Work permit (for non-European citizens)

Working in Europe | Work permit | Poland
 

AGH University of Science and Technology, author: KSAF AGH

Work permit is a document that entitles foreigners to work in Poland. It applies only to citizens of non-European countries, meaning countries other than the European Union member states, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland.

When work permit is required

As far as scientific employment is concerned, generally speaking, the work permit is required in the private sector, e.g. in private companies, factories, in industry, etc.

It is the employer who has to apply for the work permit for the hired foreigner. Work permits are issued by a relevant regional office called Voivodship Office relevant for the region of employer's location. The work permit authorizes the foreigner to work only for this particular employer specified in the work permit. In order to perform work for another employer, a new work permit is required.

The document includes: the name of the employer, position or type of work, minimum salary required by law, mode (full-time/part-time) and the permit's validity date.

Note that if a foreigner does not start employment within 3 months from the starting date marked in the work permit, stops working for more than 3 months or finishes employment prior to 3 months before the end date of the permit, the employer is obliged to inform the Office within 7 days.

There are several types of work permit depending on employment conditions. Here we provide information on work permit in Polish - for employers

Work permit not required

Scientific employment at public research institutions: universities, Polish Academy of Sciences and research institutes does not require work permit.

In addition, the Polish law defines other cases, which can be related to foreign scientists, when the work permit is not required:

  • are full-time students or full-time doctoral candidates in Poland,
  • have a Polish national visa for the purpose of conducting scientific research,
  • have a temporary residence permit for the purpose of conducting scientific research or a temporary residence permit for the purpose of highly qualified empoyment (EU Blue Card),
  • are family members of foreigners who have a temporary residence permit for the purpose of conducting scientific research or a temporary residence permit for the purpose of highly qualified employment,
  • have a residence permit of another European country with a note "researcher" who come to Poland to conduct a part of the scientific research based on the short-term mobility rule (for up to 6 months),
  • are family members of the citizens of the European Union, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland,
  • have graduated from Polish secondary schools and universities (only full-time courses),
  • run a training course, participate in professional training, fulfil an advisory or supervisory function or other function requiring special qualifications and skills within European Union programmes or other international aid programmes, also based on loans taken by the government of Poland,
  • conduct occasional lectures or presentations of a particular scientific or artistic value (up to 30 days in a calendar year),
  • have temporary residence permit in order to join family,
  • are citizens of Armenia, Belarus, Moldova, Russia, Ukraine and Georgia: citizens of these countries can work in Poland without the work permit up to 6 months within subsequent 12 months. In order to employ a foreigner, the Polish employer has to register in a labour office (urząd pracy) a special declaration of intending to hire him/her. Information for Polish employers is available in Polish here.

 

The above list includes selected cases that are most relevant to performing scientific research or related activities. The list of other cases when work permit is not required is provided by the Office for Foreigners.