This article provides information on how to balance work with caring for children or a family member (such as parents or a partner) and what rights you have as an employee responsible for children (or a family member). You will learn what to do if your children (or family members) are sick, need to see a doctor, or if you need to adjust your work due to caring for them.
I need to take my child (or a family member) to the doctor
If you need to take your child or a family member to the doctor within your working hours, you have the right to take a paid leave from work. This leave is provided for the necessary time, up to 1 day.
You must inform your employer that your presence is necessary and that the treatment or examination could not be done outside of your working hours and provide evidence in a timely manner.
The doctor should provide you with the necessary confirmation (a document).
I need to stay home with a sick child
If you have a child under 10 years old who is sick or injured, you can stay at home and take care of them. If it's a child older than 10 years or another loved one, the employer will excuse your absence from work only if the doctor determines that the child or a family member requires necessary treatment or care.
Sick Pay – Health insurance benefit
If you cannot go to work due to the above reasons, you can also apply for "sick pay" - a partial replacement of your salary. This is a benefit of health insurance, so you need to be insured to receive it (i.e., be employed and have a work contract). There are four steps to the process:
1. The decision about the need for care or treatment is issued by the treating doctor,
2. You should promptly submit this form to your employer;
3. The employer submits the documents to the District Social Security Administration
4. The District SSA pays the benefit to your account.
How long can I use Sick Pay?
- You can receive sick pay for a maximum of 9 calendar days (including Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays). During these 9 days, parents can take turns caring for the child.
- If you are a single parent living with at least one child under 16 who still attends primary school, you can receive sick pay for up to 16 calendar days.
- In case of long-term illness or the need for long-term home care after hospitalization, it is possible to use long-term sick pay.
How much of my salary does the Sick Pay cover?
The amount of sick pay is calculated from your income and it is approximately 60% of your reduced daily assessment base per calendar day. You can estimate the approximate amount of the benefit on the MPSV calculator.
You are not entitled to sick pay if:
- you work under an agreement for work,
- agreement for performing work,
- you are a self-employed person (OSVČ) voluntarily enrolled in health insurance.
Your Rights in regards to Childcare
Your employer cannot terminate your employment due to frequent absences from work due to childcare. They also cannot terminate your employment while you care for a child under the age of 10.
I need reduced working hours due to childcare
If you cannot work full-time or all days of the week due to childcare of a child up to 15 years of age or primarily care for a dependent person, you can request:
- shorter working hours,
- a shift at the beginning or end of the working day,
- or work only on certain days of the week, etc.
Your employer must grant your request unless there are serious operational reasons that prevent it. If there were serious operational reasons, the employer would need to prove them.
I can't travel on business trips due to childcare
- If you are caring for a child under 8 years of age, your employer can send you on a business trip to another city only if you agree to it.
- The same applies if you are the sole caregiver for a child under 15 years of age. If you do not agree, the employer cannot send you on a business trip. The consent given in the employment contract does not apply in this case.
If you need help or advice regarding child care or caring for loved ones, contact the free counseling provided by the Integration Centers and non-governmental non-profit organizations throughout the Czech Republic.