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Complete guide to getting Polish citizenship through each available pathways

Poland is a very economically developed country, offering many benefits, including high salaries, low housing prices, and low taxes. In addition to being in the EU, it is also a perfect place to live in when it comes to affordable living conditions.

So, no wonder, Polish citizenship is coveted by many. However, whether you are eligible for Polish citizenship depends on many factors, such as how long you have been living in Poland as an expatriate or your ancestry.

How to Get Polish Citizenship?

Poland offers many opportunities when it comes to obtaining citizenship as a foreigner. Amongst the many options, you can get Polish citizenship:

  • By marriage to a Polish citizen. If you lived in Poland for at least two years on a permanent residence permit, and have been married to a Polish citizen for at least three years.
  • By naturalization. If you lived in Poland consecutively for at least three years with a permanent residence permit, you can apply for citizenship via naturalization.
  • By descent. If your parents, grandparents, or great-grandparents have Polish citizenship, you are entitled to apply for Polish citizenship.
  • By investment. If you are a businessman who invests in Poland, you are entitled to obtain a residence permit and then Polish citizenship.
  • By the power of law. The most suitable option for minors whose parents are of Polish origin and can automatically acquire Polish citizenship.

Poland Citizenship by Naturalization

You can obtain Polish citizenship by naturalization if you fulfill any of the following criteria:

  • You have lived in Poland continuously for at least three years with a permanent residence permit.
  • You have a stable income in Poland.
  • You have been married to your Polish spouse for at least three years.
  • You are under 18 years old.
  • You have a parent who has Polish citizenship.
  • You hold a Poles Card (Karta Polaka).

Poland Citizenship by Descent

You are entitled to Poland citizenship by descent if your parents, grandparents, or great-grandparents were born in Poland. The ancestor needs to fulfill the following requirements:

  • Ancestor should have been born in Poland. 
  • Ancestor should have resided in Poland after 1920.

Poland Citizenship by Investment

The process for getting Investment Polish citizenship is more complicated. If you want to start a business in Poland, you will initially get a temporary residence permit. You must prove that your business has an income of at least €15,000 per year.

If you hold the temporary residence permit for three years, you can apply for the permanent residence permit. After an additional three years of living in Poland with a permanent residence, you can apply for Polish citizenship by naturalization. 

There have been cases in the past where a foreign investor had a great impact on the Polish economy (invested €1M) and the government issued them Polish citizenship by Investment. 

Poland Citizenship by Marriage

If you are a spouse of a Polish citizen you can apply for Poland citizenship by marriage if you:

  1. Have stayed in Poland continuously for at least two years.
  2. Have a residence permit while being married for at least three years 

You can apply for Polish citizenship by marriage at the Foreign Affairs Department and the nearest Voivodeship office or by mail.

For the citizenship by marriage application process, you must submit a valid marriage certificate. The certificate needs to be registered in the Polish Civil Registry office.

Polish Citizenship by the Power of Law

The power of law citizenship is the best option for minors. A minor can be issued Polish citizenship by the power of law, if:

  • At least one parent has Polish citizenship before the birth or
  • They were born in the territory of Poland and their parents have unidentified citizenship.
  • They were found in Poland and the parents are unknown.

How to Apply for Polish Citizenship?

You have to apply for Polish citizenship at the local governor’s office in Poland. Before you submit an application, make sure you meet the citizenship requirements set by the Polish government.

Where to apply? The nearest Polish governor’s office if you live in Poland.
A Polish embassy or consulate if you live abroad.
When to apply? If you fulfill the residency (or other) requirements, you can apply at any time.
How to apply? Contact the governor’s office/consulate abroad to find out the requirements. 
Collect the required documents.
Submit the documents and application for citizenship.
Processing time Up to one year

All required documents must be translated into Polish and legalized before submitting them for your application process. Obtaining Polish citizenship takes time and you are advised to be patient.

Does Poland Allow Dual Citizenship?

Yes, Poland does allow dual citizenship. If you want to have both Polish and foreign citizenship, you need to follow rules, rights, and obligations just like any other Polish citizen. However, you should check if your first citizenship allows dual citizenship as well. Some countries do not allow dual citizenship and therefore you will have to choose which citizenship you would like to keep.

Benefits of Poland Citizenship

Benefits of Poland citizenship include:

  1. Being able to live, work and study in any European country.

Citizens of Poland can visit any European country with no visa. They can also study in any public university for free and apply for jobs in any European country without applying for additional permits.

  1. Having dual citizenship.

Poland allows you to have two citizenships, however, make sure to check beforehand if your first country allows dual citizenship as well.

  1. Access to free health care and insurance.

Poland offers free health care and free health insurance to its citizens, so acquiring Polish citizenship will enable this for you as well.

  1. Access to low-priced housing and high salaries.

Poland is known as an economically developed country and the housing prices and high salaries prove this. Many foreigners are intrigued by these options and pursue Polish citizenship.

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