Insurance in Poland


When crossing the Polish border, an alien driving a car registered outside the EU is required to purchase a civil liability insurance policy, commonly referred to as the “Green Card”.Poland is a member of a wide-ranging international system of such cards. Such insurance can be bought in the traveller's own country, which comes out cheaper than buying it at the border. Insurance policy The "Green Card" is a form of civil protection of a car owner or a person driving it should damage to a third party occur while driving the vehicle. The insurance guarantees that when the damage is done, the insurer, and not the person who caused the accident, will pay out the damages.


Foreigners employed in Poland are bound by the law on social security system dated of 13th October 1998. The law adopted a principle of equal opportunity for all insured people regardless of origins. In practice, this means that the same conditions of obligatory social security apply to employed in Poland for a work contract. Regardless of the origin, everybody all employed on a work contract or a short-term contract in Poland is obliged to have social security insurance. It is important to underline that of all types of work contracts, social insurance does not apply to one-off job contracts ("umowa o dzieł"’).

The obligatory social security contributions consist of four elements: pension fund, retirement, sickness and accident premiums. A part of a the pension premium is accumulated on an employe'’s individual account, as the pension reform of 1999 requires. A part of a retirement premium is destined to secure an individual in the case of an accident " leading to partial or complete disability as resulting from it -" and the inability to work. By paying sickness premiums within the obligatory social security package the employee obtains 80 % of his salary when he falls ill. This is also the basis for paying maternity and child allowance to women. To prevent consequences of an accident or a chronic illness in a the workplace, an accident insurance contributions can also be paid. According to legally biding Polish law, an employer is obliged to report all hired employees for social insurance, and also to pay all social insurance contributions from the first day of an employee’s work agreement until the last day of his or her work.

On the basis of bilateral agreements between Poland and given countries, an insured person whose social insurance contributions have been paid in Poland will receive a pension from the Polish state. The amount of the pension will depend on the level of income and employment time in Poland.

Note! After Poland's accesion to the EU, the Polish pension and social security system are subject to the principles of co-ordination of social security systems of member states. This will mean in practice that the payout of social contributions will be determined by the country where an employee paid his or her contributions. Pensions and other contributions will be paid out according to the internal regulations of a country where an employee has worked the longest. It will not matter what his or her current country of residence is.


Health care in Poland is financed by a central state budget created to protect health, the National Health Fund (NFZ). A health premium, alongside with a social insurance premium, are obliged to be paid for on-going work, i.e.

if the payee has a permanent work contract or remains in a work relationship performing specific assignments. It also concerns foreigners employed in Poland. As in the case of the obligatory social insurance it is paid by the employer.

Those insured in the National Health Service have the right to medical care which ensures health protection, disease and contusions prevention, early detection of illnesses as well as preventing disability it.

Thus those foreigners employed in Poland have almost the entire range of medical services ensured, alongside with specialist hospital treatment, surgical operations and stays in sanatoria. Medical insurance also covers emergency medical care, which ensures transportation to hospital.

As well as foreigners who have to pay a medical health insurance and can use the services of the state health service because they are employed on work contracts or work on assignment, there is another category who can choose whether they want to enter the health service fund.

Among those who have the right to access the fund, the law lists foreigners remaining in Poland on the basis of:

stay visa to perform work,
residence permits,
temporary residence permits,
refugee status granted in Poland,
temporary protection on Polish territory.
Additionally, non-obligatory insurance can be paid by:

undergraduate- and post-graduate students who study in Poland,
graduates who are on obligatory itinerary in Poland,
members of convents and alumni of theological seminaries, postulants, novice and juniors of convents and counterparts in Poland on the basis of visas, residence permits or temporary residence permits.
Health insurance also covers the members of families of the listed groups staying in Poland.

People who want to use public health service are obliged to present a medical insurance card. If they want to arrange a visit with a specialist they have to be directed by a general practitioner. In a state directly threatening life or for women in labour, medicals care is provided without this requirement.

NB! It is important to pay attention whether a medical centre for specialist care has signed an agreement with a state health fund concerning this service. After Poland's accession to the EU, all the citizens of member states in emergencies will have the right to free medical services on the same conditions as Polish citizens. Nevertheless, following the regulations of medical services co-ordination in the EU, every foreigner entering Poland should have an E-111 form which will guarantee them access to medical services.

Alongside public health care centres in Poland are private health centres. Especially in the bigger cities, there are medical doctors of almost all specialities as well as clinics where specialist surgeries and operations can be performed.

NB! When there is a need to use the services of state medical centres, those not having medical insurance can use them and will have to cover the costs themselves. That includes one-off visits at a specialist doctor and hospital care. It is important to know that fees for state medical care are also significantly lower than those in the private sector.