Penalties for illegal work in Poland

On January 30, 2011, in Work permits, by Kalina Jaroslawska

This is just a short entry to write about consequences of illegal work in Poland.

A foreigner will be considered to work illegally in Poland if:

  • he or she works without a required work permit or
  • he or she occupies a different post than stated in the work permit or
  • he or she works under different conditions than stated in the work permit.

A foreigner working illegally may be fined at minimum 1000 PLN and/or expelled from Poland.

An employer employing a foreigner illegally may be fined at minimum 3000 PLN.

This post closes the work permits series of entries. If you have any questions on that, or feel some more details would seem useful, please do not hesitate to ask! :-)

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How to obtain a work permit in Poland – procedural aspects

On January 30, 2011, in Work permits, by Kalina Jaroslawska

The important thing about obtaining a work permit in Poland is that the future employer applies for it, not the employee; the employee doesn’t event participate in the procedure.

The application for the work permit must be filed with the relevant provincial governor, based on an official form. It must be accompanied by a set of additional documents, including corporate papers and a copy of last year’s tax return of the employer, personal information about the employee-to-be, head count of the employer plus some further documents, depending on the type of the work permit being applied for.

The work permit is generally issued for a fixed period of time, no longer than 3 years, and may be renewed (some variations apply depending on the kind of legal arrangement under which the foreigner is to work in Poland).

The work permit pertains to an individual foreigner; it names the employer and the post to be occupied or the kind of work to be done by the employee.

The fee for issuing the work permit is 50-200 PLN, depending on the length of employment and the legal arrangement under which work is to be done.

Once the work permit has been issued, the foreigner will be able to apply for a relevant residency instrument (e.g. a visa with the right to work or a temporary residency permit).

Practical hint: if you need a work permit for a foreigner, hire a professional firm to do it for you. They will help you gather the necessary documents and guide you through the procedure. It will be easier and quicker this way.

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Work permits in Poland and the residency instruments

On January 28, 2011, in Work permits, by Kalina Jaroslawska

As I have written in my initial entry on work permits in Poland, whether or not a foreign national needs a work permit depends on the legal instrument he or she holds to legitimize the stay in Poland.

The idea is that with some residency instruments you are not required to obtain a work permit even if you do qualifying work.

Examples of these instruments include:

  • a settlement permit;
  • a European Communities long-term residency permit;
  • some instruments based of the refugee or asylum status.
  • temporary residency permit issued to a spouse of a Polish citizen in connection with the matrimony.

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Work permits in Poland – EU and EEA nationals

On January 26, 2011, in Work permits, by Kalina Jaroslawska

You are allowed to work in Poland without a work permit if you are:

  • an EU member state national;
  • a national of an EEA member state other than the EU (i.e. Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein);
  • a national of another state which is party to a free movement of people treaty concluded between that state and the European Community (for now: Switzerland),
  • a family member of a national above, i.e. his or her spouse as well as his or her descendant up to 21 years of age or depending financially on the said national.

However, the freedom to work is not absolute in the sense that there still may be some (though not very troublesome) immigration formalities to attend to, depending on the length of stay. More on this in forthcoming entries on immigration.

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Work permits in Poland – legal arrangements covered

On January 24, 2011, in Work permits, by Kalina Jaroslawska

A work permit is required if a foreign national does qualifying work in Poland under one of the following arrangements:

  • under a contract concluded with a Poland based entity – this is the most common situation, where a foreign citizen enters into an employment contract or other directly with his or her Polish employer;
  • as a result of having been posted to Poland by his or her foreign employer to that employer’s Polish branch office or establishment, affiliated organization, for a period longer than 30 days in a calendar year;
  • as a result of having been posted to Poland by his or her foreign employer without a Polish branch office, establishment or other affiliated organization, in order to provide temporary or occasional services – this will apply if a foreign company entered into a service contract with a Polish organization and posts its employees to Poland to ensure delivery of the contract (e.g. construction works);
  • as a result of having been posted to Poland by his or her foreign employer for other purposes than above, for a period longer than 3 months during 6 consecutive months.

Foreign individuals holding positions in management boards of Polish legal entities will need a work permit only if they reside in the territory of Poland, in connection with their function, for a cumulative total exceeding 6 months during 12 consecutive months.

The statutory instruments issued to complement the work permits regulations list a number of individual work permit exemptions, which should be applied on a case-by-case basis.

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