Are you a third-country citizen who has been transferred to Czechia from abroad within one big corporation? Then you’re most likely here on an intra-company employee transfer card. This long-term residence permit allows you to stay and work in this country under specific conditions. What are these conditions? And what if you decide to switch to a different type of residence permit or change your employer?
Foreigners with an ICT card can stay in Czechia for up to 3 years.
What is an ICT card?
An intra-company employee transfer card (also known as an ICT card) shares many similarities with an employee card, because it’s also a long-term residence permit. In other words, it is intended for stays over 90 days. But as opposed to an employee card, an ICT card is meant for international employees who have been transferred to Czechia within one corporation.
More specifically, if you’re here on an ICT card, it means you have been transferred to the Czech Republic from one functioning office of a supra-national company outside of the EU to a functioning office in this country.
The contract is therefore signed between the Czech office and the “controlling company” abroad. You are still an employee of the controlling company even when you’re here.
With an ICT card, you are allowed to:
The card is issued for the duration of your stay as a transferred employee. The maximum length of this stay is 3 years (for specialists and managers) and 1 year (for interns).
Who can come here on an ICT card
ICT card is a permit for transferred managers, specialists and (employed) interns.
- manager means a foreigner who is employed in a leadership position
- specialist means a foreigner who has specialized knowledge vital for the particular field and holds necessary qualification to prove this
- intern means an expat with a university degree who has been transferred to Czechia in order to further their career or get training
Who cannot come here on an ICT card
An ICT card is a residence permit for third-country citizens. In other words, it is not meant for EU citizens, citizens of the European Economic Area, and citizens of Switzerland and their family members.
It is also not meant for employees who do not work in the aforementioned positions (manager, specialist or employed intern). Nevertheless, if your company still wishes to send you to Czechia even though you do not work in any of these positions, it is still possible! You will just need to apply for an employee card instead of an ICT card.
How to get an ICT card
The transfer letter needs to contain a number of things, including:
- confirmation from your corporation about the transfer to one of the aforementioned positions
- list of working conditions (hours, salary, etc.)
- confirmation that you will not be transferred outside of the EU during your stay here
- if you’re an intern – description of your program and the length of your stay
(You will need other items for your letter as well – you can find the full list at the MOI website.)
You will also need to provide:
- confirmation that you’ve been employed by the corporation for at least 6 months
- confirmation of the connection between the two offices
- qualification confirmation
- health insurance confirmation
- your criminal record and confirmation of non-infectious status – upon request
What is good to know:
If you or your company are participating in the government programmes of economic migration, you probably won’t have to apply for your ICT card in your country. Instead, someone else (for example us) can do it for you in Czechia, which is an advantage.
Expats participating in these programmes will still need to provide:
- confirmation of accommodation
- transfer letter
- confirmation of having been employee for at least 6 months
- confirmation of a connection between the two offices
- qualification confirmation, etc.
What to do when your ICT contract expires
Sometimes expats who are here on an ICT card decide to end their contract while they are still in Czechia. Some really enjoy working for the Czech office and decide to extend their stay beyond the maximum of 3 years. Another scenario that can happen is that you might want to stay in Czechia but change employers.
Worry not, because both of these options are possible.
As soon as the contract with your controlling company abroad runs out, the Czech office is obligated to inform the Employment Office about the end of your transfer. The Employment Office will inform the Ministry of the Interior which will send you an official letter, stating that you have to leave the country. The letter will include a deadline of when you need to leave and you are formally obligated to leave the country before that date.
Switch to an employee card
But because you still have a valid permit at this point, you have time to apply for an employee card with your new employer (or the Czech office of your original company if you wish to stay with them). You apply for an employee card at the MOI in Czechia.
An employee card brings you more benefits than an ICT card. The main benefit is that you can stay in Czechia longer with an employee card. So, If you already know you’ll want to remain in Czechia for more than 3 years now, apply for your employee card as soon as possible, to make sure you can!
Would you like to switch to an employee card from your ICT card but not sure how to do it? Get in touch with us and we’ll take care of everything! You should also keep an eye on our blog and subscribe to our newsletter to make sure you don’t miss any vital information.