Vat number in Poland – brief introduction

If you are interested in expanding the scope of your business within European Union, Poland will definitely come into your view as one of very tempting options. In the following, we briefly present the basic information about what we need to know about involved procedures.

The Polish VAT number – format and name

VAT identification number (VATIN) is universally used in many countries, in some under a different name – in Poland it is called NIP (Numer Identyfikacji Podatkowej) and composes of 10 digits preceded by letters of country code (PL). For those interested in identifying details, the first 3 digits signify the Tax Office which issued the VAT number. The following VATIN could serve as an example of what NIP would look like: PL2563237087

Do you need to register for VAT?

Vat number in foreign country is absolutely necessary for storing goods and in case of exceeding thresholds. Threshold for transactions within EU is 10 000 EUR yearly in sales to the different countries, beyond which one is obliged to register in every country in which transactions took place. Alternatively, VAT OSS is a valid option, in case it does not fit our needs the only way remaining is completing VAT registration in the areas of our business activity. In case of transactions not covered by VAT OSS, Polish VAT threshold is equal to 40 000 EUR or 200 000 PLN (as of 2022) for VAT-taxable activities. Please make sure, whether your business scope is within the VAT-exempt category.

When to register for VAT?

As a rule, you are required to register before the date of first VAT-taxable sale or activity, as such would give you a status of VAT payer regardless of state of formalities. Failing to adhere to the rules brings the risk of being charged extra with interest as well as being prosecuted by tax authorities.

Applying for a VAT number in Poland

To apply for NIP you need to fill in an appropriate form available at official site, available in ready to print or e-version. Make sure to select version suitable to the profile of your company. It is worthwhile to know that at the same time as applying for a VAT number it is possible to submit VAT registration form, which will significantly speed up the process. Application has to be sent to the National Revenue Administration and you will be required to provide the following documents with it:

  • If applicable, VAT certificate proving that business is registered in different country in the EU
  • An extract from the company’s national trade register
  • Information regarding activities that are to be carried out in Poland or agreements with Polish clients
  • Deed of association of your company
  • Bank agreement confirming the existence of a bank account in Poland opened by your company
  • If applicable, power of attorney

Non-Polish applicants are required to provide documents translated by the Polish sworn translator. While it is not explicitly stated so within the regulations, translation by non-sworn translator may become grounds for application dismissal.

How long does the registration process take?

It is generally expected to take up to 3 days in case of VAT number application and about 4 weeks for VAT registration. Cases where the process was delayed are not unheard of, as such it would be wise to be cautious when deciding time of sending application.

VAT rates in Poland

In Poland standard VAT rate is set at 23%, with 3 reduced rates applying to certain products and services – 8%, 5% and 0%. We will not list in detail items associated with each category, as they are subject to change both permanent and temporary depending on the authorities.

VAT returns in Poland – deadlines

Deadlines in Poland fall on the 25th of the month following the end of period. As a rule, everybody is subject to monthly VAT returns, but option of quarterly returns is available to entrepreneurs whose sale value did not exceed 1 200 000 EUR in the previous year. In addition to that, there are several other conditions that may deny your eligibility:

  • Being an active VAT payer for less than 12 months
  • In current or previous 4 quarters delivered goods or provided services listed in attachment nr 15 to VAT act above value of 50 000 PLN (VAT excluded) within single month
  • Do not provide possibility of making payment via payment instrument during months of actual business activity

Final requirement is to make a written application to the Head of appropriate Tax Office by 25th of 2nd month of the quarter for which quarterly tax return will be calculated.

Checking VAT number

Finding a Polish VAT number online can be done easily, in case of looking for confirmation of our own valid VAT number a simple check on official site can provide printable information (under Sprawdź NIP). Information on the site is updated once every 24 hours. In case of checking VAT numbers belonging to different companies, you could make use of EU-wide service VIES, or Poland specific registries in National Court Register (KRS) or Business Activity Central Register and Information Record (CEiDG).

Simplifying the process

In order to avoid hassle of dealing with bureaucratic procedures, the entrepreneur could make use of VAT compliance services, who would swiftly solve all the formalities involved for you and provide expert guidance concerning any issues you could encounter during ensuing process.

Read more about our VAT Reporting Services