Based on the practice required by the EU law, third-country nationals receive in the Czech Republic since July 4th 2011 residence permit documents with biometric data. Since August 2nd 2021, the same approach has been applied also to EU citizens’ family members.
What is biometrics and why is it collected?
Biometrics is a process during which a special technical device photographs your face and takes your fingerprints.
Biometrics is taken mainly to verify the authenticity of a residence permit document and the identity of its holder by comparing the biometric data on the data carrier with the data in the information system, or by comparing the biometric data on the data carrier with the currently displayed biometric data of the holder taken during the process of verifying the holder’s identity.
Who does biometrics apply to?
The obligation to have one’s biometric data collected applies to all third countries citizens (including British citizens) who reside in the Czech Republic with a:
- long-term residence permit,
- permanent residence permit (except for EU citizens),
- temporary residence permit of an EU citizen’s family member,
- permanent residence permit of an EU citizen’s family member,
- one of the types of international protection (asylum or subsidiary protection).
It does not apply to EU citizens, nor to third countries citizens who reside in the Czech Republic with a visa.
Where is biometrics collected? Is it possible to come without an appointment to have the biometric data collected?
Biometric data is collected at all the Ministry of the Interior offices. However, if you want to have your biometric data taken, the office’s employees must have your complete corresponding documentation available in the office. Therefore, you cannot go to the office without an appointment. You must always make an appointment for the office where your file is.
Is it possible to refuse to have your biometric data collected, or to have someone else undergo the process on your behalf?
No. The whole process of biometric data collection is connected with a given person who will then receive a corresponding document. Also for that reason, you cannot have someone else undergo the process on your behalf.
When is biometric data not collected?
In some cases, mainly due to anatomic or physiologic changes, or in the case of hand disability, only a visual record is taken.
In the case of children under 6 years of age, only a visual record is taken.
What happens with the biometric data taken?
Your biometric data is then stored on a data carrier located in your residence permit document. Data storage is governed by data protection rules. Biometric data transferred and stored by the Ministry of the Interior to the Foreigners Information System will be deleted 60 days after the expiration or revocation of the residence permit document’s validity. Biometric data can be only used to verify the authenticity of a residence permit document and your identity.
Is it possible to check whether the data carrier is working?
Yes, you have a right to request verification of the functioning of the data carrier. If it turns out that the carrier is not working due to reasons you did not cause, you have a right to be issued a new document.