Why Many Seniors in the Czech Republic Choose to Retire Early?

Retiring early has become a popular choice for many seniors in the Czech Republic, even if it means reducing their pension. According to Lenka Desatova, the chair of the Council of Seniors, one of the primary reasons is that seniors often feel like they can’t keep up with the demands of their job, resulting in penalties at work.

Burnout syndrome, a lack of interest in work, and physical health issues are other reasons people opt for early retirement. Urgent family care, particularly caring for parents or children’s families, also drives many people to retire early.

Desatova acknowledges the government’s efforts to keep people employed, given the low unemployment and a surplus of job vacancies. However, she warns that no crisis scenario has been foreseen if unemployment rates rise, which was one of the reasons for early retirement in the past.

The government has proposed changes to early retirement policies, such as shortening the maximum period from five to three years and increasing the reduction of old-age pensions.

Trade unions have criticized these changes, warning that they will impact people unable to work due to health reasons or job market conditions. The changes could result in a more significant reduction in their old-age pension or make them ineligible for early retirement altogether.