Your boss didn’t pay you for the work. What can you do to get your salary in Poland?

In professional life, one of the most frustrating things that may happen to you is not being paid for your hard work. Regardless of the reason this happened to you, the fact remains that you put your effort and got nothing (or little) in return. Such situation is certainly more difficult if you are in foreign country and don’t really know what kind of rights you actually have at your disposal.

So what countermeasures can you utilise in Poland to get your employer to pay the salary?

First of all, please mind that much depends on what kind of contract you have, what is it’s content and what is the reason for refusal of payment. Any additional agreements made with your employer may also be of much importance. Therefore, as with every legal case, to get the best solution, each case should be considered individually.

This is why the following points are listed only to give you general idea on what is possible.

1. Written demand for payment.

Even if you already discussed the topic of late payment with your boss, it should always ba a starting point to request the payment in a more official manner. The way to do this is to send written demand for payment.

Speaking, whether in person or by phone may oftentimes be just a waste of air. And it leaves nothing but memory. Sending a written letter (by registered mail – list polecony) will leave an evidence that you requested your salary and possibly prompt your employer will also write an answer in writing.

It also shows that you mean business – especially if you decide to use help of professional attorney. The letter should point out possible consequences of further delay in payment.

This will give your employer a chance to pay what is owed without a need of further steps.

2. Complaint to the National Labor Inspectorate (Państwowej Inspekcji Pracy). [ONLY IN CASE OF UMOWA O PRACĘ]

If you have umowa o pracę (NOT: umowa zlecenia, umowa o dzieło, etc.), your employer is obligated to pay your salary not only by the contract, but also by Polish labor law. This means you have some additional rights. You can submit a compleint to Polish National Labor Inspectorate (Państwowa Inspekcja Pracy).

The Inspectorate can then perform a check on this situation – the regional inspector will demand your employer to provide an explanation of his misbehavior. If the inspector will determine that your employer didn’t pay you (or pays with a delay), he can:

  1. order employer to pay you immediately and
  2. initiate proceeding for an offense against employee’s rights.

3. Claim for payment.

If the employer doesn’t pay and all you can get from him/her are empty promises, then you shouldn’t hesitate to claim for payment before the court.

This step requires very individual approach and if you didn’t consult a lawyer before, then now is the time to do this. In case of failure, you will have to pay the court proceeding costs.

Depending on your situation, the proceeding can take various course, but it is often possible to finish the case without a need of going to court in person. [This is a whole new topic and requires some more elaboration – I will do definitely cover it in the future, so stay tuned!].

The basic court fee to start the proceeding is 5% of the salary you claim (not including interest). If you decide to take advantage of simplified procedure, the fee is only 1,25% of the salary. Of course if the proceeding will be finished in your favor, your employer will have to return you this fee.

This is only relevant in case of umowa zlecenie, umowa o dzieło or other civil law contracts. If you have umowa o pracę, you don’t have to pay the court fee to start the prooceeding (unless you claim more then 50.000 PLN).

4. Debt collection stamp [ONLY IN CASE OF B2B CONTRACT]

If you have a company in Poland and you invoice your „employer” (your de facto client), you can take steps to encourage him/her to pay make payments on time.

In Poland the debt collection stamp (also known to as a preventive stamp) is usually placed on any invoice or other document stating the due amount from the contractor. The stamp informs the recipient of the invoice about cooperation with the law office and the consequences related to any delays in payment.

You can put such stamp:

  • on invoices,
  • on interest notes,
  • on payment requests,
  • on any documents confirming the claim.

In essence, it is a preventive measure that you can use to avoid any future conflicts.

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

12 thoughts on “Your boss didn’t pay you for the work. What can you do to get your salary in Poland?”

  1. What do l do if l signed a work contract under an agency and upon termination of the contract they just tell me to leave without money or signing any documents that they will send the money to me, they do not even have my bank details and have been ignoring for a week no

  2. Hi I’m working in one company and I get salary 2387 pln per month. But I’m working 72h a week and not only me working this company 10 more workers are have same problem. They not take any risk because they all apply for TRC .we didn’t get payed holiday not sick leave I talk with owner about this and he say you can live the job .but have family with me.what action I can take again the owner please let me know thanks

    • You can sue the employer for the missing payment.
      As for a risk of being fired in retaliation, whether your employer would be legally able to do this, depends on the type of contract you have. Best protection against unjustified dismissal comes with umowa o pracę. As for umowa zlecenia and umowa o dzieło, it all depends on what is written in this contract.

  3. Hello there,
    I have my own bussiness (jedną działalność gospodarczą) and my “client” (the company I provide my services) it’s failing to pay me on time. It happened three months in a row. I stopped the giving services to this company in May and now they are suppose to pay me the last invoice and it’s already 2 weeks since due date and again they are not paying me. I am afraid they won’t. What can I do as a B2B in Poland in such situation?

    Thanks a lot for your time and patience.

    • Good afternoon,
      as a company owner, you can request your Client in writing about the payment. If that won’t work, you can submit a lawsuit (preferably by requesting payment order, as this is usually the fastest way).

  4. Hello,
    I have umowa pracy till 02/2024 but in 06/2023 the police came and captured many people from the company. And since then we just stop coming to the office and all the work had stopped. I’m currently seeking for new job. But i can’t contact anyone to terminate the old contract also i didn’t get paid for June. In this case can you help me what can i do?
    Thank you for your patience.

  5. good morning sir
    this is peddiraju Vasamsetti from India
    present I am working in concept floor in Poland since July and August I am not getting salary what I have to do I don’t understand

    • Good afternoon,
      I can help you with requesting for payment, but in order to tell you what can be done, I would need to see what documents you have regarding this claim.
      If you would like to receive legal assistance with that, you can contact me via email:

  6. hi

    I worked as a remote English Teacher based in the UK for a Polish based School from January to August this year, after months of chaotic admin from my Manager, being contacted to work out of work hours, no formal training as Project Manager whilst teaching fir them full time I quit after week’s of begging fir my July salary, I was threatened sworn at and bullied to keep working, I was not allowed to be put in contact with their HR my Manager said he was going back to his native America and that I wouldn’t find him, and now the owner is still withholding my pay saying she had trouble transferring it to my bank, blamed me, and said I shouldn’t have told my students I was leaving because I was being bullied and no salary for 6 weeks I waited before I left. The Training Centre I was a sub contractor fir won’t tell me what the School was paid for my salaries no one will help me, I don’t know any polish to send in forms to the Polish Inspectorate of Labour. please help. my clients were, my students, very happy with my work, two other teachers quit for the same reason . please help, Catherine

    • Good afternoon,
      I can help you with requesting for payment, but in order to tell you what can be done, I would need to see what documents you have regarding this claim.
      If you would like to receive legal assistance with that, you can contact me via email:


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