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Who needs a work permit in Poland

Employment based on a work permit may be undertaken by foreigners from the EU countries staying legally in Poland based on:

  1. a visa;
  2. a Schengen Visa or another residence document issued by another Schengen zone country;
  3. a temporary residence permit, for the whole period of validity of the residence permit;
  4. in a visa-free regime.

The following foreigners are allowed to work in Poland without a work permit:

  1. full-time students studying in Poland based on a visa;
  2. full-time students studying in Poland and residing in Poland based on a temporary residence permit issued because of their studies for the whole period of their residence permit;
  3. graduates of Polish upper secondary schools, full-time studies and full-time doctoral studies at Polish universities as well as scientific and research institutes;
  4. holders of a valid Polish Card;
  5. holders of a permanent residence permit;
  6. persons with a refugee status granted in Poland;
  7. persons who have received supplementary protection in Poland;
  8. holders of an EU long-term residence permit issued in Poland or, in special situations, issued by another EU member state;
  9. holders of a tolerated stay permit in Poland;
  10. persons using temporary protection in Poland;
  11. persons using humanitarian protection in Poland;
  12. citizens of an EU member state or an EEA country or a country not belonging to the EEA whose citizens may enjoy freedom of personal movement based on an agreement concluded by this country with the European Community and its member states or members of such person's family;
  13. persons being victims of human trafficking if they fulfil specific conditions;
  14. holders of a temporary residence permit in Poland granted in connection with entering into marriage with a Polish citizen or a foreigner having a refugee status, supplementary protection, permanent residence permit or an EU long-term residence permit, tolerated stay permit or temporary protection granted in Poland;
  15. persons who, as a result of a life situation - such as e.g. death of a spouse being an EU citizen or divorce from an EU citizen - retained their right of residence based on the temporary residence permit in Poland;
  16. persons who filed a complete application for a temporary residence permit within the required time limit if they had the right to work without a permit directly before filing the application;
  17. persons conducting trainings, participating in work placements, performing the functions as a part of EU actions or activities of any other international aid programmes;
  18. persons being foreign language teachers who perform work in nurseries, schools, educational institutions, centres, teacher training facilities and colleges;
  19. persons working for 30 days in a calendar year as scientists or artists;
  20. persons authorised based on the Agreement establishing an association between the European Economic Community and Turkey;
  21. persons belonging to other groups, i.e. foreign language teachers delegated to work in cultural institutions, members of armed forces, regular mass media correspondents, sports professionals, clergy.

How to obtain a work permit

A work permit is issued by the local Provincial Governor competent for the place of residence/office of the employer.

The employer shall apply for a work permit for a foreigner.

Documents attached to the application should be filed in the originals or officially confirmed for compliance with the original (except for identity card and passport).

Documents issued in a foreign language must be translated into Polish by a Polish sworn translator.

Citizens of Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Moldavia, Russia and Ukraine may work in Poland without the necessity to have a work permit for the period not exceeding 6 months within subsequent 12 months based on a declaration of the employer on their willingness to give work to a foreigner filed by the Polish employer and registered at the District Labour Office.

A condition for legal performance of work in this case is entering into a written employment agreement or civil law agreement (contract of mandate or contract for specific work).