Intensive reforming of the economy over the last two decades and joining the European Union in 2004 has allowed Poland to become one of the most promising and stable states in Central Europe.

Residence permit in Poland

Despite the fact that the standard of living of Poles is significantly lower than the leaders of Western European countries, for example, Germany and France, for many foreigners from outside the EU immigration to Poland looks quite acceptable option for integration into the European community.

In addition, the procedure of obtaining a residence permit in Poland involves much less time and material costs, compared to other European countries. By the way, the Polish authorities even welcome the movement of residents from neighboring countries.

In this article we will answer the question of how to get a residence permit in Poland in 2024.

How to get a residence permit in Poland

Any foreigner planning to stay in Poland for more than 3 months is obliged to obtain a special temporary residence permit, in other words – a residence permit. Citizens from more than 70 countries, including the European Union, Israel, the United States, Brazil and some others, can freely enter the Polish territory and already on the spot to apply for a residence permit.

Other immigrants need to obtain a visa in advance at the Polish Consulate in their country. Usually a residence permit is issued simultaneously with the visa. Or it can be done after arrival in Poland in the office for foreigners of a particular voivodeship in the place of residence.

In order for an application for a residence permit to be accepted for consideration, you must have grounds for residence in Poland. For example, official employment, business activity, study, marriage to a Polish citizen and other reasons. These points will be discussed in more detail in the article below.

The application for a residence permit is submitted by the applicant in person, as the procedure involves fingerprinting. The application processing time usually does not exceed 1-2 months. The official fee for granting a residence permit in Poland is 440 PLN (about 100 euros) and 640 PLN if permanent residence is granted.

In case of a positive decision to grant a residence permit, the foreigner is issued a so-called residence card, which allows to register at the place of residence, and a special PESEL number for tax operations.

Initially, the residence permit is issued for a period not exceeding 3 years, with the right of subsequent extension up to 10 years. As a rule, after 5 years of residence it is possible to obtain permanent residence and after another 3 years Polish citizenship.

Grounds for obtaining a residence permit in Poland

Residence permit in Poland for employment purposes

Official work – this is the most popular way for foreigners to obtain a residence permit in Poland. An obligatory condition here is an early search for a vacancy and the conclusion of an employment contract. At the same time with the residence permit the immigrant is issued a work permit in Poland.

The main difficulty of this option of migration will be the search for a job directly, because you will have to compete with both Poles themselves and citizens of the European Union, for whom a work permit in Poland is not required. Moreover, the working conditions and salary level of a foreigner must comply with the legal norms.

In case of loss of workplace or change of employer, it is necessary to officially, i.e. in writing, notify the local authorities within 15 days. After that, the migrant has 30 days to conclude a new labor contract and renew the residence permit. If these conditions are met, it is not necessary to leave the territory of Poland.

One of the options for obtaining a residence permit in Poland for employment purposes is to apply for the so-called EU Blue Card, which is issued to highly qualified workers from abroad. For this purpose, you need to have serious professional skills and experience in a particular field.

Residence permit in Poland for business purposes

Foreign entrepreneurs can obtain a residence permit to fully manage and develop their business in Poland. For this purpose, the following conditions must be met:

  • ensure the employment of at least two Polish citizens or foreigners who do not require a work permit in Poland;

  • over the last 12 months, the company's activity must be effective and generate substantial income;

  • in case of failure to fulfill the previous two conditions, the foreign entrepreneur must prove that he/she has sufficient assets and investments that will allow him/her to meet the above requirements in the near future.

Residence permit in Poland for the purpose of education or scientific activity

A residence permit in Poland is granted to foreign students if they have proof of enrollment in a Polish university. In addition, it is necessary to find a place of residence in advance (hostel or apartment rental) and prove the availability of funds to cover the costs of education and living.

Initially, the residence permit is issued for a period equivalent to one academic year plus 3 months. Subsequently, the document is subject to renewal on general grounds, for a maximum of 3 years.

In addition to students, foreign scientists can apply for a residence permit in Poland. In order to do so, you need to conclude a formal agreement on carrying out research work with one of the Polish state institutions. As a rule, the residence permit is granted for the period of realization of the scientific project.

Residence permit in Poland for the purpose of family reunification

Any foreigner who has a residence permit in Poland can apply for this status for close family members – spouses and children under 18 years of age, including adopted children. The main requirements here are proof of kinship, financial security of the immigrant and availability of a place of residence in Poland.

These were the main and most popular options for obtaining a residence permit in Poland. Sometimes residence permits are granted to religious figures, graduates of Polish universities and refugees from other countries.

Documents for registration of a residence permit in Poland

Depending on the situation, the Polish authorities may require additional information, but, as a rule, the list of documents for obtaining a residence permit in Poland is as follows:

  1. Completed application form and 4 copies.

  2. A copy of an identity document (passport).

  3. Medical insurance.

  4. Four color photographs (3.5 cm x 4.5 cm).

  5. Proof of sufficient financial income to cover both one's own expenses and those of close relatives financially dependent on the immigrant. The minimum is 634 PLN (about 140 EUR) for the main candidate for residence permit and 514 PLN for each family member.

  6. Proof of a place of residence in Poland (real estate lease or purchase contract).

  7. An official document confirming the basis for granting a residence permit (employment contract, letter of enrollment in a university, certificate of business registration, etc.).

What gives a residence permit in Poland

  • Free movement within the Schengen area.

  • Official employment and business activity in Poland.

  • Access to the European lending system with low interest rates.

  • The right to education and scientific activity in educational institutions of Poland on an equal basis with Poles.

  • In some cases, the possibility to receive social benefits and other assistance from the state.

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