Status of the Artist in the Czech Republic

The labour law of individual EU Member States is harmonised with a wide range of EU directives. The European Union lays down the minimum standards that have to be implemented by its Member States, for example in Directive No 97/81/EC (December 1997) on part-time work, Directive No 2003/88/EC on the organisation of working time (November 2003) and Directive No 2004/38/EC on the freedom of movement (April 2004). Information on the EU labour law can be found here.

Artists in the Czech Republic have no special (“official”) legal status. There are no lists or registers of artists and no authority that would keep records of the “artistic status” or that would permit, assess or approve it. The artistic status depends, to a certain degree, on the actual professional level and activities of the particular artist and on the quality and type of the contract the artist is entering into. There are two basic status categories: artists are either self-employed or employed.


A theatre books an actor for several performances for a period of three months. In carrying out the work the actor is bound by the instructions of the theatre as his employer, and his place of work and working hours are defined clearly. The work thus has elements of “dependent work”, and as such it has to be carried out compulsorily in an employment relationship, which is (with some exceptions) subject to the payment of health insurance and social security contributions. If, however, the actor offers his solo programme to the theatre, this would constitute self-employment (see Self-employed Person).