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Complete guide to the D visas in Poland, types of long stay visas, and guidelines

A Poland type D visa is also known as a long-stay or national visa. This visa is given to individuals who want to study, work or reside in Poland. If you plan on staying in the Republic of Poland for longer than 90 days, you have to apply for a long-stay visa. 

A Type D national visa also allows you to travel in the territory of other Schengen countries for up to 90 days during a 180-day period.  

The Type D visa is not the same as a residence permit. The long-stay visa allows you to enter Poland with the purpose of work, studies, family reunion, etc. and is acquired at an embassy abroad. You must switch the long-stay visa into a residence permit after entering Poland. Sometimes, you obtain a residence permit at the same time as a long-stay visa.

Who Needs a Type D Visa for Poland?

Citizens who are not from an EU/EEA country and wish to stay in Poland for studying or working must apply for a Poland Type D Visa. If you are a citizen of an EU/EEA country, you do not have to apply for a Type D Visa; however, for an extension of the three-month period, you must register your stay at the local registration office.

Difference Between a Poland Type D Visa and Schengen Visa

The differences between Poland Schengen Visa and a D-Type Long Term Visa are:

Poland Schengen Visa:Poland D-Type Long Term Visa:
Is a short-stay visa Is a long-stay visa 
Your stay cannot exceed three monthsYour stay can last for up to one year
Recommended for travel Recommended if you want to study or work in Poland
You cannot obtain a residence permit if you enter Poland with a Schengen visa.You can obtain a residence permit and extend your stay in Poland for years or indefinitely if you enter with a long-stay visa.
You do not need a strong reason to obtain a Schengen visa for Poland. You need a strong reason to obtain a long-stay visa. It could be a work contract, an acceptance letter from a Polish university, or a close family member.

Poland Type D Visas

The Poland national type D visas are:

  • Poland Work Visa. If you are from a non-EU/EEA country and want to work in Poland, you must apply for a Polish work visa. You must have an employer who will submit a request for a work permit on your behalf at the local Polish Voivodeship. There are different types of work permits depending on the duration and nature of your work, such as:
  • Poland Student Visa. If you are from a non-EU/EEA country and have plans to study in Poland, you must apply for a Polish student visa. If you want to study for longer than one year, you must apply for a student residence permit. This visa application will require you to submit the school or university application and acceptance letter as well as an invitation letter. You will also be required to submit a document proving your English or Polish language proficiency level.
  • Poland Family Visa. If you want to join either your spouse or parents who live in Poland, you have to apply for a Polish family visa. The family visa is valid for two years, and you are allowed to work in Poland during this time. You have to provide proof of your family status, such as a marriage certificate (for spouses) or birth certificate (for biological children).

How to Apply for a Poland Type D Visa?

You have to apply for a Polish long-stay D visa at the nearest Polish consulate or embassy. You must set up an appointment and complete the application form through the E-Konsulat website. Then, you have to:

  1. Collect the required documents. You need a specific set of documents depending on the type of visa you are applying for. For example, for a work visa, you need a work contract.
  2. Submit the application in person at the Polish embassy or consulate. You must show up at the embassy or consulate on the day of your appointment on time.
  3. Attend the visa interview. For a long-stay visa, it is usually required to also enter a visa interview, where the visa officer will ask you questions about your trip.
  4. Wait for the decision. You will usually hear back within two weeks.

Duration of a Poland D Visa

The Poland National Type D visa lasts for up to 365 days, and your stay must exceed 90 days. If you want to visit Poland for less than 90 days, you should apply for a Schengen visa. On the other hand, if you wish to stay for longer than 365 days, you must apply for a residence permit.

Switching From a Type D Visa to a Residence Permit in Poland

If you plan to stay in Poland for more than three months, you must apply for a temporary residence permit, which is issued for a maximum of three years. This temporary residence permit can be renewed. You may apply for a temporary residence permit to the nearest Polish Embassy or consulate. If you are already in Poland with a national Type D visa, you can apply for a residence permit directly at the Polish regional office of the province you currently reside in.

Poland Residence Card

The residence card is a document that confirms your identity during your stay in Poland. This document allows you to cross the Polish border without having a visa and stay in other countries of the Schengen area for a period not exceeding 90 days. In order to get a residence card for Poland, you must first obtain a Poland residence permit.

You should receive your visa application answer within 60 days. If accepted, you will be equipped with a residence card.

What If My Visa Application Is Rejected?

If your application for a long-stay D visa is rejected/denied, you can appeal the decision. The visa rejection letter will have instructions on how to continue with the appeal process – you can submit the appeal until eight weeks after your rejected visa application. The most common reasons a long-stay visa is rejected include lack of documentation and a failure to convince the visa officers that your intentions are genuine.

Please be aware of the appeal process fee and that you are required to pay for it. (The appeal fee is around €80)

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