Pending changes that affect non-EU foreigners




See the following article: a recently announced regulation of the Labor Ministry (effective July 2012) and the proposed changes to the Immigration Law: http://www.parlamentnilisty.cz/zpravy/Uder-na-cizince-Drabek-je-zene-z-delnickych-profesi-Okamura-jeste-pritvrdi-222464 Seems to me, this affects even the current Permanent Residents and boils down to: 1. New labor/immigration rule already issued (effective July 1, 2012): a. non-EU foreigners with less than high-school education will suffer their work permits not be renewed b. already issued work permits will be renewed every 6 months c. requirement to certify foreign education by the government (diploma nostrification) 2. Possible new changes to the Immigration Law proposed by Gazdik and Okamura: a. The yet to be proposed amendment will be reviewed by the Parliament in the second half of 2012 b. Currently, a draft is being reviewed by Min. of Labor c. The main "concern" is that foreigners work (sometimes for cash) for 5 years, get permanent residency and then collect social benefits while not contributing to the society d. The law should protect “national heritage” and emulate laws of Kuwait and UAE (:D!!!) - only allowed to be in the country while you work e. The country would benefit from granting only long term visas renewable annually and re-examined after work assignment termination, and only if taxes are paid f. Foreigners´ income should be at least 2/3 of national average income g. Children/family members of working foreigners will not be automatically entitled to permanent residency or citizenship h. If unemployment exceeds a certain percentage - long term visas will not be extended (exception to scarce/specialized professions :confused:) i. No automatic permanent residency after 5 years - exception only basis for owners of prosperous companies; fee of at least 1 million koruna (:eek:); Czech language exam j. No automatic permanent residency for foreigners marrying Czechs - only after 10 years of marriage and on exception only basis (:eek:) k. Citizenship only to exceptional people - Nobel Prize winners, scientists, artists, Olympic gold winners (:D) l. Current Permanent Residents must re-demonstrate income sufficiency (retroactive law? :eek:) Summary: · · Since the proposed CRAZY changes of Gazdik/Okamura violate the EU law, the threat is not clear but, if accepted as submitted: o Permanent residency - contrary to EU law, this would de facto and de jure eliminate permanent residency; this is a clear conflict with the EU o After paying Czech social payments and income taxes for 5 years, Permanent residency for 1 million koruna per person is a sick joke and unprecedented extortion! :eek::eek::eek: o IF current permanent residents have to re-demonstrate income sufficiency and IF the Gazdik/Okamura proposal becomes law, there will be a mass exodus of nearly 5% of the population out of CZ unless the EU takes CZ to court; massive disruption to the economy, plummeting property prices

04:22:56 11.02.2012 Akita Inu

So good you post it twice

08:02:24 11.02.2012 VLM

Why would that be contrary to EU Laws? As far as I know, EU Regulations only concern about EU nationals moving to another EU country, but any country is free to have their own rules to give permits to non-EU nationals.

12:25:37 11.02.2012 moroni

First of all, thanks to Akita for this heads up! One thing I would like the draw the attention of those who plan to change their jobs to is: I have learnt yesterday to my surprise (learning: one should check updates to legislation concerning foreigners more frequently) that this diploma nostrification is ALREADY in effect which means in short that the processing time for a NEW workl permit is no more 1 month due to the fact that: Now, a legalized copy of your university degree is no more sufficient. You should first get a transcript of your higher education (with all the credits you earned during your university time with grades) also legalized and translated to Czech along with the diploma itself. Then you hand in these documents to one of the assigned (based on your education field) Universities in CR for nostrification (which means your diploma from your home country is GOOD ENOUGH in accordance with Czech System). The bad news here is, this takes officially 1 month, while it may (did in certain cases) go upto 3 or even 6 months and Labour Office will not give you a new Work Permit without this document. The worse news is that there is NO standard approach to the GRACE PERIOD (the gap between your current and new WP) concept, different LO's apply different rules. I was told that some LO's outside of prague are OK with as long as 2 months, while Prague ones practically say there is practically NO grace period which means if by the time your new WP is granted, your former WP is already cancelled, your visa (or Biometric Residence card) is cancelled automatically, which in practice will mean that You will have to leave CR within about 15 days (10 days notification + a couple of days during which you should leave the country as per the EXIT visa the MOI will give you) and apply for the Visa in a CR embassy in your home country. I have heard from different sources that there is an UNOFFICIAL gideline given to LO's and MOI that these rules should be applied with NO flexibility so that number of immigrants NATURALLY drops. I myself will most probably will not make it within this time frame, so already started packing things. I wanted to warn the others who plan a change, to act minimum 4-5 months before their WP's expire to get a new one. Good Luck

12:50:53 11.02.2012 Eric73

Quote: moroniWhy would that be contrary to EU Laws? As far as I know, EU Regulations only concern about EU nationals moving to another EU country, but any country is free to have their own rules to give permits to non-EU nationals.

take a look at the following eu directive and then say that certain parts of the proposal are not against eu law.... specifically this bit: EU countries must recognise long-term resident status after five years of continuous legal residence and i believe if you read that reg in more detail there is something that says iperm residency cannot be rescinded unless there is a a threat to public policy or public safety .... not to mention that other parts of it discriminate agaisnt family members of eu (czech) citizens when it comes to what they want to do with marriage visas... i think there is no way that what gadzik and okamura are proposing has any chance of passing although there is some truth in the fact that there is a lot of criminality, this sort of law is ridicuouls, as criminals will always find a way - they should be chasing this criminality more rather than accusing innocent foreigners ....

13:09:44 11.02.2012 meluzina

may have to rush out and get my citizenship then , wot?

19:02:53 11.02.2012 praguepivo

Quote: meluzinai think there is no way that what gadzik and okamura are proposing has any chance of passing

Maybe not, but in a country as racist as this one, any assault on foreigners will help his popularity in his run for President. Looks like there will be Americans, Swiss and Japanese competing in the Czech Presidential Elections. Zemanek might be the only hope.

19:36:30 11.02.2012 JKG

Serious question: what has Okamura done to warrant being considered a candidate for President? I can't figure that one out at all. As for the ideas themselves, there are so many horrible ones that it's hard to focus, but here are two that stood out: Anyone who cites UAE and Kuwaiti treatment of foreigners favorably needs to reconsider that. Oh, and those countries have that little advantage in attracting foreign workers called oil and oil money. I'd be interested in what these guys think is so amazing about this country that draconian laws are needed to keep people out. Second, the idea of judging spouses of Czech citizens by how much they earn is just unbelievable. I mean, come on. I don't imagine there's a even a chance much if any of this becomes law, but it's not a strong addition to public discourse here.

20:15:21 11.02.2012 brodeur

Quote: brodeurSerious question: what has Okamura done to warrant being considered a candidate for President? I can't figure that one out at all.

All those moderate middle class xenophobic Czechs who deny their racism even to themselves, and who would never vote for far-right candidate, feel that they finally have a xenophobic candidate they can vote for. And they can say "hey, I am not racist, I voted for the Jap, I just don't like gypsies" (which is Okamura's favorite topic).

09:34:18 12.02.2012 Ślunzok

Quote: brodeurSerious question: what has Okamura done to warrant being considered a candidate for President? I can't figure that one out at all. As for the ideas themselves, there are so many horrible ones that it's hard to focus, but here are two that stood out: Anyone who cites UAE and Kuwaiti treatment of foreigners favorably needs to reconsider that. Oh, and those countries have that little advantage in attracting foreign workers called oil and oil money. I'd be interested in what these guys think is so amazing about this country that draconian laws are needed to keep people out. Second, the idea of judging spouses of Czech citizens by how much they earn is just unbelievable. I mean, come on. I don't imagine there's a even a chance much if any of this becomes law, but it's not a strong addition to public discourse here.

Completely agree. When I told my Czech girlfriend/might-as-well-be wife about this last night, she wasn't able to sleep. She was still upset about it this morning. Scary stuff. All it takes is a big recession to put this guy in power. What a conflicted story he has too! Couldn't

10:03:45 12.02.2012 Aquarius

Brodeur. To answer a serious question with a serious question. In your opinion who has actually considered Okamura a candidate for president. Apart from a fanciful press that is.

12:01:46 12.02.2012 VLM

Quote: ŚlunzokAll those moderate middle class xenophobic Czechs who deny their racism even to themselves, and who would never vote for far-right candidate, feel that they finally have a xenophobic candidate they can vote for. And they can say "hey, I am not racist, I voted for the Jap, I just don't like gypsies" (which is Okamura's favorite topic).

I completely agree with your analysis. I also noticed that people with immigrant background are the greatest proponents of hash immigration laws across Europe. The UK's 2005 conservative leader who campaigned so bitterly on immigration issue was the son of an illegal immigrant to the UK but few decades later, he wish all immigrants will just disappear from the same country his father came illegally to. But unlike the UK where of course the clown was embarrassed on UK's Channel 4 when confronted with the fact that his father came to UK illegally and his party was rejected at the polls. The story will be different here. Am waiting excitedly for the fall out that will follow the passage of this law.

12:25:06 12.02.2012 Curus10

I have never met a Czech who actually had anything good to say about Gypsies. Even among the legions of righteous expats who may be liberal about everything else, few have actually championed their cause especially after having lived here for a few years.

12:44:10 12.02.2012 Kreatokefalo

Quote: VLMBrodeur. To answer a serious question with a serious question. In your opinion who has actually considered Okamura a candidate for president. Apart from a fanciful press that is.

I think it's fair to say that he resonates with a good number of Czechs outside of the media. I've seen polls with him at over 10%, which of course doesn't mean he's a serious candidate, but it does suggest that he'll remain among the names mentioned. It was an honest question - I just wondered if I was missing something in his background that makes him an attractive candidate (I suppose that not being a career politician is probably one major advantage itself in this country). Also, whether it's a "fanciful press" that is pushing him as a candidate or not, he is consistently given a platform from which to make his views known (including a blog on idnes.cz), which is important in its own right if he does run.

12:48:25 12.02.2012 brodeur

Point taken. Though he did say he was not interested. Why do Czechs like him? I imagine people have only seen the TV personality. My guess is that people trust him because as you say he is not a career politician. He talks in a way Joe average understands, like a normal person not a politician. None of which make him a rational choice but most of all they dislike the alternatives.

16:00:24 12.02.2012 VLM

Quote: VLMWhy do Czechs like him?

is he more popular in the "big city" ? down where i am, everyone thinks he's a stuck up booby who just wants to show off ....

16:23:46 12.02.2012 meluzina

Regarding Okamura, his "popularity" and his chances of becoming either a senator or the President. To me, it is clear he is an "invented" candidate i.e., he is being pushed and supported by the nationalist right wing sector of the governing coalition. Let's consider the background. Firstly, the right wing nationalists across the whole EU see the ongoing European crisis as their chance to come to power and they are succeeding - Austria, Denmark, the UK, France, Belgium, Hungary. Secondly, under Klaus/Necas, the country has become an outcast in the EU, almost like "Oban's Hungary with a Human Face". Thirdly, the ruling Czech coalition is doing very badly in the polls. So, you push somebody like Okamura to advance your agenda but position yourself in contrast to the obviously chauvinistic Okamura as an acceptable alternative. We got a situation where the banks want Fischer as the President - to the nationalist right wing, he is the pro-EU "globalism" candidate and he has money to back him up. The right wing does not have either the banks or the industry to back them up. Their only chance is to play the card of populist, nationalist, anti-EU rhetoric but, to increase their chances, they need a contrast to play against. Okamura, with no background in governance, presents a good choice - his non-Czech roots are his shield against accusations of racism and his lack of experience to lead the country is shown as his advantage because he is "not a career politician". So, he is a puppet, a creature of the ideologues of that sector of Czech politics that Schwarzenberg recently called the National Socialist. As such, he has no chance of becoming the President. But they could give him his Senate seat as the reward. And that is where the danger to foreigners lies. As the President, he cannot push laws but, as a Senator, he can. To judge his chances of becoming one we only need to see if the proposed changes to the Immigration Law make it out of the Interior Ministry to the Parliament or they never pass the Ministry. Given the economic ramifications of the changes and the demographics in the country, one would expect for rationality to prevail and the proposal to be shelved. However, after the recent events related to the EU fiscal pact, I have given up on Czech rationality and practicality. But I would love to be proven wrong. What will save foreigners in the Czech Republic? Either for Okamura to self-destruct, politically speaking, or for the Fischer/Social Democrats camp to start using "the foreigners" card against the right wing. So far, neither is happening.

18:07:09 12.02.2012 Akita Inu

Quote: meluzinais he more popular in the "big city" ? down where i am, everyone thinks he's a stuck up booby who just wants to show off ....

That was my business partner's take on him when I asked him what he thought. He said he wouldn't take him too seriously.

20:45:46 12.02.2012 Aquarius

I think the only people who take Okamura seriously is the same crowd that voted for Vaclav "Fischer Travel" Fischer (elected to Senat) or Radek "tough investigative journalist" John (the pathetic Veci verejne in the current goverment) - Okamura's competitors are Jiri Paroubek's new National Socialist or Milan "new Bata" Babis's "anit-corruption" platform now. Platforms that probably cannot win elections, but cna get enough votes to get blackmailing or blocking powers.... You know those who wait for the political Messiah... The hearsay is that Okamura is quite power thirsty, though, probably not just a puppet. Okamura can be also seen as a Czech incarnation of Chuck Norris - a verbal one, who has a definitive, straigthforward and unbeatable, final opinion to anything. Somebody who looks like a wise man to the unwise mob.

21:31:00 12.02.2012 jezovec

Quote: meluzinatake a look at the following eu directive and then say that certain parts of the proposal are not against eu law.... specifically this bit: EU countries must recognise long-term resident status after five years of continuous legal residence and i believe if you read that reg in more detail there is something that says iperm residency cannot be rescinded unless there is a a threat to public policy or public safety .... not to mention that other parts of it discriminate agaisnt family members of eu (czech) citizens when it comes to what they want to do with marriage visas... i think there is no way that what gadzik and okamura are proposing has any chance of passing although there is some truth in the fact that there is a lot of criminality, this sort of law is ridicuouls, as criminals will always find a way - they should be chasing this criminality more rather than accusing innocent foreigners ....

I agree that is a discriminatory and maybe racist law, don't take me wrong, I am also a non-EU national living here. But I think you're confused since the EU Directives are only that, Directives, they are not "laws", and each country transpose them into their national laws with their own changes. Even UK, Ireland and Denmark chose not to participate in the adoption this Directive 2003/109/EC. So, this Directive says that after 5 years you MAY get the status of Long-Term Resident in the EU, but again, each country can have their own legislation about the requirements to grant the Permanent Residence in the country. Their are both two different kinds of permits, if you have the PR, you don't automatically have the Long-Term, but you have to ask for it, and the funny part is that almost no one knows you can ask for it, even in the FP or in the MOI Quote from the MOI webpage

If the legal status of a long-term resident in the European Community in the Czech Republic is not recognised at the same time as the permanent residence permit is, the MOI can recognise it at a later stage, if you request it and meet the conditions.

.

08:03:53 18.02.2012 moroni

Quote: moroniI agree that is a discriminatory and maybe racist law, don't take me wrong, I am also a non-EU national living here. But I think you're confused since the EU Directives are only that, Directives, they are not "laws", and each country transpose them into their national laws with their own changes. Even UK, Ireland and Denmark chose not to participate in the adoption this Directive 2003/109/EC. So, this Directive says that after 5 years you MAY get the status of Long-Term Resident in the EU, but again, each country can have their own legislation about the requirements to grant the Permanent Residence in the country. Their are both two different kinds of permits, if you have the PR, you don't automatically have the Long-Term, but you have to ask for it, and the funny part is that almost no one knows you can ask for it, even in the FP or in the MOI Quote from the MOI webpage .

you are wrong with the directives they do contain rules that must be transposed into national law - "A directive is a legislative act of the European Union, which requires member states to achieve a particular result without dictating the means of achieving that result" or another definition: What Is The Definition Of An Eu Directive? EU directives are a type of legislation issued by the European Union which is binding on Member States. EU directives lay down certain end results that must be achieved in every Member State granted, there is more leeway with regard to how the countries transpose the directive sinto national law, but certain results must be achieved with regard to this particular one (Council Directive 2003/109/EC of 25 November 2003 concerning the status of third-country nationals who are long-term residents - http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=CELEX:32003L0109:en:HTML) it specifically states in article 4: "1. Member States shall grant long-term resident status to third-country nationals who have resided legally and continuously within its territory for five years immediately prior to the submission of the relevant application." the article does go on to define how "periods of absence" are to be calculated Article 5 does say that the third-country national must prove sufficient earnings - however that would mean according to the subsitence levels set in whichever member state they are talking aboiut Article 6 says: 1. Member States may refuse to grant long-term resident status on grounds of public policy or public security. When taking the relevant decision, the Member State shall consider the severity or type of offence against public policy or public security, or the danger that emanates from the person concerned, while also having proper regard to the duration of residence and to the existence of links with the country of residence. 2. The refusal referred to in paragraph 1 shall not be founded on economic considerations. which would imply that what okamura is dreaming about (i.e. granting perm. res. only to peoplpe who make huge amounts of money) is in conflict with paragraph 2 - i.e. the decision cannot be basedf on economic considerations - and is truly only a pipe dream ... then article 13 says: "Member States may issue residence permits of permanent or unlimited validity on terms that are more favourable than those laid down by this Directive. " it does not allow the member states to make less favourable conditions though .... yes the uk, ireland and denmark opted out of this particular directive - however the newer member states do not have as many opportunities to opt out - and i don't believe an "opt out" can be obtained retroactively ...

09:01:04 18.02.2012 meluzina

Quote: moroniQuote from the MOI webpage Quote: If the legal status of a long-term resident in the European Community in the Czech Republic is not recognised at the same time as the permanent residence permit is, the MOI can recognise it at a later stage, if you request it and meet the conditions. .

hmm that is the english version of the page ... the czech link http://www.mvcr.cz/clanek/obcane-tretich-zemi-trvaly-pobyt.aspx?q=Y2hudW09Mw%3d%3d says "Pokud vám nebylo právní postavení dlouhodobě pobývajícího rezidenta v Evropském společenství na území přiznáno současně s vydáním povolení k trvalému pobytu, přizná vám MV ČR toto právní postavení, pokud o to požádáte a splňujete výše uvedené podmínky." which to me reads that they WILL grant it if you meet the conditions - now i am not sure how much they can change those conditions or if they can indeed make the financial requirements ridiculously high - of course anything is possible, but i think that would make it in conflict with hose provisions of the EU directive on this free movement for third-country nationals that need to be transposed ibnto national law (spoecifically the bit that says the refula to grant the status cannot be based solely on economic conditions)....

09:09:30 18.02.2012 meluzina

We are saying the same :) After 5 years of residence you can get the Long-Term Residence in the EU, which is different of the Country Permanent Residence. The country is free to ask the requirements they want to grant the Permanent Residence, but they must give you the Long-Term Residence after 5 years, it's not the same permit and you must ask for the LT! The key in the quote wasn't "can" or "will", but "if you request it".

09:17:33 18.02.2012 moroni

Quote: moroniWe are saying the same :) After 5 years of residence you can get the Long-Term Residence in the EU, which is different of the Country Permanent Residence. The country is free to ask the requirements they want to grant the Permanent Residence, but they must give you the Long-Term Residence after 5 years, it's not the same permit and you must ask for the LT! The key in the quote wasn't "can" or "will", but "if you request it".

sorry, i was looking at your post, where you capitalised "may" in relation to something else - but that eu directive does say the countries are required to - not sure how much leeway it gives w/ regard to defining the conditions though - i don't think there is as much as herr okamura thinks there may be ... hmmm just ran across this related case (concerning the netherlands and their imposition of high fees for third-country residents) - http://www.migrationnewssheet.eu/netherlands-to-face-european-court-for-charging-third-country-nationals-excessive-fees-for-residence-permits if that is indeed in case law now, then herr okamura's one million crown fee is also just a pipedream

09:41:11 18.02.2012 meluzina

Sure, 70% of Non Eu country citizens will leave CZ in next 3 years

20:00:15 09.03.2012 lenovo77

no frigging wayyyy????? there is NO way in hell (in the EU) the czech state would get away with such racist manifesto/ laws! I dont think czech people are racist (most arent Id hope) so they would never support this. also the EU is watching!!! and WILL protect human rights if and when they are being abused! Its CRIMINALS that need to be locked up/ deported etc. immigrants are just people like everybody else, WAKE UP , its the 21st century, migration in western countries is completely natural these days! jeez... and i cant believe okamura would be the one behind it (i thought he was the good guy :( (dont know who the other nazi - i mean, person is.

19:07:06 14.03.2012 BenTennison16

Quote: BenTennison16I dont think czech people are racist (most arent Id hope)

I am not sure if you are trying to make a joke, or are just naive? :D

20:48:56 14.03.2012 JKG

Of course that Czechs are not xenofobs nor racists you stinking foreigner!

20:56:54 14.03.2012 jezovec

depends on a) their level of education b) age c) ethnic background source: my experience

21:31:58 14.03.2012 BenTennison16