You have a right to work

Do you know that as a temporary displaced person and Ukrainian citizen covered by the Special Act in Poland, you have the right to work? But what is equally important – you have rights at work. And it is in your interest to know them.

Under The Special Act, refugees from Ukraine receive the same rights as Poles to legally reside, work and apply for benefits in Poland.

Looking for employment is challenging for everyone, especially for the newcomers in the country, who are learning how to navigate the new system, regulations and labor market. Learn your rights, be updated and know you are not alone. We will support you.

Know your rights in work

Knowing your rights and the rules on the labor market will help you find better and more stable jobs and avoid difficult situations. Be sure you know your rights, what you can expect from the employer and what to do if you feel your rights are not respected. Always remember to:

Sign your contract before or on your first day

You got a new job. That is great news. Congratulations! The employer says you can start to work immediately and you will take care of the paperwork later? That is wrong.

Everyone who starts work in Poland must sign a contract with the employer in writing no later than on the first day of work. The contract should indicate the parties (an employer and an employee), the type of contract (the most common are: labour law contract, contract of mandate and contract of commission), the date of conclusion, the type of work, gross salary, the start date of work, working time. The employee must have the contract provided in a language they understand.

Note: the wage for the full-time job specified in the contract cannot be lower than the minimum wage (from January 1, 2023 it is 3,490 PLN). The minimum hourly rate is PLN 22.80 gross. 

You have the right to rest, have a personal life, take sick days and take holidays

An employment contract requires the employee to complete the working hours specified. The employee is also subject to the rules determining contract termination and the rules for overtime pay specified in the Labour Code. Further, the work experience duration matters when calculating the leave days (and future pension). Not only working subject to an employment contract is counted as work experience, like for example vocational school (3 years as work experience), secondary vocational school (up to 5 years), Bachelor's degree or higher education - 8 years are included in the work experience (even if the course was shorter than this!). The duration of the work experience will determine on whether an employee is entitled to 26 days of annual leave per calendar year (10 or more years of service), or 20 days (less than 10 years).  

If an employee starts working for a new employer during the calendar year, the time of leave is determined in proportion to the period worked for a given employer (in arrears). One month corresponds to 1/12 of the holiday leave. The leave is paid and the employee is entitled to the remuneration he would receive if working at the time. If any leave days are not used and the termination or expiration of the employment relationship takes place, the employee is entitled to cash equivalent. 

An employee is subject to 80% payment for the days when they have been issued a medical certificate of incapacity for work. If the doctor found that the employee was unwell before the date of the examination, they may issue a medical certificate of incapacity for work with an earlier date, up to 3 days back.  

Check all your rights and benefits, that may serve you

Are you a person with disability? Did you get pregnant or already are a parent? Do you live out of the city where is your workplace? Search for the information what benefits you can get, like extra free days for the childcare, etc.

Polish law envisions a number of other special leaves for taking exams, for the time necessary to appear at the request of a government administration or local government body, for an employee who is a blood donor in order to donate blood, in the event of the employee's wedding or the birth of his child, due to an employee raising at least one child under the age of 14 - for 16 hours or 2 days and others.