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Temporary Protection vs. Residency Permit – Making the Right Choice

Temporary protections versus residency permit – what should I choose?


Ukrainians (with a PESEL number with UKR protection status) who have been covered by temporary protection from April 1, 2023 can apply for temporary residence permits to perform work or run a business.

If a person covered by the legal act on assistance to citizens of Ukraine decides not to submit an application for a residence permit, their stay in Poland will be legal anyway, at least until March 4, 2024.

The temporary protection carries some uncertainty because it is not known exactly until when Poland will decide to extend the period of validity of the legal act on assistance to citizens of Ukraine. The residency card is for the period of up to 3 years, while the temporary protection is uncertain in its validity – as of now it will be valid until March 4, 2024. People covered by the temporary protection can only leave Poland for maximum time of 30 days, whereas, the residency permit allows its holders to freely move within the Schengen zone for up to 90 days within the period of 180 days.

Persons who want to stay and work legally in Poland using another route may ask the employer to notify the labour office (provided that they have not previously been covered by temporary protection) and then, on this basis, may apply for a temporary residence permit to the competent Voivode.

There are different ways on how to legalize work and stay for Ukrainians in Poland. The legal act mentioned above provides almost an automatic protection to Ukrainians, however, everyone has to ask themselves a question – what is the purpose of my stay in Poland? If your stay is temporary and you do not intend to work or stay in Poland, using the legal act (temporary protection) is probably a sufficient solution for you. However, if you plan to stay in Poland longer, it is certainly a better solution to apply for a temporary residence permit, which will allow you to apply for a permanent residence permit in the future.

Regardless of the decision you make, Comigrate will assist you every step of the way!

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