Closure of Czech Post Offices Leaves CzechPoint Services Scarce and Inconvenient for Citizens

The recent closure of numerous Czech Post offices, many of which also provided the CzechPoint service, has left citizens facing increased inconvenience and longer travel distances to access essential services. CzechPoint offers a valuable service for verifying handwritten signatures on paper documents, such as contracts, and has been available at select post offices and town halls. However, with the closure of these offices, people are now forced to seek alternative locations for these services. Notaries have been offering CzechPoint services since 2008, but the cost of verifying signatures with a notary is nearly three times higher.

CzechPoint provides a range of services beyond signature verification, including verified outputs from various registers such as the land registry, public register, trade register, list of qualified suppliers, insolvency register, driver’s register, list of participants in the ISOH module, basic registers, and the ePrescription system. These services are vital for individuals and businesses alike, enabling them to access accurate and verified information for legal and administrative purposes.

The cost difference between CzechPoint services at post offices and notaries is significant. At CzechPoint, the administrative fee for verifying one signature on a document is 30 crowns at a post office or town hall, as per the tariff outlined in Act No. 634/2004 Coll. on administrative fees. In contrast, the fee for a notary to verify one signature is 85 crowns, including VAT. Notaries operate under a different fee structure regulated by the notary tariff set by the Ministry of Justice.

Moreover, the closure of post offices also affects other services offered within CzechPoint. For example, obtaining extracts from various registers or public records incurs different costs depending on whether one goes to a post office or a notary. The price disparities, along with the inconvenience of limited access to CzechPoint services, pose challenges for citizens seeking these essential services.

The closure of CzechPost offices has already resulted in the disappearance of CzechPoint services in several locations, such as Prague’s Vršovice, Hostivař, Černošice, Benešov’s Poštovní Street, and Poděbrady’s Jiráskova Street. In total, around 300 post offices are being closed, further exacerbating the accessibility issues faced by individuals in need of CzechPoint services.

The discontinuation of CzechPoint services at post offices highlights the need for alternative solutions or measures to ensure the continued availability and accessibility of these essential services to citizens throughout the Czech Republic.

Article by Prague Forum

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