Legal Environment

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In this page: Business Contract | Intellectual Property | Legal Framework of Business | International Dispute Resolution

 

Business Contract

General Observation
You must state precisely the obligations of the vendor and the buyer, subject of the contract and price as fundamental proprieties of the contract. It's better to precise the transfer of the property law to a buyer and place of handover too.
Law Applicable to the Contract
Commercial code (Act No. 213/1991 Coll.) and Civil code (Act No 40/1964 Coll.).
Czech Republic is a signatory to the Vienna Convention on International Contracts.
Advisable Incoterms
Choose FOB or CIF, or more. Avoid EXW if you do not want to be involved in organizing domestic transport in Czech Republic.
Language of Domestic Contract
The contract could be written in Czech or in the language of the second contract party. It depends on the agreement of both participants. It is possible to use other international language too, but both parties must agree.
Other Laws Which Can Be Used in Domestic Contracts
It is recommended to state ahead the law which will be used. It is better to choose some international law system which is accessible and known.

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Intellectual Property

National Organisations
The body responsible for the protection of intellectual property is Ùrad Prùmyslového Vlastnictvi (Industrial Property Office). You can also consult the Copyright Law Department of the Ministry of Culture.
Regional Organisations
For the protection of patents: the European Patent Office (EPO). To control trademarks, designs and models: the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO).
International Membership
Member of the WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization)
Signatory to the Paris Convention For the Protection of Intellectual Property
Membership to the TRIPS agreement - Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS)
 

National Regulation and International Agreements

 
Type of property and law Validity International Agreements Signed
Patent
 
Act. o 527/1990 on Inventions and Rationalization Proposals
maximum of 20 years Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT)
Trademark
 
Act. No 441/2003 on Trademark
10 years Trademark Law Treaty
Protocol Relating to the Madrid Agreement Concerning the International Registration of Marks
Design
 
Act. No 207/2000 coll. on Protection on Industrial Design
maximum of 25 years  
Copyright
 
Law No. 121/2000 Coll. on Copyright, Rights Related to Copyright and on the Amendment of Certain Laws (Copyright Act)
Financial rights run for the life of the author and for 70 years after his death. Berne convention For the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works
Convention for the Protection of Producers of Phonograms Against Unauthorized Duplication of Their Phonograms
Rome ConventionFor the Protection of Performers, Producers of Phonograms and Broadcasting Organizations
WIPO Copyright Treaty
WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty
Industrial Models
 
Act No. 478/1992 Coll. on Utility Models
4 years  

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Legal Framework of Business

Equity of Judgments

Equal Treatment of Nationals and Foreigners
Yes
The Language of Justice
Czech
Recourse to an Interpreter
Possible
Legal Similarities

As a member of the European Union, the Czech Republic National Law must comply with the conditions of the Community Legislation. As of 2016, the Czech Republic has not yet submitted a declaration on the compulsory ICJ jurisdiction.

    • The Czech constitution is comprised of several constitutional acts that collectively are known as the constitutional order of the Czech Republic.
    • The principle source of law is the Constitution of the Czech Republic, which contains the Charter of Fundamental Rights and Basic Freedoms based upon the civil law system originating from Austro-Hungarian codes.
    • All international agreements adopted by the Czech Parliament take priority over national legislation.
    • Parliamentary Statues
    • Derived legislation including government orders, ministry notifications, regional ordinances and municipal ordinances.
 

The Different Legal Codes

 
Foundation of the state, rights of individuals Constitution of the Czech Republic (Act No. 1/1993 Coll.)

Charter of Fundamental Rights and Basic Freedoms

Civil law, rights of possession Civil code (Act No 40/1964 Coll.)
Company law, corporate status Commercial code (Act No. 213/1991 Coll.)
Labour law Labor Code (Law No.3262/2006 Coll.)
 
Checking National Laws Online
Czech law in English
Czech codes on-line, Businesscenter.cz (in Czech)
Other Useful Resources
Justice.cz, Official Server of the Czech judicial System.
Ministry of Justice
Country Guides
LOC, Guide to Law Online provided by the Library of Congress
 

The Jurisdictions

 
The Constitutional Court  The Court does not form part of the system of ordinary courts. The competencies are given by the Constitution. The main objective is to protect basic rights and freedoms. It has also some competencies concerning the electoral law and consideration of the accordance of international treaties with the Constitution.
The Supreme Court The highest judicial authority both in civil and criminal law with the exception of the matters concerning the powers of the Constitutional Court. The Supreme Court hears, in particular, extraordinary means of remedy and is responsible for uniformity of judicial practice.
The Supreme Administrative Court The highest judicial authority in matters falling within the competence of administrative courts. The task is to provide protection to individual (subjective) public rights of natural and legal persons. An additional task is to ensure the unity and legality of the decisional practice of regional courts and administrative authorities.
2 High Courts in Prague and in Olomouc Territorial jurisdiction of 2 main regions Bohemia (Prague) and Moravia (Olomouc). 2nd instance.
8 Regional Courts The civil and criminal proceedings are governed by the "2nd instance“ principle. This means that if a case is decided by a first instance court, usually a district court, the appeal against such first instance judgment is heard and decided by a second instance court whose decision cannot be challenged by any ordinary means of remedy. The law stipulates specific cases when a regional court acts as a first instance court and in this event a high court acts as second instance (e.g. serious crime cases or most of commercial cases).
86 District Courts Territorial jurisdiction. 1st instance
Supreme Public Prosecutor s Office Represents public prosecution in the criminal proceedings. It performs also other duties where specified by law.
2 High Public Prosecutor's Offices in Prague and in Olomouc Territorial prosecution. 2nd instance
86 Regional and District Prosecutor's Offices Territorial prosecution. 1st instance
 
 

Court Officials

Justices of the Constitutional Court of the Czech Republic
Court consist of 15 Justices appointed by the President with the consent of the Senate for the period of 10 years
Court judges
Hierarchy is done by the hierarchy of the Courts, Judges are appointed to their office for an unlimited term by the President of the Republic upon nominations submitted by the Minister of Justice.
Public Prosecutors
Hierarchy is done by the hierarchy of the Prosecutor s Offices. Supreme Public Prosecutor is appointed by Government on the proposal from the Minister of Justice. Lower Public Prosecutors are appointed by the Minister of Justice.
Lawyers, practicing attorneys
Are associated in the Czech Bar Association. General sphere of action.
 
 

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International Dispute Resolution

Arbitration
Recognized under the Czech law as a legitimate method for settling disputes, used both - in the field of international transactions and domestic disputes (especially in the commerce area)
Arbitration Law
The area of arbitration proceedings is regulated in Act no. 216/1994 Coll. In dispute resolution, some gray areas remain. The judiciary is independent, but decisions may vary from court to court.
Conformity to International Commercial Arbitration Rules
Party to the New York Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards.
Party to the Geneva Protocol on Arbitration Clauses.
Party to the Geneva Convention of the Execution of Foreign Arbitral Awards.
Appointment of Arbitrators
Parties may agree that one or more arbiters or the permanent court of arbitration (arbitration agreement) may hear and rule on any property disputes which would otherwise fall under the authority of the courts.
Arbitration Procedure
After hearing the parties, the arbitrator makes an award. One instance only. It is not possible to appeal against the arbitral award rendered at the end of the proceedings.
Permanent Arbitration Bodies
Court of Arbitration at the Chamber of Commerce of the Czech Republic and the Agrarian Chamber of the Czech Republic (Sectors Covered: General sphere)

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Latest Update: June 2022