7 Practical differences between Permanent Residence and Long Term EU Residence

As you may know, Permanent Residence permit and Long Term EU Residence have different lists of requirements. But are there any other differences in acquiring and using from each of these permits?

Today we list 7 practical differences between Permanent Residence and Long Term EU Residence:

Permanent Residence

Long Term EU Residence

May be granted only by Polish Authorities (still there may be similar permits in other countries)

May be granted by any EU country

Allows to stay legally in Poland for indefinitely, but you must replace your Karta Pobytu every 10 years

Allows to stay legally in Poland for indefinitely, but you must replace your Karta Pobytu every 5 years

Allows you to work in Poland indefinitely and without additional work permits

Allows you to work in an EU country that granted you this permit (i.e. if granted in Poland, it allows you to work in Poland indefinitely without additional work permits – but not in other EU countries)

You don’t have to pass any language exam to qualify

You have to pass a language exam on B1 level or graduate from Polish school/university

For the purpose of calculating required period of residence, only selected periods specified on the residence permit decision are counted

For the purpose of calculating required period of residence, most legal residence period are counted, including visa stay

In most cases, you don’t need a stable and constant source of income or a health insurance to qualify

You always need to have a stable constant source of income or a health insurance to qualify

You loose this permit when if you are granted Long Term EU Residence

You cannot receive Permanent Residence while you have this permit


Would you like to know more? Do you want to legalize your residence in Poland?

Feel free to contact us and take advantage of our services.

23 thoughts on “7 Practical differences between Permanent Residence and Long Term EU Residence”

  1. Based on given comparison, is there any benefit for long term eu residence card?
    Also, how to get permanent residence if one already has long term eu residence card?
    In path to citizenship, is there any consideration of long term eu residence card(if one already has it for many years)?

    • Hello Amit,
      here are some answers for your questions:
      1. If you know polish language, then you can quite easily get Long Term EU Residence, because most of your residence periods will be relevant for a 5-year residence requirement. In most cases the only reasonably possible way to get Permanant Residence is to marry a Polish citizen (of course there are more options for that but rarely anyone qualify), so it’s perceived as a harder to get. There aren’t many people who qualify for both permits, so in my opinion it’s not really a matter of comparing which one is better.
      2. You can’t get Permanent Residence if you have Long Term EU Residence. Even if you got one already and then you get a Long Term EU, you loose PE. Besides, there are no real practical advantages of PE, except for longer validity of a card.
      3. You may get Polish citizenship if you stay in Poland, having Long Term EU Residence permit for 10 years (it’s the same with Permanent Residence – 10 years).

      • Dear Piotr,
        Thank you for these information.
        Here i have a question; Why the B1 language level is required while applying for Long Term EU Residence permit ?
        If i have B1 language level, the most logic and relevant to apply for Polish citizenship (more wide rights) than Long Term EU Residence permit; here, could you please let us know what’s the difference and what’s the purposes to force introducing the condition of language when applying for Long Term EU Residence permit ?

        Thank you in advance,


        • Hello Atef,
          I know and understand the rules, but I don’t make them – so as for the reasons behind the nature of these provisions I can only speculate. I believe LTEUR was made in order to implement EU law, while PR was more a “national” invention. That’s why they are different in terms of requirements.
          The purpose of LTEUR is to stay in Poland or other EU country for long period of time, so european governments may want to just ensure you are a part of country’s society. Knowing the language is a good sign of it.
          As for citizenship – in most cases you need to first get PR or LTEUR and stay for some time based on one of these permits to get citizenship.

  2. Just what I was looking for. A clear, concise description. Your comments to Atef also answered my remaining questions. Thanks, Pan Piotr!

  3. Hi great article, I have been on poland for 7+ years on karta pobytu but havnt given polish exam can I directly straight away for citizenship as you mentioned unless a person marries a polish citizen there is not much Option to apply for resident permit ( would be nice to know though what other conditions to qualify for it)

  4. Hello Mr. Piotr,

    I’ve been in Poland since, the last day of March 2018. I’ve had my decision since October 2018 (Regular karta pobytu). In September 2019 I’ve applied to change it so so called “EU Blue Card” (Temporary also). And I’ve been on this since December 2019.

    I’ll be exactly 4 years here on 31/3/2022. I work in IT. Will I be elegible to apply for Poland’s permanent residence (NOT EU Long Term), without polish language assesment and with 4 years instead of 4, next April 2022?

    • Unfortunately, in order to use this 4-years basis, your profession has to be on the list certified by Polish ministry. Since there is no list of professions certified, it is not possible to apply for permanent residence based on this circumstance.
      Unfortunately, no one knows when such list will be certified, but I’m afraid it’s possible it won’t happen in the near future.

  5. Hello Piotr,

    Hope you are doing fine.

    I have Polish Blue Card issued on August 2018 but I arrived in Poland in November 2017. I don’t know Polish Language. My new Blue card renewed in Aug 2021 and it is Valid for July 2024.
    Question 1- When would I be eligible for Applying Permanent residence card for 10 Year’s ?
    Question 2- If I will get Permanent residence and later I lost my Job then for how many month’s I can stay in Poland, as I understand in case of Temporary Blue card it is maximum 3 month’s as per law.

    Thanks in Advance

  6. Thank you for this extremely well written Blog. However, I would like to understand more on Work Permit Requirements.
    As we know that with EU Blue card, after completion of 2 years with the first employer, it is allowed to access rest of the EU without having to require a new work permit.
    Now if someone gives up the Blue Card for LTEUR, will it still hold true, or will a new work permit be needed to move to another EU state for work ? I am finding conflicting information on different bligs regarding this. Hence, thought of checking.

    • Long Term EU Residence permit allows you to visit and stay in other EU countries the same way as a Blue Card (Temporary Residence Permit).
      If you get a LTEUR, you no longer need a Blue Card for anything, as it provides you all of its benefits and more.

  7. If I m staying around 19 months in other EU country and post that moving to Poland will my these 19 months count in Poland PR or in other words after completing my reaming 44 months in Poland I am eligible for Poland PR ?

  8. Hi Piotr, Firstly thank you for the blog. Very helpful!
    Do you know what is the 2023’s eligibility criteria to obtain a blue card in Poland?

    • You’re welcome!
      In addition to requirements for “normal” residence and work permit, your contract must be for at least 1 year (or indefinite), salary of at least about 9000 gross per month (exact number is not yet confirmed by the government) and you need to prove that you have university education or long experience in your profession.
      Please mind that so called “blue card” is not a permanent residence or long term EU residence permit (that the above article is about).

  9. If I stay and work for Poland for 10 straight years can I possibly get or the government will issue me a PERMANENT RESIDENCE without taking a polish exam?

  10. Thank you for this Article and responses. It has been widely shared in our Community.

    My Questions:
    I have been in Poland since April 2021 on student Visa. Started working in IT from August 2021 till date.
    I have my MA From polish University taught in English and we have a course taught in polish which is (Polish for International students – Total of 120 ECTS)
    I Currently have 3yr Residence Permit which will expire in 2026.

    Does that mean i can apply for LTEUR from 2026 ?

    Looking forward to your reply

    Thank you


Leave a comment