How To Be Self-Employed In The Czech Republic?

The answer is: get a trade licence! This will allow you to work legally in the Czech Republic as an independent contractor, a freelancer if you like.

What is a trade licence?

A trade licence also called business licence or živnostenský list in Czech language, is an official document that allows its holder to work in the Czech Republic on a self-employed basis i.e. as an independent contractor/freelance worker without a working contract. It is popular with many different professions including IT specialists, enterpreneurs, teachers, hairdessers and many others.

Who needs to apply for a trade licence?

EU citizens (including Czech citizens) and non-EU citizens who wish to become self-employed firstly need to apply for a trade licence. For non-EU citizens who wish to work independently in the Czech Republic, a trade licence also legitimizes the purpose of their stay in the Czech Republic and is therefore a necessary document when filing your long-term visa or residence permit application.

Am I eligible to apply for a trade licence?

You must be 18 years or older in order to be legally able to enter into a contract. You need to prove that you don’t have a criminal record of a serious nature. Most trades are the so-called free trades (volné živnosti) where you do not need to prove any specific qualifications. However, in some cases you need to prove your vocational education and/or work experience in the field where you wish to work – this applies, in particular, for craftsmen.


 How do I apply for a trade licence?

A trade licence application form is filed at any of the Trade Licence Offices. You need to select trades that are relevant for focus of your work and provide your passport and supporting documents such as confirmation of a business seat and a criminal record check. Registration fee is 1000 CZK. A trade licence is usually issued within 15 days. However, the authority can use their right to process the application within 30 days.

What to do after the Trade licence is issued?

When you receive your trade licence, you are obliged to register at the Social Security Office and at your local Tax Office. EU citizens are also obliged to register at the National Insurance company called VZP. Non EU citizens don’t need to register at VZP, but must have valid health insurance for foreigners.

Still not sure?

We can offer advice on trade licence, registrations, long term visas for the purpose of business and much more. If you would like to discuss any related issues, please do not hesitate to contact Expat Care, relocation and immigration agency.

Expat Care CZ contacts

Written by Arseni Nesterov,

Co-founder, Senior immigration specialist at Expat Care CZ, s.r.o.

More About Arseni>>

You can get in touch with Arseni and Expat Care CZ also on social networks:
Facebook: Expat Care Relocation Agency Prague Czech Republic
LinkedIn: Expat Care CZ


Recommended Reading:

salary levels-czech-republic

Salary Levels in the Czech Republic by Regions and Sectors


Prague, Brno and Bratislava Compared – A Simple Guide for Your Choice!


Professional Tips from an Expats Career Coach To Find A Job You Deserve, Part 2

Content Marketing / Social Media Intern – Erasmus+

For up to date job openings for foreigners in the Czech Republic, go to our homepage:


Share the post with your friends. Do you have questions for Arseni or for Jobspin? Contact us! 

Use the Contact Form below.

Fields marked with an * are required

Business & Job Market