Foreigners’ employment – changes in the law in 2023

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This year, foreigners’ hiring rules will change. The legislator plans some changes in that field. These changes aim to shorten and facilitate the employment process.
The planned changes include the following:

  • counteracting foreigners’ exploitation
  • electrification of proceedings,
  • abolition of the ‘work test’ and the extensions of the work permit.
  • Counteracting foreigners’ exploitation

To prevent foreigners’ exploitation, the Government intends to:

  • Maintain the principle of remuneration comparability for a foreigner. It prevents replacing Polish citizens with cheaper workers from other countries. It is one of the essential legal tools guaranteeing the complementary nature of foreigners’ access to the Polish labour market. Central Database of Job Offers will facilitate verification that the employers don’t lower foreigner’s remuneration.
  • Introduce provisions ensuring that an employer who does not pay compulsory social insurance or income tax advances will not be able to employ foreigners (he will be refused a work permit). The same will happen if the employer gets a penalty for some offences.

Electronic procedures – Obtaining a work permit and accepting a declaration on entrusting work to a foreigner
Foreigners will be employed entirely electronically in the “Sirius” system. Its functionality will extend. Employers hiring foreigners and foreigners working in Poland will have to create an account in this system. The “Sirius” system will allow the employer and the foreigner to contact the work permits authority. The foreigner will check whether there is a favourable decision on a work permit. The work permits will be issued only electronically. Appeal proceedings will also happen electronically.
A salary database will be a part of the ICT system. It will allow for a reliable assessment of whether the remuneration offered to a foreigner is comparable to the one on the local labour market.
It will also provide the first and second-instance authority and control authorities (the National Labour Inspectorate and the Border Guard) with access to the database on decisions to issue or refuse work permits for foreigners. The ICT system will also be combined with a visa, residence permit and border crossing data system.
Owing to the use of those systems, it will be possible to monitor the actual entrustment of work to a foreigner based on the information on the date of entry and departure, the content of the employer’s notifications about taking up or not taking up work, and checking the social security contributions payments. That will allow us to determine whether the job follows the work permit.
The ICT system will automatically download data from the following systems:

  • ZUS – Social Insurance Institution
  • National Tax Administration
  • Border Guard,
  • KRK – National Criminal Register
  • KRS – National Court Register
  • Central Register and Information on Economic Activity
  • KRUS – Agricultural Social Insurance

‘Work test’ and extension of the work permit elimination
Amendments to the Act provide for the resignation from the work test. The employer will no longer have to prove that they cannot meet the staffing needs of the local market to get a work permit.
Therefore, a work permit extension will no longer have a place in the system. So far, if the foreigner continued to work in the same position, the employer that applied for the work permit extension did not have to carry out another “work test”. There will be no test, and the legislator does not provide for a separate procedure for entities continuing cooperation with a foreigner. The draft law maintains the possibility of entrusting work pending the issuance of another work permit for the same position or type of work.

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