Czech Republic

Labor Compliance Guide

Labor Requirements

The Labor Code applies to all employment relationships, which are defined as legal relationships between employers and employees that arise in the performance of subordinated work and collective legal relationships that relate to the performance of subordinated work.

Hours & Pay Regulations

Normal Working Hours

The length of standard weekly working hours shall be 40 hours per week. As a rule, working hours are distributed over the five-day working week. The length of a shift may not exceed 12 hours. Labor Code, No. 262/2006 (as amended).

Overtime

Overtime work may be performed only exceptionally. Outside the frame of normal weekly working hours, an employer may order no more than 8 hours of overtime work within an individual week and 150 hours of overtime work within 1 calendar year.

For overtime work, an employee is entitled to his or her salary for work done (attained salary) and to a premium of at least 25% of his or her average earnings, unless the employer and the employee have agreed that instead of the premium for overtime work the employee will take compensatory time off (i.e., time off in lieu of premium pay) for the overtime hours worked.

If the employer does not give the employee the compensatory time off within 3 months after performing the overtime work, or within another agreed period, the employee is entitled to the premium mentioned above, in addition to his or her regular salary. Labor Code, No. 262/2006 (as amended).

Night Work

Night work means work performed during night time. Night time is the time between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. An employee doing night work is entitled to the wages and a premium in the amount of at least 10% of the average earnings for his work at night. Labor Code, No. 262/2006 (as amended).

Breaks

Employees are entitled to a break of at least 30 minutes for lunch and rest after six hours of continuous work. A work break for meal and rest shall not be provided at the start and the end of working hours. Breaks for meal and rest breaks (i.e. work breaks) shall not be included into the working hours. Labor Code, No. 262/2006 (as amended).

Public Holidays

Employees working Saturdays/Sundays are entitled to their wages and a premium of at least 10% of average earnings for hours of work on Saturday and/or Sunday.

 

The Czech Republic currently has 12 statutory public holidays, which are not included in the minimum holiday entitlement, including:

  • 1 January: New Year’s Day (Restoration Day of the Independent Czech State);
  • Easter Monday (floating holiday);
  • 1 May: Labour Day;
  • 8 May: Liberation Day;
  • 5 July: Day of Slavonic Apostles Cyril and Methodius;
  • 6 July: Anniversary of the Martyrdom of Jan Hus;
  • 28 September: Day of Czech Statehood;
  • 28 October: Day of Founding the Independent Czechoslovak State;
  • 17 November: Day of the Struggle for Freedom and Democracy;
  • 24 December: Christmas Eve;
  • 25 December: 1st Christmas Day;
  • 26 December: 2nd Christmas Day.

Employees working on a public holiday are entitled to their wage and compensatory time off for the hours worked on a public holiday. The compensatory time off to be availed latest by the end of the third calendar month after the public holiday on which the employee worked, or within another agreed period. Upon availing compensatory time off, the employee is entitled to compensatory wage in the number of his average earnings.

 

Compensatory Off may be replaced by a premium payment, where, such premium payment shall be in the amount of the employee’s average earnings.  Act on National Holidays, No. 245/2000 (as amended); Labor Code, No. 262/2006 (as amended).

Annual Leave

Each employee is entitled to a minimum of 4 weeks’ holiday per the calendar year. Leave should be availed in the same year in which it is accrued. Where leave cannot be taken in the year in which it has been accrued, the leave can be availed latest by the end of the subsequent calendar year. Labor Code, No. 262/2006 (as amended).

If an employee has been working continuously for the same employer for at least 60 days in a calendar year, he is entitled to annual leave. Work is considered to be the day on which the employee worked most of his shift. Parts of shifts worked on different days do not add up.

Supplementary Leave 
An employee who works with the same employer for a whole calendar year underground during mining or tunneling and tunneling and employees who work particularly hard throughout the calendar year is entitled to a one-week leave. If the employee is working for only one part of the calendar year under the conditions set out in the sentence, one-twelfth of the supplementary leave is due to him for every 21 days worked. 

Supplementary leave due to the performance of particularly difficult work is subject to the employee’s compliance with the stipulated conditions, even if he/she is entitled to additional leave due to underground work during mining or tunneling and tunneling. Labor Code, No. 215/2006 (as amended).

Reduction of Leave

In principle, only an employee who has worked with the employer throughout the year has an entitlement to full leave. If he did not work, it is possible to cut the holiday. The conditions and extent of the reduction of leave for the period not worked are as follows:

    • The annual leave entitlement is reduced if the employee does not work for obstacles at work, which are not considered to be work performed for at least 100 days. For the first 100 working days thus missed, the employee is reduced by one-twelfth and one-twelfth in each of the other 21 working days thus missed.
    • For each unexcused shift (working day), the employer may (but does not have to) leave the employee for 1 to 3 days, unexcused missions of shorter parts of individual shifts can add up.
    • In the reduction of leave, the employee whose employment relationship to the same employer must have remained for a full calendar year, leave of at least 2 weeks.
    • An employee who has missed a job for serving a sentence of imprisonment for each of the 21 missed calendar days shall be reduced by one-twelfth. In the same way, leave for custody is reduced if a final conviction has been made the employee or if the employee was acquitted or if the prosecution was stopped only because it is not criminally responsible for the offense or has been granted a pardon or has been amnestied.
    • Holidays for days worked and additional leave may only be reduced for the reasons in regards to unexcused shifts.
    • Holidays for which the right has been granted in the relevant calendar year shall be reduced only for reasons arising this year.

Labor Code, No. 223/2006 (as amended)

 

Czech Republic Annual Leave Entitlement
An employee who has worked for him for a period of at least 60 days in a calendar year, under a continuous employment relationship with the same employer, is entitled to the annual leave or, where applicable, a proportionate part. The employee is entitled only to a proportionate part of the annual leave if the employment relationship does not last continuously for the whole calendar year.

Conditions for Entitlement
There are two conditions for entitlement to annual leave:

      • Continuous employment for the same employer throughout the calendar year, and;
      • Work performed by an employee at least 60 days in a calendar year.

Employee Worked at Least 60 Days in Calendar Year 
If the employment relationship does not last for the entire calendar year, the employee is entitled to a proportional part of the holiday if the condition of work is fulfilled for at least 60 days.

        • The proportion of leave in this case for each full calendar month of the same working period is one-twelfth of the annual leave.
        • The proportion of leave of one-twelfth is also attributable to the employee for the calendar month in which he/she changed his / her job, provided that the termination of employment with the current employer is directly linked to the employment of a new employer. This proportion of leave is provided by the new employer. 

Employee Worked Less Than 60 Days in Calendar Year  

If the employee does not meet the condition for entitlement to leave for a calendar year or its pro rata part (i.e. 60 days of work), the Labor Code regulates the provision of leave for days worked. The right to a pro rata part of annual leave applies only where the employment relationship for the same employer did not last continuously throughout the calendar year

          • The condition for entitlement to leave for days worked is in such a case 21 days. For every 21 days worked, the employee is entitled to one-twelfth of the annual leave.

If the employee in the calendar month did not last continuously from the first to the last day, the proportional part of the holiday for that specific month is excluded. This is otherwise the case when an employee has changed jobs during a calendar month. In this case, if the employment relationship with the new employer immediately follows the termination of the employment relationship with the previous employer, the employee will be entitled to a 1/12-year leave for the calendar month in which he has changed his job. 

            • It is irrelevant when a change in employment occurred during a calendar month, as a proportion of leave is always a new employer. However, the condition is that the employment relationship must immediately follow the termination of employment with the previous employer. Meaning that in order for this rule to apply, there must be no time between the transition from one working relationship to another. 

Rounding of Leave Proportions
If the proportion of leave is less than one day, it is rounded to half a day; this also applies to the calculation of twelfths of leave (Section 216 (5) of the Labor Code, as amended). However, it is not prescribed by law to specify how to use the rounding method, whether upward (from 0.25) or down (to 0.25). Rounds off in practice by taking or adding up to a quarter. Therefore, for example, when the entitlement of 8 weeks of leave (per the calendar year) per 1 month is 1/12 of the annual entitlement, this 1/12 is 3.33 days and rounds to 3.5 days of leave.

Minimum Wage

The current minimum wage is 73.20 koruna per hour or 12,200 koruna per month for a normal 40-hour workweek.

Under the Labor Code, employees are entitled to at least 10 percent more than their regular wages for working at night and on weekends. The rate is subject to collective bargaining and internal rules. Employees working in arduous environments are also entitled to a wage supplement of at least 10 percent (of the minimum wage set by decree), which may be raised (but not lowered) by government decree

Guaranteed wage:  In other enterprise sphere organizations, where there is no collective agreement, or the collective agreement does not contain provisions on wage conditions, the “guaranteed wage” also applies alongside the minimum wage. The guaranteed wage introduced by the new Act No. 262/2006 Coll., Labour Code, applies solely to employment relations. If the pay is lower than the guaranteed wage, the employer is obliged to provide the employee with an extra amount equalling the difference between the pay attained in the calendar month and the appropriate lowest guaranteed wage. For the 1stcategory of work the lowest guaranteed wage is the same as the minimum wage.

In the non-enterprise sphere (public services and administration) a system of wage tariffs exists alongside the minimum wage and the lowest guaranteed wage. The lowest guaranteed wage levels are defined in the said Government Resolution No. 567/2006 Coll. for 8 categories of work. For the 1st category of work the lowest guaranteed wage is the same as the minimum wage. Section 112 of the Czech Republic Labor Code.

Special Leave

Parental Leave

Parental leave must be granted to employees on request. Parental leave can be taken at any time from the end of maternity leave (for mothers) or the date of birth (for fathers). It can last at a maximum until the child reaches three years of age. Labor Code, No. 262/2006 (as amended).

Maternity Leave

Female employees are entitled to 28 weeks’ maternity leave (37 weeks for multiple births). A female employee shall go on her maternity leave, as a rule, at the beginning of the sixth week before the expected childbirth (confinement), but no earlier than the beginning of the eighth week before the expected confinement. If a female employee has taken less than six weeks of maternity leave before the childbirth because the child was born earlier than the date determined by her doctor, she is entitled to her maternity leave as of the day when she started to take it until the expiry of the period as stated. If a female employee has had less than six weeks of maternity leave before her confinement for some other reason, she shall be entitled to 22 weeks of maternity leave as of the childbirth, or to 31 weeks if she gives birth to two or more children at the same time. If a child is stillborn, the female employee is entitled to maternity leave of 14 weeks. Labor Code, No. 262/2006 (as amended). Labor Code, No. 262/2006 (as amended).

Paternity Leave

Czech law does not contain any specific right to paternity leave. Fathers are entitled to take parental leave from the date of birth of the child. In some cases, they are entitled to receive maternity benefits, if they care for the child and those benefits are not paid to the mother. Fathers are also entitled to an optional leave of 10 consecutive or non-consecutive working days, at the same time that the mother is taking her initial parental leave. Labor Code, No. 262/2006 (as amended).

Child Care Leave

An employee can be absent from work for caring for a child younger than ten years of age and for providing care to a sick family member. Further, if an employee caring for a child under 15 years of age, or another dependent person, requests shorter working hours or some other reasonable adjustment to the weekly working hours, the employer must comply with the request, unless serious operational reasons prevent it from doing so. Labor Code, No. 262/2006 (as amended).

Maternity and Parental Leave for Foster Parents

The right to maternity or parental leave and related payments applies to female or male employees if these employees have taken a child into their care and are in the position of substituting parental care (including adoption, child custody, and guardianship). A female employee is granted maternity leave of 22 weeks from the day she takes a child into her care (31 weeks for two or more children), though this leave cannot extend beyond the child’s first birthday. Parental leave is the same as for birthparents.

Military Leave

Employees are entitled to leave during their military training. The leave is paid by the military. Because military service is not compulsory in the Czech Republic, this provision only applies to persons who volunteer for the military training, and its practical impact is marginal.

Election to Office Leave

When an employee is elected to public office, the employer is required to permit the employee to assume public office and grant him or her unpaid leave not exceeding 20 days per year.

Personal Leave

Governmental Decree No. 590/2006 Coll. sets out a list of events for which an employee must be granted time off. These include medical examinations, weddings and the birth of a child, as well as deaths and funerals within the immediate family. In addition, employers must grant their employees leave for the performance of work at a public office and other duties of public interest if employees cannot perform these activities outside working hours.

Sick Leave

If an employee becomes incapable of work due to sickness or injury, the employer must pay sickness benefits from the fourth to the 14th day of work incapacity (employees are not entitled to benefits for the first three days). The sickness benefit is equal to 60 percent of the employee’s average wage. During the first 14 days of an employee’s inability to work, employers are permitted to check that the worker is following a physician’s instructions. If employees violate the prescribed regimen, employers can reduce sick benefits or, in the case of a gross breach, refuse to pay them at all. The government pays sick benefits from the 15th day of work incapacity.

Last updated on: April 15th, 2019