VAT in Poland

Adam Grabiński
Adam Grabiński Updated: 9 March 2022

The Value Added Tax was introduced in Poland in 1993 but since then regulations were amended many times. Currently, VAT in Poland is a part of the European common system of Value Added Tax. The standard VAT rate in Poland is 23% since 2011. There are reduced rates of 8% and 5% on certain food, books, newspapers and some other services.

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VAT and VAT-OSS in EU Guide

VAT (value-added tax) is a consumption tax assessed on the value added to goods or services. In general, it applies to the supply of all goods and services within the European Union. It is charged on the top of the purchase price of goods or services at each stage of production, distribution or sale to the final customer.

VAT in Poland

VAT in Poland is a part of the European common system of Value Added Tax. The main legal act governing the VAT taxation is the VAT Act dates as of March 11, 2004. The standard VAT rate in Poland is 23% and there are reduced rates of 8% and 5% which applies to some certain goods and services (e.g. food, books, newspapers).

Standard VAT rate of 23% applies to

All taxable goods and services which are not listed in the following reduced VAT rates

Poland – reduced VAT rate of 8% applies to (examples are given):

  •  some spices (e.g. cumin, saffron, sweet pepper, mustard),
  • specialized magazines,
  • construction services (under certain circumstances),
  • hotel services.

Polish reduced VAT rate of 5% applies to (examples are given):

  • tropical fruits,
  • some nuts,
  • soups,
  • broths,
  • bread of all kinds,
  • food for babies and small children,
  • hygienic articles (napkins, diapers),
  • regional magazines and books,
  • children’s pictures, drawings or colouring books,
  • maps,
  • other printed articles.

VAT registration in Poland

If you are selling your goods to Polish clients and perform some business activities in Poland you should consider registration for VAT in Poland. In particular, the following activities may require VAT registration:

  • Importation of goods
  • Local sale of goods to polish clients
  • Distant sale of goods to polish clients (dispatch from other EU countries)
  • Distant sale of goods from Poland (dispatch of goods from polish warehouse to EU clients)

In case of distant sale to polish customers (where the goods are dispatched from outer European Union countries), you can sell your goods without polish VAT as long as the distance selling threshold is not exceeded. In Poland, this threshold amounts to 160 000 PLN (ca. 36 000 EUR). Application for VAT registration should be submitted before the first VATable activities. The VAT registration procedure may take approx. 2-4 weeks.

Polish VAT invoice requirements

According to Polish law, VAT invoice must be issued not earlier than 30 days before the supply of goods or services and no later than 15 days following the month after the supply. Invoices must be stored at least for 5 years. Like other EU countries, Poland now permits the use of electronic invoices. Invoice must contain at least the following basic information:

  • Date of issuance
  • Unique number
  • VAT number of the supplier
  • The full address of the supplier and customer
  • The full description of the goods and services supplied
  • Date of the supply (if different than issue date)
  • Measure and quantity of goods and services
  • The unit price of goods and services (without VAT)
  • The VAT rate applied
  • The net value of the supply
  • The amount of VAT at each rate
  • The total gross value of the supply
  • Details to support a 0% VAT rate

Intrastat in Poland

When you are selling goods to Poland you may be also obliged to complete Intrastat statistical declarations. Every company registered for VAT in Poland must complete Intrastat declaration if they exceed certain thresholds. Thresholds are updated each year by the President of the Central Statistical Office and for the year 2020 following thresholds have been established:

  • for arrivals – 4 mln PLN
  • for dispatches – 2 mln PLN

Intrastat declarations must be submitted by the 10th day of the month following the period of Intrastat declaration.

The tax office in Poland

Foreign businesses should send their registration documents to the Second Tax District in Warsaw at the following address:

Drugi Urząd Skarbowy Warszawa-Śródmieście
ul. Jagiellońska 15
03-719 Warszawa

Are you willing to register for VAT in Poland? We would be more than happy to help you. Contact us and check what we can do for you.

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