Mistakes most commonly made in documents upon submitting applications for residence legalisation in Poland

Date of submitting the application

The application for a temporary residence, a permanent residence or a long-term EU resident’s residence permit together with a set of documents has to be submitted on the last day of legal residence at the latest. Remember, that if any documents are missing and it is considered a formal defect, and those documents are not delivered within 7 days of the day of receiving summons – the application will be left unprocessed. There is no limit on how early you can submit an application for a residence permit and from the point of view of minimising risk – it is worth submitting an application as early as possible. 

Application form

The application form should be completed in Polish language.

Note! The application has to signed by one’s own hand!

Prior to filling in the application for a residence and work permit get all your employer’s data (Business name/Name, Surname, address of registered office or residence address, NIP, REGON, KRS or PESEL numbers), ID copies if the employer is a natural person, and settle the employment terms (including the type of contract, the remuneration). Apart from that, in case of a residence and work permit it is necessary to obtain a starost’s opinion from the employer. More on this subject can be read in the article: Legal work.

Submitting an application

While submitting an application it should be remembered to attach documents without formal faults – only then you will receive a stamp and the proceedings will be initiated. Make sure that you get the stamp in time (before the lapse of a visa or temporary residence card validity date at the latest)!

Cudzoziemiec ma obowiązek oddania odcisków palców w trakcie postępowania o udzielenie zezwolenia na pobyt czasowy.

A foreigner is obliged to give fingerprints in the proceedings on granting a temporary residence permit. Note! A foreigner will be refused the initiation of proceedings on granting a temporary residence permit if, on submitting an application for a residence permit, he did not have his fingerprints taken for the purpose of issuing a residence card in spite of being obliged to comply with this requirement (article 99 section 1 point 11).

Note! A foreigner above 6 years of age has to appear in person while submitting the application.

Supplementing an application

Information on the need to supplement an application may be sent in a letter. Make sure that you have a key to your mailbox, check it regularly, and if an advice notice appears, go to the post office to collect the letter. Formal defects have to be removed within 7 days of the day of receiving summons to complete the application. Remember, that all documents submitted to the Department for Foreigners for the purpose of residence legalisation have to be written in Polish language. Documents drawn up in another language have to be translated into Polish language by a sworn translator. List of sworn translators. Documents should be submitted as copies with the originals for perusal.


Four photos which you attach to the application have to be in colour, undamaged, 45x35 mm in dimension, taken within the previous 6 months, with a homogeneous light background, in focus and clearly show eyes and face from the top of the head to the upper part of shoulders; the face has to take up 70-80% of the photo; the photo should present a person looking straight ahead with open eyes not obscured by hair, with a natural look on his face and with the mouth closed.

A foreigner with a congenital or gained faults of the organ of sight may attach a photo of himself in spectacles with dark lenses. In such case, documents certifying having a disability or the foreigner’s statement on having a disability if he does not have such a certificate. should be attached to the application.

A foreigner wearing headwear according to rules of his denomination may attach a photo in  headwear as long as his entire face is visible. In such a case the foreigner’s statement on being a member of a given religious community has to be attached to the application.

Passport copy

Two copies of all passport pages with information on them (including all visas, stamps, notes) have to be submitted to the Voivode of Mazowieckie Province. If you are submitting an application in another province, check the requirements of the local office. It may so happen that a voivode requires a copy of all passport pages (regardless of whether they are empty or not).

Starost’s information

If they are required, then a job market test or information from a starost adequate to a foreigner's place of work on the impossibility to satisfy staffing needs of an entity entrusting work to a foreigner, based on the register of persons unemployed and seeking work or based on a negative result of recruitment organised for the employer, have to be issued no earlier than 180 days before submitting the application. You should try to get these documents at least a month in advance of the intended day of submitting an application for a temporary residence and work permit (the job market test alone takes minimum 14 and maximum 21 days to complete, it is also necessary to take into account the time needed to collect documents from a labour office or to send them by post). Note! This document is submitted in original.

Contract with an employer

Before signing a contract check all information included within:

  • The employer’s data
  • The employee’s data
  • Whether conditions included in the contract comply with your work permit, the statement on the intent to entrust work to a foreigner or with the starost’s information:
    • Type of contract
    • Position
    • Work commencement and termination date
    • Value of remuneration

Remember, that if the contract stipulates that the employer provides accommodation for the employee – it is part of his remuneration and entails additional payment of premiums and tax on the market lease value of the accommodation.

To get a temporary residence and work permit, your monthly remuneration cannot be lower than 543 PLN net/month, and if you have a spouse or a minor dependent child in Poland – 457 PLN net per each dependent person..

Documents confirming having accommodation (e.g. a certificate of registered residence, an apartment tenancy agreement, an agreement of lending for use or a statement of a person having the right to use an apartment on giving accommodation to a foreigner).

Upon executing a lease agreement or a lending for use agreement, make sure that the landlord is actually the owner of the apartment or that he is authorised to sublease the apartment. It can be verified by obtaining the number of the land and mortgage register of the apartment and by checking on the Ministry of Justice website or by presenting an authorisation to sublease the apartment signed by the apartment’s owner. It is worth including the number of the land and mortgage register in the wording of an agreement.

PIT tax declaration for the previous year

While submitting a PIT tax declaration for the previous year to the application, a confirmation of the document’s submission in an Inland Revenue Office has to be submitted as well. It may be, for example a confirmation from an Inland Revenue Office of receiving the document, a proof of sending if the PIT was sent by post or an electronic printout if you sent the PIT by electronic means.

Certificate of not being in arrears with tax payments

This document can be obtained in an Inland Revenue Office adequate to the place of residence. Such a certificate can be issued even if you do not have a NIP or a PESEL number yet. This document is submitted in original

Confirmation of having health insurance

If a foreigner performs work under a mandate contract or an employment contract – the confirmation of insurance will be ZUS RCA or a proof of ZUS transfers.

When a foreigner works under a contract for specific work, such confirmation of health insurance may be an insurance policy covering treatment costs. Such a policy can by acquired abroad, however, it should be remembered that – like with other documents – it needs a Polish sworn translation. The cost of buying insurance in Poland is usually lower than the cost of a sworn translation of insurance bought abroad.

Document certifying university admission

A document certifying university admission should include the university's data, the student's data, information on the type of studies, studies commencement and end date, the conditions of study – paid or non-paid studies – and the value of a semester fee. This document is submitted in original. While filling in the certificate it is worth using a template, prepared by the Minister of Science and Higher Education.

Course of procedure

During the proceedings you may be visited at home by representatives of a Province Office, the Police or the Board Guard. If they do not find you at home – they may ask you to contact them and to appear personally.
A voivode should inform a party of the day when the proceedings will end (even when the proceedings will be extended).

Performing work during proceedings (after the expiration of a visa/card)

Remember, that you can commence work only when you jointly meet 3 criteria:

  • You reside within the territory of the Republic of Poland on the basis of a residence title authorising you to perform work,
  • You hold a permit or another adequate document allowing you to perform work,
  • You have signed a contract with an employer in compliance with this permit.

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