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POLAND: Changes to Work Permit Regulations from 1st January 2018

Various changes to work permit regulations for non-EEA nationals came into effect on 1st January 2018.

What are the changes?

  • The requirement to obtain a Type B work permit has been extended to a company’s non-EEA national corporate proxy or general partner, in addition to the “management board members” as previously. The type B permit is required for stays of over 6 months in a year.
  • For new work permit applications, the employer must present documents confirming that the foreign national meets all the requirements indicated at the labour market search/workforce demand stage. This includes reference letters, diplomas and certificates in original or certified copy with a sworn translation into Polish if necessary.
  • New work permit applications must be accompanied by a declaration of no criminal record of the employer (whether a Polish entity or a foreign entity) or a person acting on their behalf, signed by the employer (meaning by a member of the board/director entered in the official registration documents. This declaration cannot be signed by a proxy) – on a template stipulated in the relevant regulations.
  • New grounds for refusal of a work permit have been established, including no proof of the applicant’s qualifications, no proof of the employer’s financial means, the employer not being compliant with tax, social security, health insurance, labour fund or guaranteed employee benefits fund requirements or being liquidated or struck off any register, or anyone working on behalf of the employer being convicted of certain acts.
  • The work permit expires on the date on which the foreigner is granted a long-term EU residence permit, a permanent residence permit or a temporary residence and work permit in connection with work with the same employer and in the same position.
  • A new seasonal work permit (Type S) has been launched, for non-EEA nationals working in agriculture, forestry, hunting, fishing, hospitality and food services. Seasonal workers under the new permit will not be restricted to a specific position, meaning they will be able to work in any position in the aforementioned industries. A seasonal work permit may be issued for a maximum of 9 months in a calendar year.
  • New rules have been introduced for employers registering a declaration that they intend to employ a national of Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, Russia or Ukraine for six months in a calendar year, under “special permission” which exempts these workers from a work permit.
  • Note that processing times have recently increased considerably.

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