Working Environment and employment

An important area of human resources management is acquisition and selection of employees, their motivation to desired employment performance, education and development of employees. Entrepreneurs in the area of human resources must proceed in compliance with a number of legal regulations.

Legal requirements

sem obrazekAll legal regulations are subject to the Labour Code, Act on Employment, Act on Collective Bargaining and the relevant implementation procedures to the above acts.

The selection of individuals from job seekers with regard to qualifications, necessary requirements or special skills (capabilities) is within the employer's competence unless another procedure ensues from other statutory provisions. This shall apply without prejudice to prerequisites laid down in other statutory provisions for an individual as an employee.

Recruitment of employees

With regards to the conclusion of an employment contract, an employer must observe some duties defined by the Labour Code, or those stipulated in special legal regulations.

Special conditions apply to specific groups of employees that the customer must respect. These groups are children, youth, women, and handicapped persons.

The basic employment and legal relationships include employment contract and legal relationships based on contract for work completed outside of employment.

Social and health insurance

The social insurance system includes basic compulsory pension insurance and sickness insurance. Apart from social security premiums, contributions to the state employment policy are also collected within the scope of the system. The following document contains basic information on the system of social insurance including key legislative changes since 2006, an evaluation of the basic indicators of social insurance and medium-term and long-term projections.

All individuals have to have health insurance – it is mandatory and no qualifying individual can be denied coverage by a public health insurance company. In the case of an employment relationship, the employer pays for the health insurance at the rate of 13.5% of the calculated base income (of which one third is paid by the employee and two thirds by the employer). There are 7 health insurance funds in the Czech Republic, each person insured has to be registered with one of them. Each insured person has the right of to choose free the health insurance fund. A citizen of another EU member state who is insured in the Czech Republic is entitled to obtain the full scope of health care covered from the public health insurance. Health insurance in the Czech Republic covers health care not cash benefits in case of a sickness or injury. The sickness insurance for covering the cash benefits is administered by the Czech Administration of Social Security (Česká správa sociálního zabezpečení), the institution which is also in charge of the pension insurance.

The list of the health insurance funds and their websites is as follows:

Všeobecná zdravotní pojišťovna ČR
www.vzp.cz                

Zdravotní pojišťovna Ministerstva vnitra ČR
www.zpmvcr.cz

Oborová zdravotní pojišťovna
www.ozp.cz

Česká průmyslová zdravotní pojišťovna
www.cpzp.cz

Vojenská zdravotní pojišťovna ČR
www.vozp.cz

Revírní bratrská pokladna, zdravotní pojišťovna
www.rbp-zp.cz

Zaměstnanecká pojišťovna Škoda
www.zpskoda.cz

Remuneration

The Labour Code defines common remuneration principles for all groups of employees, such as protection against unreasonably low wages (salaries), and against discrimination in remuneration.

 Working hours

The weekly working time of an employee is:

  • working single-shift is a maximum of 40 hours a week.
  • working two-shifts is a maximum of 38.75 hours a week.
  • working three-shifts or in a continuous service is a maximum of 37.5 hours a week.

An employee under the age of 18 must not work more than 8 hours a day. His weekly working time may not exceed 40 hours in total.

Shorter weekly working time without a concurrent wage reduction may be stipulated in collective agreements or internal regulations.

The maximum length of the shift is 12 hours.

Above the working time scheduled in the shifts (in the written weekly working time schedule) can the employer order overtime.

Maximum ordered overtime by the employer cannot exceed 150 hours in calendar year and 8 hours in a week (in case it is agreed in the contract between the employer and the employee the overtime cannot exceed 8 hours in average in a week in the period which cannot exceed 26 weeks or according to the collective agreement provision it can be prolonged up to 52 weeks.

The employer also has to provide his employees with a minimum length of a rest period. There are four types of a rest period in the Czech Republic:

  • lunch and rest break – at least 30 minutes after 6 hours of consecutive work, it can be divided into more pieces in case that at least one piece will last at least 15 minutes
  • continuous rest period between two shifts – general 11 consecutive hours between the shifts in the period of 24 hours, in special occasions it can be shortened up to 8 hours between the shifts in the period of 24 hours
  • continuous weekly rest period – general 35 consecutive hours a week, in special occasions it can be shortened up to 24 hours a week
  • safety break in accordance with specific legal regulations.

 Termination of employment

An employment contract may end above all based on a legal act toward its termination, made by one of the participants (employee or employer); an employment contract may be terminated based on an agreement on termination of employment, notice, immediate cancellation, or termination in the probation period. An employment contract agreed for a definite period of time ends unless it was terminated prior to the agreed upon time period in a different manner subject to the Labour Code, at the time of expiration of the agreed upon period.

The employer may give notice of termination to an employee only for the following reasons:

a)                  if the employer's undertaking, or its part, is closed down;
b)                 if the employer's undertaking, or its part, relocates;
c)                  if the employee becomes redundant owing to the decision of the employer or the employer's competent body to change the activities (tasks), plant and equipment, to reduce the number of employees for the purpose of increasing labour productivity (efficiency) or to introduce other organizational changes (restructuring);
d)                 if, according to a medical certificate issued by the occupational medical services provider or under a ruling of the competent administrative agency having reviewed the medical certificate, the employee is not allowed to perform his current work due to an industrial injury, an occupational disease or due to threat of an occupational disease, or if the employee's workplace has been subjected to a maximum permissible level of some harmful exposure under a ruling of the competent agency concerned with public health protection;
e)                 if, according to a medical certificate issued by the occupational medical services provider or under a ruling of the competent administrative agency having reviewed the medical certificate, the employee has lost, long-term, his capability to perform his current work due to his state of health;
f)                 if the employee does not meet the prerequisites prescribed by statutory provisions for performance of the agreed work (job) or if, through no fault on the employer's side, he does not meet the requirements for proper performance of such work; where the employee's failure to fulfil these requirements is reflected in his unsatisfactory work performance results and where the employer called upon him in writing in the last 12 months to rectify the failure to meet the said requirements, and the employee has not done so within a reasonable period of time, the employee may be given notice of termination due to this reason;
g)                  if there are reasons on the employee's side due to which the employer could immediately terminate the employment relationship, or if the employee has seriously breached some obligation arising from statutory provisions and relating to work performed by him; in case of ongoing but less serious breaches of some obligation that arises from statutory provisions and relates to the work performed by the employee, this employee may be given notice of termination by his employer provided that in the last six months  the employer notified the employee of this possibility in writing (with regard to breach of some obligation that relates to work performed by this employee);
h)          if the employee breaches another obligation pursuant to section 301a of the Labour Code in an especially gross manner.

 

Employment in the EU conditions

Citizens of the EU member states and their family members are not considered foreigners from the point of view of the Labour Code and, in compliance with the Labour Code they enjoy the same position as the citizens of the Czech Republic. Therefore, they do not need a work permit to work in the territory of the Czech Republic.

 

Employing foreigners

Legal and employment relations between a foreigner and an employer are governed above all by the Labour Code and related procedures, similarly to employees – Czech citizens. However, in this case, the legal and employment relationships between the employer and the employee may be modified differently, according to legal regulations on private international law. Conditions of employment are further identified by the Act on Employment, according to which foreigners may be employed in the territory of the Czech Republic if the future employer received an authorisation to acquire employees from abroad and the foreigners were issued individual employment permits (if such permits are needed) and a residence permit.

Human resources management also requires that the employer adheres to social and legal standards, such as the principle of non-discrimination, equality of the sexes, safety and health protection at work.

 

Resources

The following governmental and non-governmental institutions and web portals offer further information and useful services related to the area of social security and work conditions.

EURES, the European job portal, offers employers information and support on recruiting across the EU. As well as assisting jobseekers, it helps entrepreneurs find workers from across the EU. In border regions, EURES provides information on cross-border commuting and helps workers and employers with problems that may arise.

 

Personalised help and advice

The Enterprise Europe Network is an extensive network (with 600 host organisations and 4 000 full-time staff) providing information and advice to entrepreneurs through its local partners.

Legal texts