Working in the EU as a non-EU resident

12th Nov 2021

Labour law regarding non-EU nationals can be confusing. In this article we compiled all you need to know about working in the EU if you're not an EU citizen.

Persons who are nationals of countries of the European Economic Area (Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) don't need any type of a permit to work in the EU. The same thing applies to EU nationals working in these three countries.

People coming from these countries are entitled to same conditions regarding work as nationals of their host country:

  • Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia,
  • Russia,
  • Albania, Montenegro, North Macedonia,
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Serbia, Ukraine,
  • Andorra, San Marino,
  • 79 countries of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States.

Nationals of countries that don't have an agreement with the EU are still entitled to a lot of the same rights such as:

Don't lose hope if none of the above applies to you! Different countries have different requirements. You may still be able to apply for different types of residence permits. This article about work permits in the EU may be helpful.

For instance, this is how the system works in the Czech Republic:

Type of stay Length of stay Intended person
Schengen Visa Up to 90 days Travellers
Temporary residence Plan on living in the EU for more than 3 months EU residents
Residence permit After 2 years of living in the EU Immediate family member of an EU citizen
Long-term residence After 5 years of living in the EU Persons who have lived in the EU for over 5 years
Blue card After signing an employment contract longer than 6 months Highly qualified workers

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