Czechs enjoy here, like state-funded health insurance. They’re two kinds of long-stay permits additional to the normal tourist passport stamps or visas: 1) standard long-stay status, usable for one year with unrestricted re- validations; and 2) permanent residency permits—only allowed in cases of permanent relationships to Czech nationals, like marriage.
You have to fill in all of the forms and give all apostilled and/or- notarized and translated literature precisely as instructed—and the rules change regularly. Because of this, the info given here is only for general guidance. Ask the Czech Embassy in your native country before you leave. You might find it prudent to hire a good solicitor to assist with the mass of paperwork; we’ve named some of these firms at the end of the book. If you’re entering Prague as a worker for a Czech or foreign firm (including a school of language), they ought to have the relevant knowledge of the processes. If you’re a scholar, then your overseas study program (or the International Students Office at your College) ought to be able to assist.
To acquire a long stay permit, you have to submit numerous documents, including a permit of residency; a valid reason to stay (i.e. a Czech Trade Licence, Work Permit, Student Visa or a connection to someone who has one of these things); evidence of a clean criminal record abroad and in the Czech Rep; and proof of financial stability (which can include evidence of enough money in a Czech bank account and/or notarised credit card bills). For each of these forms, you will have to enter your details and give your passport photos (and passport); you should, additionally, take the original copies of your marriage and birth certificates and the appropriate university papers or trade licences that you own to speed up the process.