Instructions for foreigners

INSTRUCTION FOR FOREIGNERS
General issues
Applications and requests in matters concerning legalisation of the foreigners' stay on the territory of Republic of Poland should be drawn up in Polish. Application for granting a visa by a consul may be drawn up in a foreign language indicated by the consul.
Documents drawn up in a foreign language, used as evidence in the proceedings performed according to the Act on Aliens of 13 June 2006 (Dz.U. of 2006 no 234 item 1694 as amended), should be submitted together with their translation into the Polish language, effected by a sworn translator.

A matter requiring explanatory proceedings should be settled within a month at latest and particularly complicated matter - not later than within two months of the proceedings start, while under appeal proceedings - within a month of the date of the appeal receipt.
The decision on granting a settlement permit or a long-term resident's EC residence permit is rendered within 3 months from the date of instituting proceedings, and under appeal proceedings - within 2 months from the date of the appeal receipt.
In each case a matter is not settled in the above term, authority of first or second instance is obliged to notify you on the reasons of delay and to appoint a new date of the matter settlement.

All the letters (notifications, summons, decisions, resolutions etc.) are delivered by registered mail upon receipt or by officials of the authority of first or second instance.
Letters are delivered to the address indicated by you or to your legal agent if you have appointed one.

When it is impossible to deliver a letter to you or an adult household member, it is placed in the post office for 7 days and a notification on this fact is placed in your mailbox or, if it is impossible, on the door of the addressee's flat door. A letter is considered delivered on the last day of this period.

You are obliged to confirm the letter receipt with your signature indicating the delivery date. In the case you evade delivery confirmation, the deliverer will indicate the date of delivery as well as the person that received the letter and the reason of lack of signature.
If you refuse to receive a letter sent to you by Post or delivered in any other way, the letter will be returned to the sender with a note on the refusal of receipt and its date. In such a case the letter is regarded delivered on the date of refusal of its receipt by the addressee.

The authority carrying out the proceedings are notified on each change of place of residence. During the proceedings letters are always sent at address for service that had for the last time been indicated to the authority in question.
In the case of going abroad you are obliged to indicate an address for service in Poland.

If your address has changed, and an authority carrying out the proceedings has not been notified on this, a letter is sent to the last address for service indicated by you. A letter sent in such way is also effectively delivered if you do not reside at the indicated address and for that reason you have not taken note of the letter content.
If you do not reside at the address indicated and if it is impossible to deliver the letter upon receipt to an adult household member or another person residing or staying at the address indicated that would undertake the delivery of the letter to the addressee, the letter returned to the sender is considered delivered on the day of making an attempt to deliver the letter.

Failure to notify on the change of place of residence may result in serious consequences, for example:
• your application will be left unconsidered,
• decision of a competent authority may become irrevocable if, because of the failure to notify of address change, you do not comply with the term of appeal against the decision of authority of first instance or with the term of lodging a complaint against the decision of authority of second instance in the Administrative Court.

The authority carrying out the proceedings collects a stamp duty for issuing a residence permit.
The obligation to pay a stamp duty arises at the moment of submitting an application for any of permits for residence within the territory of the Republic of Poland. Stamp duty is paid onto the account indicated by the authority carrying out the proceedings.
In the case of issuing a decision on refusal to grant a resident permit you should apply for return of the paid stamp duty. Stamp duty will not be returned after five years of the end of the year in which the payment was effected.
A stamp duty of PLN 205 is collected for the extension of a short-stay visa, and a stamp duty of PLN 406 is collected for the extension of a long-stay visa.
A stamp duty of PLN 340 is collected for issuing a residence permit for a fixed period and a stamp duty of 640 is collected for issuing a settlement permit and a residence permit for a long-term EC resident.
A stamp duty of PLN 17 is collected for a document confirming granting authorisation.
If you do not pay the duty while submitting the application, the authority carrying out the proceedings will appoint the term of effecting the payment. The term may not be less than 7 days and must not exceed 14 days. If the payment is not effected within the appointed term, the application is returned.

The authority of the first and second instance may call you to turn up personally before the decision is issued in order to clarify relevant circumstances necessary to make the decision.

Special attention must be paid to instruction on measures of appeal attached to each decision, including indicated deadlines. Only before these deadlines can you appeal against the decision of the authority of first instance, or lodge a complaint in Administrative Court against the decision of the authority of second instance

Your personal data may be transmitted to competent authorities of other members of the European Union in accordance with legal provisions effective within this scope.

Visas
A foreigner may cross the border and stay on the territory of the Republic of Poland if he/she is in possession of a valid travel document and a visa, unless the Act provides otherwise.

You may apply for a uniform stay visa if you plan to enter the territory of Schengen states and stay there for less than three months. Visa application should be submitted at the consul's office.
If circumstances of the planned stay on the territory of the Republic of Poland relating to a visit, carrying out economic or cultural activity, participation in international conferences, performing official duties by representatives of a foreign country body or an international organisation, participation in granting asylum proceedings, work, stay for scientific, educational or didactic purposes, stay under temporary protection, as well as participation in cultural or educational exchange programme or students' holiday work require that the stay last longer that 3 months, you may apply for a national stay visa, the stay period of which will be established according the purpose of stay indicated by you. A national stay visa may not be issued for a period of stay exceeding 1 year.

You may apply for a visa if you have a valid travel document, the validity period of which exceeds visa validity period, authorising you to return to your country of origin or to leave for third country.
A national visa is placed in a travel document, if the validity period of the travel document is longer by at least 3 months than the period within which you have to leave the Republic of Poland according to the issued visa.
A stay visa authorises to one, two, or more entries into the territory of the Republic of Poland and staying there within the period of stay indicated in the visa.

Apart from indicating the stay period, a visa validity period is also determined and it cannot be longer than 5 years. The first entrance may take place and the last departure from the Republic of Poland must take place during this period. The number of entrances into the Republic of Poland allowed within the period of stay is also indicated in visa.
The period of visa validity should begin no later than 3 months from the date of a visa issuance.

The authority competent for issuing visas is a consul.
The authority competent for extending the visa period is a voivode competent for a foreigner's place of residence.
Authority competent for issuing visas in the course of Article 33 (1) of the Act on Aliens is the Head of the Office for Foreigners.

A foreigner must leave the territory of the Republic of Poland before the expiry of the period of stay indicated in visa and before the expiry of visa validity period unless s/he has been granted a visa period extension or a residence permit for a fixed period, or a settlement permit or a residence permit for a long-term EC resident within the territory of the Republic of Poland.

Within at least 7 days before the expiry of period of stay based on the issued short-stay visa (14 days before the expiry of period of stay based on a long-stay visa) you may apply for visa extension to a voivode competent for your place of residence. The visa period may be extended only if the following conditions are satisfied:
• - it is essential for your important professional or personal interest or humanitarian reasons,
• - events which are the reason for visa period extension have happened independently of your will and cannot have been foreseen in the moment of visa issuance,
• - the case circumstances do not indicate that the purpose of your stay will be different than declared,
• - there are no circumstances justifying denial of visa issuance.
The period of stay on the territory of Republic of Poland based on the extended visa may not be longer than the residence period according to, respectively, short-stay or long-stay visa.

If an application for visa period extension has not been submitted in the above mentioned term and proceedings do not finish before the visa validity period expiry, you will be obliged to leave the Republic of Poland and await the decision abroad.

National stay visas with work permit entitle you to stay and work in the Republic of Poland.
The visas are issued by a consul competent for your place of permanent residence against a promise of work permit in the Republic of Poland presented by you or against a document proving that such a permit is not required.
The visas are issued for a period of stay which corresponds with the period indicated in the promise or declaration, but no longer than one year.

A foreigner that plans to carry out work depending on the seasons of the year cycle for a determined period in the Republic of Poland receives a national stay visa with work permit for a residence period that corresponds with the period indicated in the work permit issuance promise, but no longer than 6 months within 12 months of the day of the first entrance.

If you plan to carry out work in the Republic of Poland for a period longer than 3 months, and you receive a work permit issuance promise, you may apply via a consul if you are abroad, or directly to a voivode for a residence permit for a fixed period.

Even if there arise circumstances on the basis of which a foreigner should be refused visa, s/he may receive a stay visa in the course of Article 33 (1) of the Act on Aliens, if:
1) provisions of the Polish law require that a foreigner should appear in person before a Polish body of public authority;
2) his/her entry into the territory of the Republic of Poland is indispensable because of the necessity to undergo medical treatment to rescue directly his/her life, which h/she cannot undergo in another country;
3) there is an extraordinary personal situation requiring his/her presence in the Republic of Poland;
4) it is required by the interest of the Republic of Poland;
5) there is a justified assumption that a foreigner is a victim of trafficking in human beings within the meaning of Council Framework Decision of 19 July 2002 on combating trafficking in human beings (OJ L 203, 1.8.2003), confirmed by an authority competent to carry out proceedings concerning combating trafficking in human beings.
In the case of such circumstances you may receive a visa for 3 months at most.
An application for such a visa should be submitted via a consul or to a voivode competent for the place of your residence.

Staying in the Republic of Poland without required visa, residence permit for a fixed period, settlement permit or residence permit for a long-term EC resident, as well as carrying out work or business activity against provisions in force means the risk of extradition from the Republic of Poland and lack of possibility of entry within the period of 3 to 5 years.

Residence permit for a specified period of time
You can apply for residence permit for a specified period of time if circumstances justifying residence in the Republic of Poland for a period longer than 3 months occur.. Such circumstances are:
• 1) acquiring a promise or extension of promise for issuance of a job permit or a written statement by the employer that a foreigner will be entrusted with performance of work, if job permit is not required,
• 2) conduct of economic activities on ground of regulations binding in Republic of Poland, which are beneficial to national economy, and in particular contribute to growth of investments, transfer of technology, implementation of profitable innovations or creation of new jobs,
• 3) continuation of artistic activities in the Republic of Poland by a foreigner with recognised achievements,
• 4) participation in professional trainings and probation carried out within UE programmes,
• 5) the intention of family members to reside together with a migrating employee referred to in the European Social Charter signed in Turin on 18 October 1961. (Dz.U. of 1999 No 8, Item 67),
• 6) marriage with a Polish citizen,
7) intention to enter as foreigner's family member referred to in Article 54 of the Act on Aliens of 13 June 2003 into the territory of the Republic of Poland or staying in this territory in order to reunite with the family;
8) residence in the territory of Poland of foreigner's minor child that was born in this territory and remains without custody;
9) spouse or an adult child of a foreigner referred to in Article 54 of the Act on Aliens, staying in the Republic of Poland for at least 5 years on the basis of settlement permits or residence permits for a fixed period, granted due to circumstances referred to in point 7;
10) staying in the Republic of Poland on the basis of settlement permit or residence permit for a fixed period, granted due to circumstances referred to in point 7 in the case of becoming a widow or a widower, divorce, separation, death of ascendant or descendant of the first degree, if particularly important interest of a foreigner is at stake;
11) staying in the Republic of Poland on the basis of residence permit for a specified period, granted due to circumstances referred to in point 6 in the case of becoming a widow or a widower or divorce, if particularly important interest of a foreigner is at stake;
12) being a minor child of a foreigner with a residence permit for a fixed period, born in the Republic of Poland;
13) possession of a residence permit for a long-term EC resident, issued by another UE Member State and intention to perform work or economic activities on ground of regulations within this area effective in the Republic of Poland, taking up or continuation of studies or vocational training or demonstration that other circumstances justifying his residence in territory of Poland occur;
14) accompanying or intention to unite as a family member with a foreigner referred to in point 13, with whom the family member stayed on the territory of another European Union Member State;
15) being a victim of trafficking in human beings in the meaning of Council Framework Decision of 19 July 2002 on combating trafficking in human beings if a foreigner:
a) resides in the Republic of Poland,
b) has undertaken collaboration with an authority competent for carrying out proceedings concerning trafficking in human beings,
c) has given up contacts with persons suspected of offences related to trafficking in human beings;
16) arriving in the Republic of Poland or staying in its territory in order to take up or continue higher or doctoral studies in the territory of the Republic of Poland, further referred to as studies, also in the case of taking up studies in the territory of another European Union country which are to be continued or complemented in the Republic of Poland;
17) being a scientist arriving in the Republic of Poland or staying in its territory in order to carry out scientific research based on an agreement of employment for a research project implementation, concluded with a scientific institution approved by a minister competent for science;
18) possession of a residence permit referred to in Article 1 (2) (a) of the Council Regulation (EC) no 1030/2002 of 13 June 2002 laying down a uniform format for residence permits for third-country nationals (OJ L 137, 15.6.2002, p. 1-7) with an annotation "scientist", issued by another European Union Member State, if an agreement of employment in a research project implementation concluded with a competent scientific institution of that country provides for carrying out scientific research also in the territory of the Republic of Poland.

A residence permit for a fixed period may be granted to a foreigner who:
1) intends to begin or continue education or vocational training in the Republic of Poland;
2) due to relationships of family nature intends to join a Polish citizen or a citizen of a European Union Member State, a member-country of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), which is a party to the Agreement on the European Economic Area, or of the Swiss Confederation, residing in the Republic of Poland, or s/he intends to stay with him/her;
3) is a clergyman, a member of an order, or a person performing religious duties in churches and religious associations whose status is regulated by an international agreement, by provisions of acts on relationships between the state and church or another religious association that acts pursuant to an entry to a register of churches and other religious associations, and his/her stay in the Republic of Poland is connected to duties performed by him/her or preparation to their performance;
4) proves that there arise other circumstances than those provided for in points 1-3 or in Article 53(1) of the Act on Aliens.
You may be granted a residence permit for a fixed period if the above circumstances justify your residence in the Republic of Poland for a period longer than 3 months.

A foreigner applying for a residence permit for a fixed period is in principle obliged to have:
- a steady and regular source of income sufficient to cover the costs of living for the applicant and his/her dependant family members and
- a health insurance as understood by provisions on common health insurance or documents confirming that the costs of medical treatment in the Republic of Poland will be covered by an insurer;
These requirements do not apply to spouses of Polish citizens, a minor child of a foreigner having a residence permit for a fixed period and born in the Republic of Poland, foreigners participating in trainings and professional practices within the European Union programmes and victims of trafficking in human beings.
Moreover, a foreigner referred to in the above points 16-18 and a foreigner intending to continue education should have financial resources to cover his/her costs of living and return.

A family member of a foreigner means:
1) a person in a marriage relation with him/her as recognised by the Polish law;
2) a minor child of the foreigner and the person in a marriage relation with him/her as recognised by the Polish law, including an adopted child;
3) a minor child of the foreigner, including an adopted child, dependant on him/her, over which the foreigner performs actual parental custody;
4) a minor child of a person referred to in point 1, including an adopted child, dependant on him/her, over whom s/he performs actual parental custody.
Ascendant of the first degree is also regarded as a family member of an under-age foreigner having a refugee status and staying in the Republic of Poland without custody.

Pursuant to Article 54 of the Act on Aliens, a residence permit for a fixed period in order to reunite with the family is granted to a family member of a foreigner residing in the Republic of Poland:
1) on the basis of a settlement permit;
2) on the basis of a residence permit for a long-term resident's EC;
3) who has been granted a refugee status;
4) at least for two years on the basis of a residence permit for a fixed period, including directly before submitting an application for granting a residence permit for a fixed period for a member of his/her family, on the basis of residence permit granted for at least one year;
5) on the basis of a residence permit for a fixed period referred to in Article 53 (1) (17) and (18) of the Act on Aliens.

If you are staying abroad, an application for a residence permit for a fixed period should be submitted via a consul. If you are staying in Poland, an application should be submitted to a voivode competent for the place of your planned stay.

Applying for a residence permit for a fixed period you are obliged to submit:
• 1) filled-in form of application for residence permit for a fixed period,
• 2) four colour photographs sized 4,5 cm x 3,5 cm, undestroyed, clear, colour, presenting a person without head covering and dark glasses in such a way that the head is shown in left semiprofile, with the left ear visible and the face evenly illuminated,
• 3) documents necessary to prove the data included in the application and circumstances justifying applying for a residence permit for a fixed period,
• 4) confirmation of the stamp duty payment or proof of consular fee payment,
• 5) certificate confirming the registration duty (if an application is submitted to a voivode).
A foreigner applying for a residence permit for a fixed period due to obtaining a promise of a job permit issuance, carrying out business activity, reunion with family and due to 5-year stay in Poland as a foreigner's family member, as well as because of the possessed residence permit for a long-term EC resident in another European Union Member State and accompanying or intending to reunite as a family member with a foreigner having a residence permit for a long-term EC resident in another EU Member state, and a foreigner referred to in Article 53a(1), (2) and (4) of the Act on Aliens is obliged to attach to the application also a legal title to the occupied flat in which s/he resides or plans to reside, as well as documents confirming the volume of living costs.
An agreement for lease of flat in which the foreigner resides or plans to reside is not regarded a legal title, unless the lesser is his/her descendant, ascendant or spouse, the spouse's parents or the foreigner's siblings.
A foreigner applying for a residence permit for a fixed period pursuant to Article 53 (1) (17) and (18) of the Act on Aliens, i.e. a "scientist", is additionally obliged to deliver an agreement of employment in a research project implementation concluded with a scientific institution and a written obligation of the scientific institution to bear the costs of the foreigner's stay and extradition covered from the public money no later than 6 months of the date of the agreement expiry, if the ground for the foreigner's extradition is his/her illegal stay on the territory of Poland.

The residence permit for a fixed period is each time granted for a period necessary to achieve the purpose of a foreigner's stay on the territory of the Republic of Poland, no longer than 2 years.
In the case where the circumstance of application for a residence permit for a fixed period is taking up or continuing studies or vocational training, or performing scientific duties, the permit is granted for one year; or in the case where the circumstance of the application for residence permit for a fixed period justifies the foreigner's residence in Poland for less than one year, the permit is granted for the period necessary to achieve the purpose of the stay.
A foreigner's family member is granted a residence permit for a fixed period up to the date to which the residence permit for a fixed had been granted to the foreigner to which the family member intends to join or has joined to unite with the family, and in the case where the foreigner has a settlement permit, a residence permit for a long-term EC resident or a refugee status granted in the Republic of Poland, the residence permit is granted for 2 years.
A minor child of a foreigner having a residence permit for a fixed period is granted such permit up to the date to which his/her legal representative's permit is valid.
A residence permit for a fixed period is granted for six months to a foreigner who is a victim of trafficking in human beings.

If you are staying in the Republic of Poland, an application for a residence permit for a fixed period should be submitted to a voivode competent for the place of your planned stay at least 45 days before the end of your residence period based on visa or before the end of the period for which your previous residence permit for a fixed period was granted. If the voivode is unable to issue a decision before this deadline you will be granted a visa for the period until the proceedings of the first instance are closed.

If the application is submitted less than 45 days before the end of your stay period based on visa or the end of period for which your previous permit for a fixed period had been granted and the proceedings have not been finished before the end of your residence permit validity period, you are obliged to leave the Republic of Poland and await the decision abroad.. If you fail to leave the Republic of Poland, the voivode is obliged to refuse to issue a residence permit for a fixed period.

The decision on issuing or refusal of the residence permit for a fixed period is issued by a voivode competent for your planned place of residence. A residence card is a document confirming the obtaining of a residence permit for a fixed period.

A stamp duty of PLN 340 is charged for the issuance of residence permit for a fixed period.
A fee of PLN 50 is charged for the issuance of a residence card.

If your application for a residence permit for a fixed period has been submitted abroad, the decision of the voivode will be delivered to you via a consul. In the case of delivering the decision on the issuance of residence permit for a fixed period, a residence visa entitling to the arrival and stay in the Republic of Poland will be issued for you to enable the use of residence permit for a fixed period. A residence card will be issued by a voivode competent for the place of your planned stay.

A foreigner is obliged to receive the residence card personally, and in the case of a minor younger than 13 years of age, the residence card is received by his/her legal representative or legal guardian.
A foreigner is obliged to replace his/her residence card in the following cases:
1) change of data contained in it;
2) change of appearance rendering the identification of the owner difficult;
3) damage of the card to a degree obstructing its use;
4) loss or damage of the card.
A voivode competent for the foreigner's place of residence replaces the card.
A foreigner who has lost the residence card must notify the voivode that issued it within 3 days from the date of the card's loss. In the case the lost residence card is found, the foreigner must notify the voivode within 3 days from the date it was found and immediately return the recovered residence card if a replacement card has already been issued.
A foreigner is obliged to immediately return the residence card to the issuing authority upon delivery of a document confirming acquisition of Polish citizenship or a decision on withdrawal of residence permit for a fixed period.

A foreigner is obliged to leave the territory of the Republic of Poland before the expiry of the validity of the residence permit for a fixed period unless s/he has been granted a successive residence permit for a fixed period, a settlement permit or a residence permit for a long-term EC resident.
Staying in the Republic of Poland without required visa, residence permit for a fixed period, settlement permit or a residence permit for a long-term EC resident, as well as carrying out work or business activity against provisions in force means the risk of extradition from the Republic of Poland and lack of possibility of entry within the period of 3 to 5 years.

Settlement permit
Settlement permit is granted upon application to a foreigner that:
1) is a minor child of a foreigner with a settlement permit, born in the Republic of Poland;
9) has been married to a Polish citizen for at least 3 years before submitting the application and directly before submitting the application has been continuously staying in the Republic of Poland for at least 2 years on the basis of residence permit for a fixed period;
3) directly before submitting the application has been continuously staying in the Republic of Poland for at least 10 years upon a permit for tolerated stay or for at least 5 years due to acquiring a refugee status;
4) is a child of a Polish citizen and remains under his/her custody.

The stay in the Republic of Poland is regarded continuous if any absence period did has not exceeded 6 months and total absence has not exceeded 10 months unless it was caused by:
• 1) performance of professional duties or performance of work outside the territory of the Republic of Poland upon a contract concluded with an employer whose registered office is located in the territory of the Republic of Poland;
• 2) accompanying spouse performing his/her professional duties or work in circumstances referred to in point (1);
• 3) medical treatment of a foreigner.

A settlement permit is granted for an indefinite period.
As of the date a foreigner acquires a residence permit for a long-term EC resident, his/her settlement permit expires.
A foreigner may submit a settlement permit application during his/her legal stay in the Republic of Poland.

A foreigner staying in the Republic of Poland upon a visa referred to in Article 33 of the Act on Aliens or a detained foreigner, placed in guarded centre, in detention with an expulsion order, with regard to whom a preventive measure in the form of prohibition to leave the country or deprival of freedom as a result of execution of sentences issued upon legal Acts cannot submit a settlement permit application. If such an application is submitted, it is left unconsidered.
In the case when, before the expiry of foreigner's legal stay in Poland no final decision on issuance of a settlement permit has been made, a voivode issues stay visas for the foreigner until final decision is made.

Applying for a settlement permit you are obliged to submit:
• 1) filled-in form of application for settlement permit,
• 2) four colour photographs sized 4,5 cm x 3,5 cm, undestroyed, clear, colour, presenting a person without head covering and dark glasses in such a way that the head is shown in left semiprofile, with the left ear visible and the face is evenly illuminated,
• 3) documents necessary to confirm data contained in the application and circumstances justifying application for settlement permit,
• 4) confirmation of stamp duty payment.
5) legal title to the occupied flat in which you reside or plan to reside as well as documents confirming the volume of living costs.
An agreement for lease of flat in which the foreigner resides or plans to reside is not regarded a legal title, unless the lesser is his/her descendant, ascendant or spouse, the spouse's parents or the foreigner's siblings.

The decision on issuing or refusal of the settlement permit is issued by a voivode competent for your planned place of residence.
A residence card is a document confirming the obtaining of a settlement permit.

A stamp duty of PLN 640 is charged for the issuance of settlement permit.
A fee of PLN 50 is charged for the issuance of a residence card.

A foreigner is obliged to receive the residence card personally, and in the case of a minor younger than 13 years of age, the residence card should be received by his/her legal representative or legal guardian.
A foreigner is obliged to replace his/her residence card in the following cases:
1) change of data contained in it;
2) change of appearance making identification of the owner difficult;
3) damage of the card to a degree obstructing its use;
4) expiry of validity of residence card issued due to acquisition of a settlement permit;
5) loss or damage of the card.
A voivode competent for the foreigner's place of residence replaces the card.
A foreigner who has lost the residence card must notify the voivode that issued it within 3 days from the date of the card's loss. In the case the lost residence card is found, the foreigner must notify the voivode within 3 days from the date it was found and immediately return the recovered residence card if a replacement card has already been issued.
A foreigner is obliged to immediately return the residence card to the issuing authority upon delivery of a document confirming the acquisition of Polish citizenship or a decision on withdrawal of settlement permit.

Residence permit for a long-term EC resident
A foreigner with a residence permit for a long-term EC resident in one of EU Member States has the right to acquire a temporary residence permit in another EU Member State provided that there are circumstances justifying his residence in such country and s/he has stable and regular income and health insurance. This concerns also family members of a foreigner.
Residence permit for a long-term EC resident is issued upon an application submitted by a foreigner who, directly before submitting an application, was legally and continuously residing in Poland for at least 5 years and who has:
• 1) steady and regular source of income sufficient to cover the costs of living for the applicant and his/her dependant family members;
• 2) health insurance as understood by provisions on common health insurance or documents confirming that the costs of medical treatment in the Republic of Poland will be covered by an insurer;

Residence permit for long-term EC resident cannot be granted to a foreigner that:
• 1) is staying in the republic of Poland to complete studies or vocational training;
• 2) has a permit for tolerated stay, political asylum, refugee status granted in the Republic of Poland or who is subject to temporary protection;
• 3) applies for a refugee status or political asylum;
• 4) is an „au pair" employee or a seasonal employee delegated by provider of services to render trans-border services or a trans-border services provider;
• 5) resides in the Republic of Poland upon visa referred to in Article 33 of the Act on Aliens or upon a residence permit for a fixed period granted upon Article 53 (1) (5) or (7) of the Act on Aliens;
• 6) has been detained, placed in a guarded centre, in detention with expulsion order, against whom preventive measure in the form of prohibition to leave the country or deprival of freedom in spite of execution of sentences issued upon legal Acts have been administered.

The 5-year period which determines granting a residence permit for EC long-term resident does not include the stay of a foreigner that:
• 1) has been detained, placed in a guarded centre, in detention with expulsion order, against whom preventive measure in form of prohibition to leave the country or deprival of freedom in spite of execution of sentences issued upon legal Acts have been administered;
• 2) is an „au pair" employee or a seasonal employee delegated by provider of services to render trans-border services or a trans-border services provider;
• 3) resides upon a visa referred to in Article 33 or upon residence permit for a fixed period granted pursuant to Article 53 (1) (5) or (7);
• 4) is a head, member of a diplomatic mission staff, manager of a consular office or a consular staff member of a foreign country as well as another person of equal status pursuant to legal Acts, agreements or commonly established international practices.

The 5-year period which determines granting a residence permit for EC long-term resident includes half of the foreigner's residence period based on visa or residence permit for a fixed period granted due to studies or vocational training.

The stay in the Republic of Poland is regarded continuous if any absence period has not exceeded 6 months and total absence has not exceeded 10 months unless it was caused by:
1) performance of professional duties or performance work outside the territory of the Republic of Poland upon a contract concluded with an employer whose registered office is located in the territory of the Republic of Poland;
2) accompanying spouse performing his/her professional duties or work in circumstances referred to in point (1);
3) medical treatment of a foreigner.

Residence permit for a long-term EC resident is granted for an unlimited period.
As of the date a foreigner obtains a residence permit for a long-term EC resident, his/her settlement permit expires.

A foreigner may submit an application for residence permit for a long-term EC resident during his/her legal stay in the Republic of Poland, with reservation for cases stated hereunder:
In the case when, before the expiry of the foreigner's legal stay in Poland, no final decision on issuance of a residence permit for a long-time EC resident has been made, a voivode issues stay visas for the foreigner until final decision is made.
A foreigner staying in the Republic of Poland upon a visa referred to in Article 33 of the Act on Aliens or a detained foreigner, placed in guarded centre, in detention with an expulsion order, with regard to which a preventive measure in form of prohibition to leave the country or deprival of freedom as a result of execution of sentences issued upon legal Acts, as well as a foreigner referred to in Article 65 (2)(1-4) and a foreigner staying in Poland upon residence permit for a fixed period granted pursuant to Article 53(1)(5) or (7) cannot submit an application for residence permit for a long-time EC resident.
An application in such a case also cannot be submitted by a foreigner completing studies or vocational training, with a tolerated residence permit, political asylum, refugee status granted in the Republic of Poland or who is subject to temporary protection, applying for a refugee status or political asylum, an "au pair" employee, seasonal employee delegated by provider of services to render trans-border services or trans-border services provider, as well aw a foreigner residing in the Republic of Poland upon a residence permit for a fixed period issued upon Article 53(1) (5) or (7) of the Act on Aliens.
If an application for residence permit for a long-term EC resident is submitted in the aforementioned cases it is left unconsidered.

Applying for a residence permit for a long-term EC resident you must submit:.
1) filled-in form of application for residence permit for a long-term EC resident,
2) four colour photographs sized 2,5 cm x 4,5 cm, undestroyed, clear, colour, presenting a person without head covering and dark glasses in such a way that the head is shown in left semiprofile, with the left ear visible and the face is evenly illuminated,
3) documents necessary to confirm data included in the application and circumstances justifying application for residence permit for a long-term EC resident,
4) confirmation of stamp duty payment,
5) legal title to the occupied flat in which you reside or plan to reside as well as documents confirming the volume of living costs.
An agreement for lease of the flat in which the foreigner resides or plans to reside is not regarded a legal title, unless the lesser is his/her descendant, ascendant or spouse, the spouse's parents or the foreigner's siblings.

The decision on issuing or refusal of the residence permit for a long-term EC resident is issued by a voivode competent for your planned place of residence.
A residence card is a document confirming the obtaining of a residence permit for a long term EC resident.

Stamp duty of PLN 640 is charged for the issuance of a residence permit for a long-term EC resident.
A fee of PLN 50 is charged for the issuance of a residence card.

A foreigner is obliged to receive the residence card personally, and in the case of a minor person younger than 13 years of age the residence card is received by his/her legal representative or legal guardian.
A foreigner is obliged to replace his residence card in the following cases:
1) change of data stated in it;
2) change of appearance making identification of the owner difficult;
3) damage of the card to a degree obstructing its use;
4) the expiry of the validity of the residence card issued due to granting the residence permit for a long-term EC resident;
5) loss or damage of the card.
Voivode competent for the foreigner's place of residence replaces the card.
A foreigner who has lost the residence card must notify the voivode that issued it within 3 days from the date of the card's loss. In the case the lost residence card is found, the foreigner must notify the voivode within 3 days from the date it was found and immediately return the recovered residence card if a replacement card has already been issued.
A foreigner is obliged to immediately return the residence card to the issuing authority upon delivery of a document confirming the acquisition of Polish citizenship or a decision on withdrawal of residence permit for a long-term EC resident.

A residence permit for a long-term EC resident is withdrawn among others if a foreigner has left the Republic of Poland for a period exceeding 6 years, has left the European Union for a period of consecutive 12 months or has acquired a residence permit for a long-term EC resident in another EU Member State.
In the case a residence permit for a long-term EC resident is withdrawn for aforementioned reasons, subsequent residence permit for a long-term EC resident may be granted when a foreigner meets requirements for granting such permit, however s/he must reside legally and continuously for at least 3 years in the Republic of Poland directly before the application is submitted.

source -gov.pl

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