VisaGuide » Europe » Poland Visa » Residence Permit » Permanent Residence
Complete guide to obtaining a permanent residence permit in Poland, options, fees, requirements and FAQs

If you have lived in Poland for at least five continuous years, you are entitled to apply for permanent residency. So, initially, you must have held a Polish temporary residence permit issued either for work, studies, or marriage to a Polish citizen. 

A permanent residence permit does not allow you to work or study in other European countries.

Poland Permanent Residence Permit Criteria

To obtain permanent residency in Poland, you must meet one of the following criteria:

  • You have lived in Poland for at least five years with either a Polish work visa, Polish student visa, or Polish family reunification visa.
  • You have been married to a Polish citizen for at least three years.
  • You have Polish origin and would like to live in Poland permanently.
  • You are the child of someone who has been granted a  permanent residence permit.
  • You are the child of a Polish citizen.
  • You have been granted asylum in Poland.
  • You have a tolerated stay permit, have been living in Poland for the last ten years, and it is not possible for you to return to your home country (due to fear of persecution or unfair treatment).
  • You are a victim of human trafficking, have been living in Poland for at least one year, and have cooperated with law enforcement.

Benefits of Permanent Residency in Poland

When you apply for a permanent residence permit, you are entitled to apply for a Pole’s Card, and enjoy the following benefits:

  • You can pass the Polish borders for free.
  • You can apply for Polish citizenship.
  • You can get help from the Consul in case of required at-risk situations.
  • You can undertake legal work in Poland without applying for a work permit.
  • You can conduct any type of business activity in Polish territory.
  • You can use the free education system and the right to apply for scholarships.
  • You can use free healthcare in case of emergencies.
  • You can use a 37% discount on rail travel in Poland.
  • You can visit museums in Poland for free.
  • You can apply for funds from the Polish State Budget.
  • You can invite your family members to live together with you in Poland.

How to Apply for Permanent Residency in Poland?

To get a permanent residence permit in Poland, you must follow these steps:

  1. Locate the Polish Governor’s Office. The Governor’s office is where you apply for a permanent residence permit and submit all your documents, so this is your first point of reference.
  2. Collect all required documents. Before you can submit an application, you need a set of supporting documents, such as pictures and proof of eligibility for permanent residence. See the required documents under “Document Checklist” below.
  3. Translate all required documents into Polish. All required documents for a Poland permanent residence permit must be translated into Polish and legalized before submission. You are required to submit both the original and copies of the documents. The original documents will be returned to you after the application process is finished.
  4. Submit your application and wait for an answer. After finishing all of the other steps, submit all of the required documents to the Governor’s office. After submitting the documents, you must wait for an answer. The processing time for your residence permit will realistically take around six to twelve months.

How Long Does a Polish Permanent Residence Permit Take to Process?

The permanent residence permit takes around one month to process. However, in practice, the processing time will take much longer (from six to twelve months).

Document Checklist for Poland Permanent Residence Permit 

The required documents for a permanent Polish residence application are:

  • Two copies of the permanent residence permit application form. The form is available on the Polish Government website.
  • The original and copied versions of your passport.
  • Four recent photos (in accordance with the visa photo guidelines).
  • Proof of the reasoning behind the application for a permanent residence permit.
  • Proof of paid stamp duty. The fee is around €11.

Depending on your status as a foreigner, you might be required to submit additional documents for your permanent residence permit.

  • If you have Polish origin:
  • Documents that prove the origin of your parents, grandparents, or great-grandparents.
  • Documents that prove your relationship to a Polish citizen.
  • If you have a Poles card:
  • A copy of your valid Poles card. You are also required to submit the original document but it will be returned to you after the application process
  • Documents that show the reason behind your stay in Poland.
  • If you are married to a Polish citizen:
  • Copy of the marriage certificate.
  • Copy of the Polish spouse identification card.
  • Copies of your child’s birth certificate, if applicable.
  • Proof of paid taxes.

Note: All documents must be translated into English or Polish and duly legalized (e.g. via Apostille Stamp). The specific documents will depend on the case.

What Is a Pole’s Card?

The Pole’s Card is proof that you are a part of the Polish nation, though not a Polish citizen. You will get a Pole’s Card if you have permanent residency in Poland. Your Pole’s Card is valid for ten years, calculated from the date you acquire the card. 

You are required to apply for an extension at least three months before your card expires. The card will then be valid for an additional ten years. If by any chance your Pole’s Card gets damaged or lost, you can apply for a replacement at the Voivodeship.

You can also get a Pole’s Card if:

  • You write a declaration that you will belong to the Polish nation in front of the consulate or voivodeship.
  • You prove that you or your parents/grandparents/great-grandparents have Polish nationality.
  • You prove that your ascendants did not repatriate from the Republic of Poland.

The process for applying and acquiring a Pole’s Card is free of charge.

Difference Between the Permanent and Temporary Residence Permit  

The difference between a Polish permanent residence permit and a temporary residence permit is as follows:

Temporary Permanent 
Duration:Max. 3 years, with the possibility of extension.Indefinite. Has to be renewed every ten years. 
Conditions:You need an employment offer, acceptance in a Polish university, etc, to apply for a temporary residence permit.You must have lived in Poland with a temporary residence permit for at least 5 years.
Benefits: Allows you to live and work in Poland, according to the conditions of the permit. You do not have to re-apply for a residence permit after it expires. You only have to notify the government of your stay extension.
Cost:Around €94 Around €140

How Long After Permanent Residency Can I Apply for Polish Citizenship?

You can apply for Polish citizenship if you have lived without interruptions for at least 2 years in Poland with a permanent residence permit. The permanent residence permit does not allow you to work in any other country besides Poland.

Did you find this page helpful?
Yes No
Scroll to Top