Labour law

Each investor who wants to commence business activity in Poland, thus to have employees, should comply with provisions of the Polish labour law, in particular with the main source of labour law – the Labour code.

According to the Labour Code employment may be commenced based on an employment contract, appointment, election or cooperative employment contract, however, employment contract is the most popular form of cooperation.



Employment for a trial period

  • Allows employing a person in order to try his or her professional qualifications, skills and suitability for work.
  • May precede conclusion of any other employment agreement.
  • May be concluded only once between an employer and an employee for a maximum period of 3 months.


Employment agreement for a definite period of time

Duration of such agreement must be very clearly defined. Changes in the Labour Code that became effective in 2016 provide for the maximum duration of such agreement of 33 months, and the maximum number of agreements between the same parties to the employment is 3. Conclusion of the fourth definite period agreement or exceeding of the admissible period means, in terms of legal consequences, conclusion of an employment agreement for indefinite period time. Since 22 February 2016 the unified 2-week notice period has been replaced with a notice period of 2 weeks, 1 months and 3 months.


Substitution agreements

Is a special employment agreement concluded for a definite period of time, concluded to substitute for an absent employee.


Employment agreement for indefinite period of time

Is the most beneficial form of employment for employees, as it provides the best protection of employment to the employee and the widest scope of court’s control of a termination notice.




  • the minimum monthly salary in 2017 amounts to PLN 2000 gross for full-time work;
  • is paid for performed work, however, the Polish labour law provides also for remuneration despite non-performance of work, e.g. for a given time of being sick or in other way being incapable to work;
  • should be paid in arrears, at least once a month, on fixed dates, not later than by 10th day of the following calendar month;
  • employees cannot waive remuneration.

WypoczynekProvisions of the labour law guarantee time off work on a daily and weekly basis, specifying in particular:

  • maximum working time (8 hours a day and 40 hours a week) in the average 5-day working week in the settlement period adopted by the employer basically not longer than 4 months;
  • daily (11 hours) and weekly (35 hours) of ongoing time off work;
  • limitations and bans to employ people for work in overtime and at night;
  • the right of employees to annual ongoing paid vacation employees cannot waive and which is 20 or 26 days, depending on the seniority of a given employee.

RownowagaEmployees should be treated equally in the scope of:

  • commencing and terminating employment;
  • terms and conditions of employment;
  • being promoted and having access to trainings in order to increase professional qualifications;
  • in particular due to sex, age, disability, race, religion, nationality, political beliefs, being a member of trade unions, ethical background, religious denomination;
  • sexual orientation, as well as notwithstanding employment for definite or indefinite period of time or being a full-time or part-time employee.

Zwiazki zawodoweEstablishing trade unions

  • The main rule of labour law is that employees have a right to establish and join organizations whose aim is to represent and protect their rights and interest.
  • Such organizations include first of all trade unions.

Special protection of durability of employment in the case of particular groups of employees

  • Special protection regards employees being the pre-retirement age, pregnant women or employees using parental leaves, as well as members of trade unions.
  • Special protection may include limitation of the possibility to terminate employment through notice, as well as termination of the terms and conditions of employment and remuneration.

In cases provided for in the provisions of law employers may also be obliged to introduce:

  • regulations of work;
  • regulations of remuneration;
  • regulations of the company’s social benefits fund.


Employment relation based in agreements specified in the Labour code is different from employment relations concluded based on civil-law based agreements which are not subject to regulations of the labour law and do not have the privileges specified therein. In particular there are:

Contract of mandate

  • Regards entrusting to the contractor performance of particular tasks or activities for the benefit of the mandator (agreement of a duty of care).

 Contract of specific work

  • Regards obligation of the contractor to perform the contracted result of work for the benefit of the ordering party in exchange for remuneration (agreement of the result).
  • Does not create a permanent relation between the parties, nor subordination of the contractor in the course of work, moreover, does not entitle the contractor to vacation, sick leaves, disability pension, pension, etc.

Notwithstanding the name given to a given legal relation, employment relation occurs whenever the following occurs:

  • Work is performed in person.
  • Work is performed upon remuneration.
  • Employee performs work under management of the employer.
  • Employee performs work in place and time designated by the employer.

Additionally, Labour Code specifies in a wide and sufficient manner both obligations of the employer and obligations of the employee.

How we can assist you?

  • Choice of the best legal form – contact us for additional information on the legal forms of employment.
  • On-going labour law advisory – conducting business in Poland requires knowledge of local labour law regulations. To establish the optimal structure of employment we can provide you with a list of selected advisors that can support you.

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