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Employment of foreigners

This article is written according to the legal status current as of: 2017-01-05

Employment of foreigners

When discussing issues relating to the employment of foreigners in the territory of the Republic of Polandyou may come across many terms that need explanation. Check out their meaning in order to better understand regulations presented in this  section.

Polish Charter  – (literary meaning Pole’s Card) a document confirming belonging to the Polish nation which entitles its holder to work legally in Poland without a work permit.

Tolerated stay – a status granted if the expulsion of the foreigner could be effected only to the country where his/her right to life and liberty would be threatened or if the expulsion of the foreigner is unenforceable due to reasons independent of the body enforcing the decision on expulsion or of the foreigner.

Residence card – a document that certifies a foreigner's identity during his/her stay in Poland. Besides that, along with a travel document, it allows a foreigner to cross the Polish border many times without a visa.

EAA – European Economic Area; it unites the 27 EU Member States and the three EEA EFTA States (Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway) into an Internal Market governed by the same basic rules.

Refugee status – a status granted to an alien who has a well-founded fear for being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion and owing to that fear he/she is unwilling to avail him-/herself of the protection of that country.

Supplementary protection – a status granted to a foreigner who does not fulfil the terms and conditions of receiving a refugee status; nevertheless, his/her return to the country could expose him to actual risk of incurring serious injury through awarding a penalty of death or performing the execution.

Asylum – it is granted to a foreigner when providing her/him with protection is necessary and if it lays in the best interest of the Republic of Poland. Such a foreigner is granted a permit to settle.

Performance of work by a foreigner – refers to employment, performance of other paid work or performing functions in the management boards of legal entities engaged in business activities.

Illegal work performed by a foreigner – refers to work performed by a foreigner who is not entitled to preform work pursuant to the provisions Article 87 par. 1 of the Act or not is not exempt from the duty to obtain a work permit pursuant to separate provisions or whose basis of stay does not entitle him/her to perform work, or who performs work in a different position or on different terms than those indicated in the work permit with the exception of Article 88f par. 1 and 1b, or who performs work in a different position or on different terms than those indicated in the temporary residence permit referred to in Article 114, Article 126,  Article 127 or Article 142 par. 3, with the exemption of Article 119 and Article 135 par. 3 of the Act of 12 December 2013 on Aliens, or who performs work without concluding the required employment contracts or civil-law contracts.

Illegal employment of a foreigner – refers to employing a foreigner who does not possess a valid visa or other document that constitutes a basis of stay on the territory of the Republic of Poland or whose basis of stay in Poland does not entitle him/her to perform work, or employing a foreigner without a work permit in the situation when it is required, or on different terms or in different position than that indicated in the work permit, with the exemption of Article 88i, or without concluding the required employment contracts or civil-law contracts.

Work performed in a highly skilled profession –provision of work under employment of a foreigner who has proven enough competence and higher professional qualifications who - regardless of the provisions of the legal relationship between the parties – carries out work for or under the supervision
of another person and receives remuneration for the work done.

High professional skills – qualifications obtained in the course of higher education studies,
or at least comparable five years' professional experience, necessary to perform the work specified
in the contract of employment or a job offer.

Temporary residence permit and work permit – it is granted when a foreigner plans to stay on the territory of the Republic of Poland in order to perform work and he/she meets all of the requirements indicated in Article 114 par. 1 od the Act of 12 December 2013 on Aliens

Temporary residence permit for work in highly skilled professions (EU blue card) – it is granted for skilled workers who intend to reside on the territory of Poland in order to perform in highly skilled profession and meet all of the conditions listed in Article 127 of the Act of December 2013 on Aliens    


Remember! All the materials posted on the portal www.zielonalinia.gov.pl have been drawn up by the editorial group and are for your information. The editors have put a considerable effort to make the provided information accurate and reliable. However, the information does not constitute a binding interpretation of the law.