How to become a Polish citizen? A quick look on the requirements

Poland is becoming more and more of a multicultural country. As a matter of fact, up until World War II it has always been – with some 30% minority ratio in 1921… but that’s a story for another time. The point is, if you live in Poland, you can help this fine country become colorful by becoming its citizen. Of course there are always requirements to be met.

First of all, you must know that Polish citizenship can be obtained not in just one but in two separate and independent ways:

  1. by being acknowledged as a Polish citizen (by the Voivode), or
  2. by being granted Polish citizenship by the President.

Acknowledgement of Polish citizen by Voivode

This is the „standard” way to get citizenship. In this case it is granted by the Voivode (same institution that grants residence permits). Before you ask: temporary residence permit does not qualify for citizenship – no matter how many you had already.

In order to qualify, you must:

I. pass a Polish language exam at least B1 level (or graduate from Polish school or University with classes in Polish)

II. and either:

  1. stay in Poland continously for at least 3 years on the basis of either:
  • permanent residence permit,
  • long-term EU residence permit,
  • EU citizen right of permenent residence
    +
    have a stable and regular source of income in Poland and a place to live here
    ___
  1. stay in Poland continously for at least 2 years on the basis of either:
  • permanent residence permit,
  • long-term EU residence permit,
  • EU citizen right of permenent residence
                               +
    be married to a Polish citizen for at least 3 years or you do not have any citizenship;
    ___
  1. stay in Poland continously for at least 2 years on the basis of  permanent residence permit granted in connection with refugee status,
    ___
  2. stay continuously and legally (on any basis) on the territory of Poland for at least 10 years and meet both of these conditions”
  • permanent residence permit,
  • long-term EU residence permit,
  • EU citizen right of permenent residence
    (it’s enough if you only just got one of these – as long as you stayed in Poland for 10 years legally on any basis)
    +
    have stable and regular source of income in the Republic of Poland and a place to live here;
    ___
  1. stay in Poland continously for at least 1 year on the basis of permanent residence permit granted in connection with Polish origin or Pole’s Card (Karta Polaka).

Polish citizenship granted by the President

This is a special kind of citizenship process. What makes it unusaual is that there are actually no checklist of requirements that will assure you get citizenship if you meet them.

Instead, the President (or rather clerks from presidential office that represent him) has the power to grant you citizenship arbitrarily. Based on the arguments and documents provided by you in the application, the President has free hand to decide whether you can become Polish citizenship. The decision has no justification described and it is not possible to appeal to any higher institution.

So how to apply for citizenship this way if there are no clear set of rules? Well, it’s up to you to be creative and convince that granting you Polish citizenship would be a good idea.

These are some general points that can certainly be used to provide argumentation (please mind that these are just examples based on my opinion):

  • long residence in Poland,
  • Polish ancestry,
  • being active in a community,
  • Polish language,
  • knowledge of Polish culture and history,
  • promoting Polish culture,
  • professional qualifications (especially in high-demand professions),
  • professional or otherwise worth mentioning achievements,
  • family in Poland (whether of Polish or non-Polish citizenship),
  • conducting business activity,
  • providing employment to Polish citizens,
  • etc.

In conclusion, this type of process would require you to actively prove that you would be a fine addition to Polish society and that it is possible to „fit” into it.

Of course it goes without saying that on both of the above procedures, any circumstances that could rise any doubt that you could be a threat to Polish state or society, would be a reason enough to deny you citizenship.

Do you need legal assistance during your stay in Poland? Feel free to contact us and take advantage of our services.

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