when it is necessary for a foreigner who wants to work in Poland
Is a work permit compulsory only if we want to “work” for another entity (whether on the basis of an employment contract or a civil law contract), or are there any other cases where a work permit is needed?
The answer to this question can be found in Art. 88 sec. 1 of the Act on Employment Promotion and Labor Market Institutions, according to which a work permit is required, if a foreigner *:
1) conducts work in Poland on the basis of an agreement concluded with an entity whose office or place of residence, or a branch, plant or other form of organized activity is situated in Poland.
2) a) works for a foreign employer,
b) is delegated to the territory of the Republic of Poland to a division or department of a foreign entity or a related entity, within the meaning of the Act of 26 July 1991 on personal income tax with a foreign employer,
c) for a period exceeding 30 days in a calendar year,
b) with no branch, plant or other form of organized activity in the territory of the Republic of Poland,
c) is delegated to the territory of the Republic of Poland in order to conduct a temporary and occasional service,
4) a) works for a foreign employer,
b) is delegated to the territory of the Republic of Poland for a period exceeding 30 days within the next 6 months for a purpose other than that defined in points 2-4.
A work permit, however, is also required when a foreigner:
5) a) stays in Poland for a total period exceeding 6 months in the next 12 months,
b) in connection with conducting a function on the management board of a legal person included in the register of entrepreneurs or operating as a partnership company in organization, or in connection with managing the matters of a limited partnership or limited joint-stock partnership as a general partner, or in connection with granting him a proxy.
Consequently, a work permit is required not only in the case of “conducting work” – i.e. being employed under an employment contract or other civil law contract, by an entity operating in Poland (or by a foreign entrepreneur in the cases specified in points 1-4). ), but also in a situation where a foreigner serves on the management board of a company or other legal person included in the register of entrepreneurs, or is a general partner and conducts matters of a limited partnership or limited joint-stock partnership, or when one of the entities mentioned granted him a proxy **
A foreigner performing any of the above-mentioned functions is obliged to obtain a work permit only if during the next 12 months his stay in Poland (in connection with performing these functions) exceeds a total of 6 months.
* IMPORTANT: all the conditions specified in points 1-5 (marked with a, b, c, d….) Must be met jointly in order to be required to have a work permit.
Example 1: the obligation to have a work permit defined in point 2 does not arise if the foreigner is delegated by a foreign employer for a period of 14 days in a calendar year to his Polish branch – because the condition marked with letter c has not been met.
** IMPORTANT: The obligation to have a work permit arises in the case of meeting any of the above-mentioned conditions – so it is enough to conduct one of the listed functions to create such an obligation, e.g. to be a member of the management board of a limited liability partnership (provided that the other conditions have been met).
If we decide that a foreigner qualifies for one of the above-mentioned groups (points 1-5), he or she is, in principle, is obliged to obtain a work permit.
However, there are many exceptions to this rule, in which a foreigner can work in Poland without obtaining a work permit – these exceptions are defined in the Act on Employment Promotion and Labor Market Institutions and in the ordinance of the Minister of Labor and Social Policy issued on the basis of the above-mentioned act.