The information below is only a brief excerpt from the laws governing the registry agenda, changes of first names and surnames and the citizenship agenda. Due to the complexity and nuances of the specific case, a personal consultation in the given section is always necessary.
All foreign documents submitted to the registry must be translated by an official translator into Czech (with the exception of Slovak). In case of states with which no intergovernmental agreement has been concluded, all documents must be superlegalised at the Czech Republic Embassy in the relevant state, or these documents must be verified by an apostille clause of the state that issued the document.
Each marriage includes an initial visit by the engaged couple, writing a questionnaire for entering into marriage, checking all documents, marriage preparation, the ceremony, entry in the marriage register, preparation and subsequent handover (in person or by post) of the marriage certificate to the newlyweds.
The marriage ceremony can take place in a civil or church form. A church marriage can only be concluded before a church that is approved by the state. If the engaged couple wants to marry at the church, they must also come to the registry office in advance. A certificate will be issued to them on the basis of the submitted documents stating that they meet the requirements of the law for entering into marriage, according to the church where the marriage will take place. This certificate is valid for 6 months. If a church marriage is entered into, it is no longer possible to enter into a civil marriage and vice versa.
Required documents from the fiancé/fiancée-foreigner
Proof of citizenship – travel document
Proof of legal capacity to marry
In some cases, confirmation of marital status and residence
Certificate of eligibility for residence in the Czech Republic, issued by the Czech Republic Police, which must not be older than 7 working days as of the date of marriage
If you have been married before, then also a divorce or death certificate.
More information about marriage of foreigners can be found, for example, here:
Marriage to a fiancé/fiancée who does not have permanent residence in the Czech Republic – administrative fee is 2,000 CZK.
Marriage when neither of the engaged couple has a permanent residence in the Czech Republic – administrative fee is 3,000 CZK.
Marriages in Prague 3 take place in the ceremonial room at Žižkov Town Hall, Žižkov Tower and in the Atrium in Žižkov. In the period between May and September, and also in the area of the Garden of Paradise (Rajská zahrada park).
A registered partnership between persons of the same sex can be concluded before the relevant registry office in the region where at least one of the persons has a permanent residence. In the capital city of Prague, it is the Prague 1 District Office.
A death certificate is issued by the registry in the district of which the person died, not where the person had their residential address. A lump-sum funeral allowance will belong to the person who arranged the funeral, to the dependent child or to the person who was the parent of the dependent child. All this provided that the deceased had a permanent residence in the Czech Republic on the day of death.
First name and surname changes
A change of surname shall be permitted, in particular, if the surname is derogatory or ridiculous or if there is a serious reason for it. In the case of divorce, the change of surname is made free of charge within 6 months from the entry into force of the divorce in the form of a notification to the registry office where the marriage was concluded.
After this period, i.e., after 6 months from the entry into force of the divorce, the change of surname is resolved in the form of a person’s application at the registry office where the applicant has permanent residence. The administrative fee is 100 CZK.
A classic application for a first name or surname change of a foreigner who has a permanent residence permit in the Czech Republic is submitted at the applicant’s place of permanent residence. The administrative fee for a first name change is 1,000 CZK and for a surname change also 1,000 CZK.
Determination of paternity
This is done by writing a ‘Parental Declaration on Paternity’ during the visit of both parents, either of an unborn or already born child. If the mother or father of the child is a foreigner who does not speak Czech, the participation of a court interpreter is required, at their own expense. There is no administrative fee for the Parental Declaration on Paternity.
It is necessary to submit:
Antenatal card for unborn baby or birth certificate for born baby
Confirmation of the mother’s marital status (single, divorced or widowed)
Birth certificates of both parents and identity cards of both parents
Other documents according to the specific situation of the mother – e.g., a judgment on divorce with legal force, or the husband’s death certificate
Special Registry Office Brno
The Department of Civil Administration, Division of Registries and Citizenship of the Prague 3 District Office is intended for contact of Prague 3 citizens with the Special Registry Office in Brno. This registry office is used to record the registry events of Czech Republic citizens who were born, married or died abroad. During a personal visit to the registry office, the applicant submits foreign documents with a specific registry event which must be officially translated into Czech. Some states have concluded an international agreement with the Czech Republic on higher verification: the documents must be provided with the so-called ‘apostille’ or superlegalised in the state that issued them. The written application is sent to the Special Registry Office in Brno where, after legalising the registry event that occurred outside Czech Republic territory, they subsequently issue a Czech registry document to the applicant.
A new Czech Republic Citizenship Act No. 186/2013 Coll., has been in force since January 1st, 2014.
Certificate of Czech citizenship
To issue a certificate of Czech citizenship, it is necessary to fill in the application and the questionnaire, including the signature of the adult applicant or a minor child after the age of 15. The application must always be accompanied by a birth certificate, a document proving the date and method of acquiring foreign citizenship if the applicant has foreign citizenship, and according to the applicant’s marital status, a marriage certificate, partnership certificate, divorce certificate, proof of termination of partnership, spouse/partner death certificate. Alternatively, other documents required to establish citizenship (e.g., birth certificates of parents). The administrative fee for accepting an application for a Czech citizenship certificate is 100 CZK. The application is submitted to the competent authority according to the applicant’s permanent residence or last permanent residence.
Acquisition of Czech citizenship by birth and determination of paternity
A child acquires Czech citizenship at birth if at least one parent is a Czech Republic citizen at the time of the child’s birth, and the child was born during the parents’ marriage. The place of birth of a child has no effect on acquiring Czech citizenship by birth.
A child who is born in the Czech Republic and who would otherwise become a stateless person also acquires Czech citizenship at birth if both parents of the child are stateless and at least one of them is allowed to stay in the territory of the Czech Republic for more than 90 days on the child’s date of birth.
Situations where the parents are not married, the father is a citizen of the Czech Republic and the paternity of the child was determined by a declaration: The child (automatically) acquires Czech citizenship if:
The child’s mother is a citizen of an EU Member State, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein;
Or the child’s mother is stateless;
Or the child’s mother has a permanent residence permit in the Czech Republic.
If the child’s mother does not fall into these groups, the child acquires Czech citizenship by law when the parents prove paternity by a genetic test in the form of an expert opinion.
By law, a child whose father has been determined by a court decision to be a Czech Republic citizen acquires Czech citizenship.
If the child has not acquired Czech citizenship by determining paternity, the parents can apply for citizenship for the child.
Special cases of acquisition of Czech citizenship by children:
An adopted child, if at least one of the adoptive parents is a Czech Republic citizen.
A child under the age of 3 found in the Czech Republic, whose identity cannot be ascertained.
A child born in the Czech Republic who is stateless and is entrusted by the court to some form of alternative care.
Granting Czech citizenship
Foreigners with a permanent residence address in Prague 3 apply for Czech citizenship at the Department of Civil Administration, Division of Registries and Citizenship of the Prague 3 District Office, Havlíčkovo náměstí 700/9, 2nd floor. During the personal visit, the department employee will provide all the necessary information to those interested in being granted Czech citizenship, including an overview of the documents that need to be submitted along with the application.
Granting Czech citizenship is governed by § 11 – §27 of Act No. 186/2013 Coll. The Ministry of the Interior of the Czech Republic decides on the application; the deadline for processing is 180 days from the day when the application was delivered to the Ministry of the Interior.
The law explicitly stipulates that there is no legal right to be granted Czech citizenship. Czech citizenship can be granted if the applicant is integrated into society in the Czech Republic, especially in terms of family, work or social integration. The applicant does not prove the loss of their current citizenship (double or multiple citizenship is possible).
The applicant must have a permanent residence permit in the Czech Republic continuously as of the application’s submission date
(a) for a period of at least 5 years,
(b) for at least 3 years in the case of a citizen of an EU Member State, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein, or
(c) has a permanent residence of less than 5 years, but the total period of their continuous legal residence in the territory of the Czech Republic is at least 10 years.
The applicant must demonstrate knowledge of the Czech language and orientation in the constitutional system and in the cultural, social, geographical and historical facts of the Czech Republic. More information about the exams can be found at www.cestina-pro-cizince.cz.
With regard to the condition that the applicant must be fluent in the Czech language (with the exceptions provided by law), other information is available in detail in Czech at the relevant registry office.
Acquisition of Czech citizenship by declaration — § 35 of Act No. 186/2013
The so-called second generation of foreigners living in the Czech Republic may acquire Czech citizenship by declaration. The declaration may be made by a foreigner from the age of 18 who has not yet reached the age of 21, has a permanent residence permit in the Czech Republic and is legally present in the Czech Republic for at least two thirds of the time from the age of 10 until their declaration date. Furthermore, they will have to prove that they have not been convicted of a criminal offence or wrong-doing, unless they are regarded as having been convicted.