I visited Urząd Skarbowy (tax office) in Krakow last week with a friend of mine. Like many non-EU foreigners in Poland, he wasn’t allowed a PESEL which Poland uses for identification, insurances and taxes. This is why some expats decide to apply for a NIP number (numer identyfikacji podatkowej – tax identification number).
I couldn’t find any clear instructions concerning NIP number for foreigners so I decided to describe the process here. I hope that it will make you able to apply for a NIP number without any need to pay for help.
Learn more: What To Do Upon Arrival In Poland. Make sure that you have taken care of everything.
This article describes the easiest possible scenario. In more complicated circumstances, for example with tax residency, or with double taxation, you need to contact your local tax office or Krajowa Informacja Podatkowa (National Tax Information): 22 330 03 30. You’ll need a Polish speaker to help.
NIP number. Why and when do you need it?
NIP is often used as an identification number for people who work in Poland and are not included in the PESEL register i.e. most non-EU foreigners.
Learn more: Legal Basis For a PESEL For ePUAP Users
You need to be registered with the system to enable your employer to pay your PIT (personal income tax) for you. When is that? According to one external source the first PIT payment is due to the 20th day of the month following your first monthly paycheck. This means you have about a month (two months max.) to obtain a NIP number after you start working.
Documents required to obtain a NIP number:
- An employment agreement – a copy and an original to check against;
- A form of personal identification: your ID card, passport, or a stay card (karta pobytu) – with a photocopy;
- Some tax offices may also require a residency declaration – if this is the case, you obtain the form of the declaration in the tax office when you submit the documents.
Find your tax office
Your tax office is chosen on the basis of your place of residence. You can find it in a search engine here.
NIP number: fill out NIP-7 form
You can find the NIP-7 form here. It’s also good idea to use printed forms that are available in every tax office.
The Ministry of Finance has also published an interactive version of the form which makes life much easier. Unfortunately you cannot use it for this type of registration. But you can use it later, when you need to update some NIP data. For these kinds of situations you can find the form here. If the interactive pdf file won’t work, try to open it in another web browser.
Let’s fill out the form
I’ll use the interactive form to show you examples, but you’ll need to print your own form out, or take a copy from the tax office, and fill it out by hand.
- A says, that the applicant must fill in the white boxes.The tax office’s representative fills in the grey fields. You can fill out the form on a typewriter, computer, or by hand: with capital letters, black or blue colour.
- B is for a taxpayer identification number. Just leave it empty for now.
- The headline in C basically says: Application for the registering / update for a private individual being either a taxpayer (you) or a tax registered supplier (a company for example).
- D is an information note. Among other things it says that the form is for the use of non-entrepreneurs who conduct a business activity on their own, or who are VAT-registered taxpayers, or who are suppliers of social and health insurance contributions, or who – and this is us – are not recognized in the PESEL register. So we’re included in the last category of subsection a). This form is for us.
- E indicates the legal basis of the form.
Section A: Place and purpose of submission
In point A.4. we choose our status. You need to pick option 5: a taxpayer not included in the PESEL register (podatnik nieobjęty rejestrem PESEL).
The remaining options can be translated more or less as:
- A person who runs a business enterprise
- VAT suppliers
- Tax registered suppliers (your tax registered supplier is your employer)
- Health and social insurance registered supplier (your employer again)
As you see, only option 5 is for us.
Now let’s come back to the highlighted text on the top of the picture. Among other things, it says that if you don’t choose options 1 and 2, you don’t need to fill out sections C and D.2 of the form. Options 1 and 2 are for entrepreneurs and VAT registered suppliers. As we are neither entrepreneurs, nor VAT registered suppliers, we fill out the whole form except for the sections regarding a business’ data (C and D.2.)
You’ll see this later. I’ll remind you to skip these sections, once we get there.
Point A.5.: The application’s purpose:
- Update details
We choose box number 1: Registration (zgłoszenie identyfikacyjne).
In point A.6. you put your tax office. For example purposes, let’s say that my tax office is Kraków-Krowodrza. So I write: NACZELNIK URZĘDU SKARBOWEGO KRAKÓW-KROWODRZA (head of Kraków-Krowodrza tax office).
Section B: Personal data
7. PESEL number. Ignore it.
8. Nazwisko – surname
10. Pierwsze imię – first name
12. Drugie imię – second name
14. Imię ojca – father’s name
16. Imię matki – mother’s name
18. Data urodzenia (dzień – miesiąc – rok) – date of birth: dayday-monthmonth-yearyear
20. Miejsce (miejscowość) urodzenia – city where you were born
22. Płeć – gender
1. Kobieta – female
2. Mężczyzna – male
23. Nazwisko rodowe (według aktu urodzenia) – family name
*You need to feel it out, even if you’re a man. I didn’t and I was asked to write it down later on by a clerk.
25. Rodzaj dokumentu stwierdzającego tożsamość – Your ID type:
ID card – DOWÓD OSOBISTY
Stay card – KARTA POBYTU CUDZOZIEMCA
Polish passport – PASZPORT POLSKI
Temporary ID card – TYMCZASOWY DOWÓD OSOBISTY
Temporary document for identification – TYMCZASOWE ZAŚWIADCZENIE TOŻSAMOŚCI
Foreign passport – PASZPORT ZAGRANICZNY
27. Seria i numer dokumentu stwierdzającego tożsamość – the number of the chosen identification document
29. Obywatelstwo (należy podać wszystkie obywatelstwa posiadane w dniu składania zgłoszenia) – All citizenships that you possess, for example:
American – AMERYKAŃSKIE
Indian – INDYJSKIE
Italian – WŁOSKIE
French – FRANCUSKIE
and so on.
Next to each data field there is a box with the text: “Zmiana w poz. …” (highlighted). It means “Update in a box number… “. This isn’t used for registration purposes, so just ignore it.
If you were registered as a taxpayer in other countries, you’re supposed to put all your tax identification numbers in this section. If this applies to you, I’d recommend you to contact your tax office to verify your particular situation before you start the whole process.
For the sake of this example, we’ll say you don’t have a previous tax number, so we’ll go to the section B.3.
B.3 Place of residence
In our scenario your tax residence status is clear: you live and work in Poland; maybe you’re staying in Poland longer than 183 days in the current tax period, or maybe you can prove that your life is associated with Poland more than any other country at the moment. In our scenario let’s assume you’re renting a flat here. In this case put your Polish address here.
33. Kraj – country
34. Województwo – voivodeship
35. Powiat – poviat (county)
Write ‘M.CITY-NAME’ if you live in a city: powiat krakowski is for towns and villages around Kraków and powiat M. Kraków is for the city itself.
36. Gmina – municipality
37. Ulica – street
38. Nr domu – number (of the building)
39. Nr lokalu – number (of the flat)
40. Miejscowość – city
41. Kod pocztowy – postcode
42. Poczta – post district
B.4. Contact details
43. Telefon – phone number
B.4.1. Electronic address
This part of the form is for people who use ePUAP electronic address. You can read more about it here. You probably won’t have it, so we’ll just choose the “Resignation from electronic address” box, number 47 (rezygnacja z adresu elektronicznego).
If you put a Polish address in section B.3., ignore section B.4.2. If you want to receive documents to a different address, this is where you write it. I want to get documents to my rented, Polish, address so I leave it blank.
Section C: Data concerning registered business activity
Section C is only about details regarding any business activity. We can skip this section, as I said earlier in Section A.
D.1. – Personal bank account for repayments and recoveries
Subdivision D.1. is not obligatory, but it’s useful to fill it in. You’re supposed to give your bank details for the account in which you want to receive tax repayments and recoveries of overpayments. You can only put a bank account if you’re the sole-owner or joint-owner.
If you don’t wish to use a bank account, you should choose the resignation box – number 105. If you wish to receive money into this account, fill in the boxes:
101 – Country of residence of your bank or its branch. You fill it in only if it’s a foreign account.
102 – Full name of the bank or its branch
103 – Owner holder
104 – Full account number. If it’s a foreign account, you must include SWIFT code.
D.2. Business bank accounts
Again, we can skip this section.
Section E is for attachments, but we won’t include any, so we can go straight to the final section: F.
Section F: Signature of the applicant/ data and signature of a person who is representing the applicant
Points 118 – 121 are only for a person who is representing the applicant and should write his or her personal data. We can ignore it, because we’ve done it all on our own. Our data was given before, so we leave those boxes empty. But we fill out these boxes:
122 – submission date
123 – Signature (and a stamp) of the applicant / of a person who is representing the applicant
*Cross out words: “osoby reprezentującej składającego” (of a person who is representing the applicant) on the form, because it won’t apply to you.
The form finishes with a legal expression. It says more or less something like: “Fines may be imposed for tax offences against evidential duties, described in the article 81 of the Tax Penal Code (kodeks karny skarbowy)”.
NIP number: Go to the tax office
Now you’re ready to submit your application. I highly recommend you to go to the tax office with a Polish speaker.
You will find more useful articles here:
Just After Moving To Poland Category