VAT registration in Poland

VAT registration in Poland
Marek Cieślak

Marek Cieślak

CEO CGO Finance

In the world of business in Poland, understanding VAT registration is key to ensuring compliance and optimizing tax processes. Whether you’re a new entrepreneur or an established business, knowing the ins and outs of VAT registration in Poland is crucial.

Our article provides a clear and comprehensive guide on everything you need to know about VAT registration in Poland for 2024, including who needs to register, the registration process, and the importance of maintaining accurate VAT records.

Stay informed about the mandatory and optional VAT registration, statutory exemptions, and the overall impact on your business in this detailed exploration.

VAT registration in Poland - drawers

VAT registration in Poland – basic facts

Mandatory VAT RegistrationObligatory for natural persons, legal persons, and units without legal personality conducting business. Arises when sales exceed 200 000 PLN or selling specific goods/services.
Optional VAT RegistrationPossible for entrepreneurs starting a business or those with sales below 200 000 PLN, and for activities exempt from VAT.
Statutory Exemptions from VAT RegistrationInvolves exemptions based on subjective criteria (type of activity) or objective criteria (sales limit). Exempt entrepreneurs don’t file VAT declarations or settle tax on sales.
VAT Registration ProcessCan be done in person, by mail, or online. ‘Active VAT taxpayer’ or ‘VAT exemption’ options on the VAT-R form. Registration is free, but a certificate costs 170 PLN.
Maintaining VAT RecordsActive VAT taxpayers must keep electronic records for sales and purchases. Simplified model available for those under the 200 000 PLN limit.

Mandatory VAT registration in Poland

VAT registration in Poland is obligatory for: natural persons, legal persons, and organizational units without legal personality independently conducting business activities as producers, traders, and service providers, including farmers and entities obtaining natural resources.

The obligation to register as a VAT taxpayer arises when:

  • The value of sales in the previous year exceeded 200 000 PLN (subjective criterion).
  • The economic activity involves the sale of goods or services indicated in the Act (objective criterion).

If you start your business mid-year, you should calculate the sales threshold based on your business’s duration. If the sales value exceeds 200 000 PLN, the exemption is no longer applicable. It becomes invalid from the moment of the activity which results in exceeding the statutory limit.

Regardless of the above conditions, certain activities require mandatory VAT registration. This results from provisions of the VAT Act. Activities subject to mandatory VAT registration include: 

  • supply of goods subject to excise duty (with statutory exceptions),
  • legal services,
  • business activity not registered in Poland.
VAT registration in Poland - woman

Optional VAT registration

Optional VAT registration may take place when an entrepreneur:

  • starts a business in the current tax year and knows he won’t exceed 200 000 PLN in net sales. The sales are calculated proportionally to the number of months in which the business operates.
  • showed sales revenues below 200 000 PLN net in the previous tax year,
  • conducts activities exempt from VAT (Art. 43, VAT Act),
  • does not have a registered office, permanent place of business, permanent place of residence or usual place of residence in Poland and provides in Poland only services such as transportation or telecommunication to non-taxable persons in Poland.

Failure to register for VAT results in listing as VAT-exempt in the taxpayers’ register.

Statutory exemptions from VAT registration

The VAT Act includes a catalogue of entities exempt from the obligation to register. This involves:

  • Exemption based on subjective criteria. They are related to the type of conducted activity. If an entrepreneur exclusively performs activities listed in Art. 43, they are exempt, regardless of their revenue. Examples include medical services and care for disabled individuals.
  • Exemption based on objective criteria. It focuses on not exceeding the 200 000 PLN sales limit. It also concerns those who start a business during the year and are planning the sales limit.

Being exempt from VAT means that the entrepreneur:

  • Is not obliged to file VAT settlement declarations, e.g., JPK V7M.
  • Does not settle tax due on sales in the Tax Office.
  • Does not have the right to deduction (return) of input tax.

What is International VAT Compliance?

VAT registration process

VAT registration can be initiated by:

  • a personal visit at the Tax Office,
  • by correspondence via Polish post,
  • Through the portal or the Tax Portal.

Entrepreneurs subject to mandatory VAT registration should choose the “active VAT taxpayer” option on the VAT-R form. Entrepreneurs exempt from VAT do not have to submit this form. However, if they choose to, they select the “VAT exemption” option. The registration application is free. It is possible to request a registration confirmation certificate for a fee of 170 PLN.

Applications should be submitted:

  • Before the first sale of VAT-taxable goods or services.
  • Before losing the right to be exempt from VAT registration.
  • Before the beginning of the month in which the entrepreneur intends to resign from the personal exemption or exemption to which he is entitled as a flat-rate farmer.

After submitting the application, the Tax Office will verify it. Registration will be granted on the day of submission if there are no deficiencies. Registration may be refused by the Tax Office, for example if:

  • False information is provided.
  • The company doesn’t exist.
  • The tax office cannot contact the entrepreneur.
  • The court has banned the entrepreneur from conducting economic activity.
VAT registration in Poland - drawer

In case of a refusal, the entrepreneur has the right to:

  • Request the Head of the Tax Office to rectify the violation,
  • File a complaint to the administrative court.

You should notify about changes to the data provided in the application within 7 days. This concerns modifications such as switching to VAT settlement on a quarterly basis. You can do it on the VAT-R form, specifying that it is about updating data. This doesn’t apply to changes in personal names or company names. They are processed using the NIP-2 form.

Do you need help with VAT registration?

That’s what we’re here for! Our experts will ensure your application is correct. We will help you to avoid unnecessary tax consequences.

Maintaining VAT records

Active VAT taxpayers are obligated to maintain electronic VAT records. These records are used to prepare accurate tax declarations, summary reports, and the Unified Control File (JPK_VAT). They include records of:

  • Sales – used to calculate the tax due for a given settlement period.
  • Purchases – used to determine the deductible tax.

VAT records do not cover expenses for tax-exempt, non-taxable, or non-deductible purchases. They do not affect either the amount of tax liability or the correctness of VAT settlement. These are recorded in other books. The VAT record must include details such as:

  • subject of taxation,
  • tax base,
  • the amount of tax due,
  • the value of tax corrections due,
  • the value of deductible tax reducing the amount of tax due,
  • corrections to deductible tax.

There is also a simplified model of record. It applies to entrepreneurs who:

  • do not maintain VAT records due to a subjective exemption. In this case, there is no obligation to maintain VAT records for exclusively VAT-exempt activities.
  • maintain a simplified record due to the 200 000 PLN limit.

The simplified record has no statutory form. It should be kept daily, but no later than the day before the sale. It helps monitor compliance with the 200 000 PLN sales limit. It should include information like the date of sale and the sales value.

VAT registration in Poland - woman noting


VAT registration is a legally regulated procedure for entrepreneurs conducting business in Poland. It can be mandatory or optional and is associated with certain obligations. Its purpose is to maintain the stability and security of economic transactions.

If you are interested in the tax and accounting in Poland related topics, we invite you to contact our accounting office in Warsaw. Our accountants in Poland are at your disposal. Contact us today and let us help you also with VAT registration in Poland.

FAQs regarding VAT registration in Poland

What is VAT Registration in Poland?

VAT registration in Poland involves registering with tax authorities for businesses conducting taxable activities, including production, trading, and services.

Who Needs to Register for VAT in Poland?

Registration is mandatory for natural persons, legal persons, and organizational units conducting business activities. This includes entities with sales exceeding 200,000 PLN or those engaged in specified taxable activities.

What are the Exemptions from VAT Registration in Poland?

Exemptions are based on subjective criteria (type of activity) and objective criteria (not exceeding the 200,000 PLN sales limit).

How Do You Register for VAT in Poland?

Registration can be done in person at the Tax Office, by correspondence, or online via or the Tax Portal.

What is the Cost of VAT Registration in Poland?

Online applications are free, while paper applications incur a stamp duty of 17 PLN. A certificate of registration can be requested for 170 PLN.

What is the Process for Maintaining VAT Records in Poland?

Active VAT taxpayers must maintain electronic VAT records for sales and purchases, excluding non-taxable or non-deductible expenses.

When Should You Apply for VAT Registration in Poland?

Applications should be submitted before the first VAT-taxable sale, upon exceeding the exemption limit, or when planning to waive personal exemption.

What Happens if VAT Registration is Denied in Poland?

If denied, entrepreneurs can appeal to the Head of the Tax Office or file a complaint with the administrative court.

How Long Does VAT Registration Take in Poland?

The Tax Office typically processes registrations within 7 days of application submission.

What Should Be Included in VAT Records in Poland?

VAT records should detail taxation subjects, tax base, due tax amount, tax corrections, deductible tax, and corrections to deductible tax.

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