Poland: Noteworthy Recent Amendments To Polish Labour Law

In this labour law update we consider a number of valuable employer and employee legal issues which need to be taken into account.

Changes in the labour law:

  1. The date of conclusion of an employment contract
  2. Posting of employees
  3. Types of work forbidden for women
  4. Employment on the basis of civil law contracts
  5. Minimum remuneration for work

1. The date of conclusion of an employment contract

As of 1 September 2016, in accordance with amended article 29 § 2 of the Labour Code, an employer shall not allow a new employee to commence work until they have concluded a written employment contract. If this is not possible, the employer must confirm the basic elements of the agreement in writing, such as the arrangements concerning the parties to the contract, the type of the contract and conditions, such as the amount of remuneration, time and place of work performance.

According to newly amended article 104³ of the Labour Code, the employer shall also ensure that a new employee is familiar with the content of the workplace regulations prior to the commencement of work.

The amendment implies that the agreement or terms and conditions of employment must be presented to the employee in writing prior to the commencement of work. Previously, this was possible up to the end of the first day of work. The new regulation will facilitate effective control by the National Labour Inspectorate (the PIP), as within the meaning of the amendment, an employee who works in a workplace without a signed employment contract, is working illegally, even if it is his first day of work.

According to the amended article 281 of the Labour Code, an employer who fails to comply with these obligations, shall be liable to a fine from 1,000 up to 30,000 PLN.

Recommendations:

To oblige HR Departments: i) to prepare a contract for a newly hired employee prior to the commencement of work, and ii) to ensure its signing before allowing the employee to work.

2. Posting of employees

As of 18 June 2016, new regulations on the posting of employees provided in the Act on the posting of employees within the framework of the provision of services of 10 June 2016 (the "Act") apply. The Act introduces a number of obligations primarily for employers who post workers to Poland.

The most important duties of the posting employer include:

  1. designation of the person authorised to contact with the National Labour Inspectorate (the "PIP"): The posting employer is obliged to designate the person empowered: i) to act as intermediary with the PIP; ii) to submit and receive documents or notices from the PIP; iii) to act on behalf of the posting employer in the course of inspections conducted by the PIP. The authorised person shall stay on Polish territory during the period of the employee's posting.
  2. submission of a declaration to the PIP containing the information necessary to conduct the inspection: The posting employer is obliged to submit a statement in writing or electronic form to the PIP, containing information necessary to carry out inspection in the workplace at the latest on the date of the commencement of posting. The statement shall include the identification data of the posting employer, the expected number of the posted employees to Poland and their identification data, the expected date of commencement and completion of postings, business addresses of the posted workers, the nature of the work performed by the posted workers, the identification data of the contact person, location of the storage of documents of the posted workers.
  3. storage of documents of the posted employee: During the period of the posting, the posting employer is required to retain the following documentation of a posted employee, on Polish territory, in paper or electronic form: i) a copy of the employment contract; ii) documentation of the working time of the posted worker; and iii) documentation specifying the employee's remuneration along with the amount of deductions made and evidence of remuneration payment.
  4. submission of documentation on request of the PIP: On request of the PIP, the posting employer is obliged to submit the documents abovementioned (point c) for inspection, their Polish translation/s, not later than five business days from the receipt of the request.

Moreover, within a two year period from the day of work completion by the posted employee, the employer is required to provide the PIP with documents referred to in point c, within 15 business days from the receipt of the request.

Recommendations:

It is recommended to analyse the status of workers currently posted on Polish territory, as well as the addendum of mandatory documentation, and a notification to the PIP.

3. Types of work forbidden for women

As of 3 August 2016, the amendment to article 176 of the Labour Code, which originally prohibited the employment of women in certain professions considered to be particularly onerous or harmful for women's health, applies.

These are specified in the Regulation of the Council of Ministers concerning the list of work types especially onerous or harmful for women's health of 10 September 1996.

These regulations have been declared by the European Commission as incompatible with the provisions of Directive 2002/73/EC amending the Council Directive 76/207/EEC of 9 February 1976 regarding the implementation of the principles of equal treatment of women and men in terms of access to employment, vocational training and promotion, and working conditions.

The amended article 176 of the Labour Code prohibits only pregnant women or nursing mothers from certain types of work.

By the time the new regulation is released, not more than 9 months, the existing Regulation of the Council of Ministers concerning the list of works especially onerous or harmful for women's health of 10 September 1996 remains in force. At present a new regulation has not been issued.

Recommendations:

The workplace regulations shall include a list of professions forbidden to women. Thus, the entry into force of the new regulation and the list of types of work especially onerous or harmful for women's health will result in the necessity to update the workplace regulations in this regard.

4. Employment on the basis of civil law contracts

The Act of 22 July 2016 on amendments to the Act for a minimum remuneration for work and some other acts ("the Act") introduces a minimum hourly rate for some civil law contracts. As of 1 January 2017, a minimum hourly rate will amount to 13 PLN per hour. This rate will be valorised annually just as a minimum monthly remuneration for work.

This regulation will apply to all mandate contracts and contracts on performance of services entered into by an entrepreneur with: a) a natural person that carries on economic activity and does not employ any employees nor enter into contracts with mandataries ("self-employed"); and b) any other natural person that does not carry on economic activity.

A minimum hourly rate will not apply to, among others, contracts where the mandatary decides on the place and time of a contract performance and remuneration is based on commission.

In civil law contracts the mandator shall:

  1. pay remuneration in cash;
  2. pay remuneration at least once a month;
  3. specify the manner of reporting the number of hours worked on performance of mandate or service during the conclusion of a contract. The lack of this provision results in the duty to take information on a number of hours worked from a mandatary in a date preceding a remuneration payment; and
  4. keep documents confirming the number of hours worked for a three year period from the day when remuneration is due.

The Act provides the prohibition of remuneration (from the minimum hourly rate) renouncement or transfer of such a right to another person. This provision is a protection of a mandatary's income and protection from abuse and attempts to bypass introduced regulations.

When more than one person performs the service, each of them individually has a right to a minimum hourly rate.

In the case of contracts concluded before 2017, by 31 December 2016 each of the parties may turn to the other with a motion to conduct negotiations concerning an agreement on a remuneration adjustment. If during 30 days from the motion application, the parties do not conclude the agreement, each may terminate the contract by notice specified in the contract or a two month notice period.

Recommendations:

It is recommended to analyse current civil law contracts, conduct negotiations for remuneration adjustment and prepare for new duties arising from civil law contracts that will take effect from the beginning of 2017.

5. Minimum remuneration for work

As of 1 January 2017, minimum remuneration for work will be increased up to the amount of 2,000 PLN.

This change will increase the amount of maximum statutory severance pay for employees terminating employment relationships for reasons not related to the employees (amounting to 15 times the current minimum monthly remuneration) and an increased remuneration allowance for night shifts (amounting to 20 % of an hourly rate of pay calculated on the basis of the minimum remuneration for work). Remuneration for a stoppage duration, minimum compensation for discrimination or mobbing at work and an amount to which further deductions from a monthly remuneration may be made, will increase.

Recommendations:

It is recommended that current remuneration structures be analysed and the remuneration adjusted to conform with the statutory requirements for employees with the lowest remuneration.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Authors
 
Some comments from our readers…
“The articles are extremely timely and highly applicable”
“I often find critical information not available elsewhere”
“As in-house counsel, Mondaq’s service is of great value”

Related Topics
 
Related Articles
 
Up-coming Events Search
Tools
Print
Font Size:
Translation
Channels
Mondaq on Twitter
 
Mondaq Free Registration
Gain access to Mondaq global archive of over 375,000 articles covering 200 countries with a personalised News Alert and automatic login on this device.
Mondaq News Alert (some suggested topics and region)
Select Topics
Registration (please scroll down to set your data preferences)

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including your content preferences, for three primary purposes (full details of Mondaq’s use of your personal data can be found in our Privacy and Cookies Notice):

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting to show content ("Content") relevant to your interests.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, news alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our content providers ("Contributors") who contribute Content for free for your use.

Mondaq hopes that our registered users will support us in maintaining our free to view business model by consenting to our use of your personal data as described below.

Mondaq has a "free to view" business model. Our services are paid for by Contributors in exchange for Mondaq providing them with access to information about who accesses their content. Once personal data is transferred to our Contributors they become a data controller of this personal data. They use it to measure the response that their articles are receiving, as a form of market research. They may also use it to provide Mondaq users with information about their products and services.

Details of each Contributor to which your personal data will be transferred is clearly stated within the Content that you access. For full details of how this Contributor will use your personal data, you should review the Contributor’s own Privacy Notice.

Please indicate your preference below:

Yes, I am happy to support Mondaq in maintaining its free to view business model by agreeing to allow Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors whose Content I access
No, I do not want Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors

Also please let us know whether you are happy to receive communications promoting products and services offered by Mondaq:

Yes, I am happy to received promotional communications from Mondaq
No, please do not send me promotional communications from Mondaq
Terms & Conditions

Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of www.mondaq.com

To Use Mondaq.com you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these Terms or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.

Disclaimer

The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.

General

Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions