Trial period

This article is written according to the legal status current as of: 2020-06-16

trial period

What is trial period?

It is a process of acquiring practical vocational skills by an unemployed person who performs tasks in a place of work, and does so without concluding an employment contract.

Which employers can benefit from this form of aid?

An unemployed person may be sent for a trial period to an employer, agricultural manufacturing co-operative, a private person, living and running – business activities on their own account on the territory of Poland. Those business activities may include growing plants and livestock production, provided that a person in charge of them is an owner of a farming real estate, with the arable land area exceeding 2 calculation hectares or runs a special division of agricultural production.

How long can a trial period last?

The labour office may assign an unemployed person to a trial period for the period of up to 6 months and in the case of a person below 30 years of age for the period of up to 12 months.

How can you take on a trainee?

You should submit an application form to the competent district labour office. The district labour office will inform whether the application is accepted or rejected within 30 calendar days of submitting it. The rejection should be always justified.

If your application is accepted, you sign a contract with the district labour office  where the apprenticeship programme and other necessary information are included.

The contract determines:

  • name of an unemployed person assigned to carry out apprenticeship trail period,
  • name of a person assigned to be the trainee’s mentor,
  • start and end dates of the apprenticeship.

Useful information

You can indicate the unemployed person whom you want to accept for the trail period in the application form.
You are obliged to comply with the trial period programme that you included in the application form.

Your obligations

You are obliged to:

  • acquaint the trainee with the trial period as well as with their duties and rights,
  • provide prophylactic health protection,
  • train the trainee in safety regulations,
  • acquaint the trainee with the work regulations,
  • provide the trainee with the necessary working clothes and footwear,
  • inform the district labour office about the instances of the trainee’s unjustified absence and facts affecting the realization of the program without delay (that is within 7 calendar days),
  • give the trainee two days off for every 30 calendar days of carried out work upon his/her request, (Remember that trial period is not employment as defined in provisions of the Labour Code, thus during trial period the trainee is not entitled to unpaid leave or special leave),
  • give the trainee written references after completion of the trial period, including list of tasks he/she performed and acquired experience.

You are not entitled to pay out additional remuneration, benefits or bonuses, etc. to the trainee.

The trainee is obliged to make a report on the realization of the programme.

The employer has the right to terminate a trail period:

  • after two days of unjustified absence of the trainee,
  • if the apprentice violates labour regulations,
  • if his justified absence prevents the completion of the trial period programme.

The district labour office after receiving a motion from a trainee or ex officio may terminate the contract if the employer does not complete the trial period program or when he/she fails to meet the requirements of trial period organisation. The district labour office takes the decision after hearing the employer. 


If you expect that during the trial period it may be necessary to send the trainee on a business trip or you may need him to work shifts you are obliged to inform the labour office about it. Otherwise, such a business trip or working on shift is violation of the terms of contract.

Why is it worth taking on a trainee?

You gain a trainee, but you do not have to conclude a contract of employment with him/her. Taking on a trainee does not require paying him any money.

Good to know!

Before you apply please read carefully the rules specifying the conditions of applying for the chosen form of support to the chosen district labour office. Internal regulations may contain additional conditions of applying for the chosen form of support, it may include the obligation to employ the trainee after the trial period is over, as well as the maximum period the apprenticeship may last.

Legal basis
Act of 20 April 2004 on employment promotion and labour market institutions (Articles 2, 34, 49, 53)

Regulation of the Minister of Labour and Social Policy of 20 August 2009 on specific requirements concerning trial periods organized by labour offices

Development: Editorial team of Zielona Linia

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.