The Welcome Package project is an accelerated procedure for the provision of residence permits for internally transferred and localized employees and statutory representatives of foreign investors and for newly established technology companies with a domestic investor (i.e. start-ups). The purpose of the project is to achieve time savings within the migration process of employees and statutory representatives. The project is focused on statutory representatives, managers and key specialists.
Thanks to the Welcome Package project, the time required for processing visas and residence permits is shortened to roughly half the standard period. Employee/blue cards are issued for a maximum two-year period of residency and long-term visas are issued for stays in the Czech Republic longer than three months, though for a maximum of one year. Internally transferred employee cards are issued for a maximum period of three years. Employee/blue cards and long-term visas can be repeatedly extended in the Czech Republic. The current version of the project has been in effect since 1 November 2017. The full text of the Welcome Package for Investors project is available on the website of the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Czech Republic.
*Note: though colloquially we call it a startup visa, technically it is a residence permit. Make sure you have the terminology right when talking to state representatives so that they know, specifically, what you want.
WHO IS ELIGIBLE?
Start-up companies and their statutory representatives and/or employees, who fulfil the conditions. Statutory representatives, managers and specialists, founders and employees of start-ups from the ranks of:
- Nationals of third countries who are exempt from visa obligations for a period of 90 days within EU member countries.
- Nationals of the People’s Republic of China, the Republic of India and the Russian Federation who are sent to the Czech Republic for a period longer than 90 days.
The current list of countries is set forth below in enclosed document Annex 1.
The objective of the project is to achieve time savings in connection with the process of migration of newly established companies that correspond to the definition of a “start-up” company and will be contractually connected or bound by assets to investors or business incubators and accelerators in the Czech Republic.
The process is part of the Welcome Package for Investors project conducted by CzechInvest.
DEFINITION OF TERMS
A newly established company developing a product or service that is unique in terms of time and place, solves a given problem in a unique and innovative manner, has potential for rapid growth in terms of revenues and customers and is run primarily by its founders and in most cases needs investment for its further growth and introduction of its product to the market.
INCUBATION AND ACCELERATION PROGRAMME
A programme within which participating companies are provided with mentoring and consulting services, in most cases with a strictly defined timeframe. The aim of participation is to gain business experience and advance to the next phase of the company’s development.
An institutional (corporate) investor (legal entity) with a verifiable portfolio and with its registered office in the EU which has implemented at least one investment in the form of seed capital, venture capital or purchase of a share of assets in a start-up company in the EU.
STATUTORY REPRESENTATIVE OF A COMPANY
A person whose legal acts are considered to be the legal acts of the given legal entity on the basis of a founding legal act (memorandum of association or articles of association) or the law (e.g. an executive director).
A person working in a management position who primarily conducts the management of the company performs supervision of other employees including the authority to hire and dismiss employees.
A person who has specific knowledge and skills that are of fundamental importance for the successful launch of a new company’s operations or technology.
OVERVIEW OF POSSIBLE MEANS OF MIGRATION
A basic prerequisite for the participation of a foreigner in the Welcome Package project is the duration of the employment or business relationship (undertaken pursuant to Czech legal regulations) between the foreigner and the start-up during the entire period of such foreigner’s stay in the Czech Republic.
HOW TO APPLY?
Application for inclusion in the Welcome Package Project (Annex 2.) as well as all attachments that are required are sent to email@example.com.
A foreigner is entitled to submit a request only to the embassy of the Czech Republic in the state of which he / she is a citizen or, where appropriate, who issued the travel document of which he / she is the holder or in the state where long-term or permanent residence is permitted. The fulfillment of this condition is not required in the case of a foreign national who is a citizen of a state listed in the list of countries whose nationals are entitled to apply for long-term visas or to issue a long-term or permanent residence permit at any embassy of the Czech Republic (decree no. 429/2010 Coll.).
It takes 30 days to process an application, and after a positive response, you can receive the visa within 15 days.
CRITERIA FOR INCLUSION
IN THE WELCOME PACKAGE PROJECT
- Submission of the application and a contract on incubation in any of the incubators set forth in the list below and an affidavit from the given incubator pursuant. See documents below.
- Submission of the application and an investment agreement on entry of a technology investor (according to the list below) and an affidavit from the technology investor. See documents below.
LIST OF INCUBATORS AND TECHNOLOGY INVESTORS WITH WHICH IT IS POSSIBLE TO APPLY FOR INCLUSION IN THE WELCOME PACKAGE PROJECT
No. 1 Welcome package project – Start-ups (overview, conditions, process etc.)
No. 2 Application for inclusion of a start-up company and founder in the Welcome Package for Investors project
No. 3 Affidavit on the credibility
More information about issuing a visa itself is available at www.mvcr.cz/mvcren/article/a-visa-for-a-stay-of-over-90-days-long-term.