|Czech Citizenship Act|
|Parliament of Czech Republic|
|Enacted by||Parliament of the Czech Republic|
|Passed||June 26, 2013|
|Enacted||January 1, 2014|
|Signed by||President Miloš Zeman|
|Introduced by||Ministry of the Interior|
|First reading||December 4, 2012|
|Second reading||March 20, 2013|
|Third reading||March 27, 2013|
|Act No. 186/2013 Coll., on Acquiring and Losing Citizenship of the Czech Republic|
|Status: Current legislation|
The citizenship law of the Czech Republic is based on the principles of jus sanguinis or "right by blood". In other words, descent from a Czech parent is the primary method of acquiring Czech citizenship (together with naturalisation). Birth on Czech territory without a Czech parent is in itself insufficient for the conferral of Czech citizenship. Every Czech citizen is also a citizen of the European Union.
The law came into effect on 1 January 1993, the date of the dissolution of Czechoslovakia, and has been amended in 1993, 1995, 1996, 1999, 2002, 2003, and 2005. Since 1 January 2014, multiple citizenship under Czech law is allowed.
The principle of jus sanguinis is used to determine eligibility for citizenship, as is typical in Europe. In principle, any person born to a Czech citizen is a Czech citizen at birth. If both grandparents on someone's maternal lineage or paternal lineage, Czech nationality will be transmitted down to the family lineage up til grandchildren. Whether a person is born in the Czech Republic or elsewhere is irrelevant. Where only the father is Czech, and the parents are unmarried, proof of paternity is required - by the parents making a concerted declaration before the Registry Office or a court, submission of a DNA test, or a court determination relating to the paternity of the child.
Children born in the Czech Republic to non-Czech parents do not acquire Czech citizenship unless:
Children aged less than 15 years found on the territory of the Czech Republic (where identity of the parents cannot be established) are deemed to be Czech citizens.
Resident foreigners or stateless persons who have held a right of permanent residence for at least five years (reduced to three years for EU citizens) and have resided in the Czech Republic for most of that time can apply for Czech naturalisation if they can prove they are of good character and are proficient in the Czech language (current or former Slovak citizens are exempt from language requirements). Parents can apply for their children under 15 years of age, and naturalisation occurs at the discretion of the Interior Ministry.
The residence requirement can be waived if the person has a permanent residence permit and
If a person was a citizen of the Czech and Slovak Federative Republic as of 31 December 1992, he may declare citizenship of either the Czech Republic or Slovakia (gaining Slovak citizenship) assuming he does not have any other citizenship. The Slovak provision allowing for this grant expired in 1993, however the Czech equivalent remains in the citizenship law.
During the communist era (1948–89) hundreds of thousands of Czechoslovakian citizens had emigrated into other parts of the West. The regime punished emigration by removing Czechoslovak citizenship, along with property confiscation and in absentia prison sentences. Since the Velvet Revolution in 1989, many emigrants demanded their citizenship be restored. Between 1999 and 2004, a special measure allowed them to regain the citizenship, but a few people took advantage of the wording, which "granted" citizenship rather than "restored" it and so got dual citizenship. A few people from Volhynia and Romania also got citizenship.
The involuntary loss of citizenship is constitutionally prohibited. However, before the 2013 Citizenship Act (effective as of January 1, 2014) it was sometimes argued by emigrants and emigrant groups that the restrictions on dual citizenship were a form of involuntary deprivation of citizenship.
Czech citizenship can be renounced voluntarily if doing so wouldn't cause one to be stateless unless it is in connection with a marriage or by birth – the Czech Republic does not require children born with another nationality to renounce it upon reaching maturity.
The Czech Ministry of Interior can waive all citizenship requirements if the person cannot be released from the original citizenship, if the other state refuses to issue confirmation of the loss of citizenship, if the loss of foreign citizenship would result in persecution, if it is in the political interests of the Czech Republic, or if the applicant has resided on the territory of what is today the Czech Republic for at least twenty years.
Czech citizenship can be proved by
Czech Republic allows its citizens to hold foreign citizenship in addition to their Czech citizenship since 2014. The Czech government maintains a registry of those nationals who hold a concurrent nationality in addition to their Czech nationality.
Some countries, however, do not permit multiple citizenship e.g. adults who acquired Czech and Japanese citizenship by birth must declare, to the latter's Ministry of Justice, before turning 22, which citizenship they want to keep.
Because Czech Republic forms part of the European Union, Czech citizens are also citizens of the European Union under European Union law and thus enjoy rights of free movement and have the right to vote in elections for the European Parliament. When in a non-EU country where there is no Czech embassy, Czech citizens have the right to get consular protection from the embassy of any other EU country present in that country. Czech citizens can live and work in any country within the EU as a result of the right of free movement and residence granted in Article 21 of the EU Treaty.
Visa requirements for Czech citizens are administrative entry restrictions by the authorities of other states placed on citizens of Czech Republic. As of May 2018, Czech citizens had visa-free or visa on arrival access to 182 countries and territories, ranking the Czech passport 7th in terms of travel freedom (tied with Maltese and New Zealand passports) according to the Henley Passport Index.
In 2017, The Czech nationality is ranked fifteenth in Nationality Index (QNI). This index differs from the Visa Restrictions Index, which focuses on external factors including travel freedom. The QNI considers, in addition, to travel freedom on internal factors such as peace & stability, economic strength, and human development as well.