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Bureaucracy for freelancers?

 
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Ninatchka



Joined: 08 May 2012
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2012 6:35 pm    Post subject: Bureaucracy for freelancers? Reply with quote

Hi all!

Just wondering about some bureaucratic technicalities... I just arrived in Warsaw a few weeks ago. I'm here on a working holiday visa for one year and I'm starting the process of finding work for the upcoming year. I want to freelance with a couple different schools or companies but I've been told by a few companies that I need to be a legal resident of Poland and have a company set up. I know this would require obtaining a Residency card, NIP, PESEL, REGON etc.. BUT:

I'm just wondering if I absolutely HAVE to obtain these or are there schools that hire freelancers without sending me through a circus ring???

To all you Polish ESL veterans who work freelancing at schools, what did your schools or employers need from you?

Any advice is greatly appreciated Smile
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simon_porter00



Joined: 09 Nov 2005
Posts: 445
Location: Warsaw, Poland

PostPosted: Tue Jul 31, 2012 10:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Your post (and therefore, potentially the question you're asking schools) is confusing.

If you want to 'freelance' then yes, you have to have your own company set up. This would mean:
getting registered in the place where you live - and finding a landlord who would agree to do this as they would then have to pay tax on this. (This rule has apparently been scrapped, but you'll often find local government offices asking to see this document - zameldowania)

Getting a NIP - business tax ID number
Getting a REGON - company ID number
Obviously filling in all of the paperwork associated when filing this - although this, surprisingly, is actually quite easy and can be done online.
PESEL you should have (maybe) as a result of your work visa. This is your personal Polish ID number. You used to get this when you registered yourself, but now I'm not sure. Have a look at your work visa, maybe it's written on there.
Sort out your own tax which would mean hiring an accountant (who may be able to help you out with all of the above bar the registration of yourself at an address).

So if you ask to 'freelance' - as this means you have your own company - and don't have any of the above, then schools would say no.

If you want to work for a school without freelancing i.e. on an umowa o dzieło (contract for work done) then they should hire you fairly easily on the basis that you have a document allowing you to work legally in Poland. It may be the case that some schools haven't seen such a document before and are wary of anything new (common experience).

Also the work visa has a time limit on it, so schools may not want to employ you 'just' for a year or so.

The other considerations are:
It's summer and Polish people are only thinking about eating kiełbasa - please come back in a few weeks when we can be bothered to think about the new semester when we have to.

There may be rumblings about the tax authorities finally doing something about the fact schools are misusing the umowa o dzieło and insist that all new teachers have their own companies.
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wojbrian



Joined: 13 Aug 2009
Posts: 155

PostPosted: Tue Jul 31, 2012 8:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What would it mean for teachers if the tax people do something about the umowa o dzieło? Would it mean that all teachers would have to be hired as employees?
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simon_porter00



Joined: 09 Nov 2005
Posts: 445
Location: Warsaw, Poland

PostPosted: Wed Aug 01, 2012 1:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

first of all, there should be due notification of the start of the tougher interpretation of the law.
In the time leading up to the rule change, schools would panic and force all teachers to start their own companies.
There's no way that any school would be able to pay a teacher as an employee without:
1) doubling the price per hour to the client / the cost of the semester
or
2) paying the teachers roughly half of what they earn now.

1) would be unpalatable to the student and no. 2) will be to the teacher. So the school either goes out of business (as some will) or they force all teachers to open their own companies.

The risk is, if all the teachers then start their own companies, they then don't really need the school as a middleman as they would be able to go out and find their own clients.

All in all, it'd be a sticky situation for schools
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Ninatchka



Joined: 08 May 2012
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Wed Aug 01, 2012 1:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks simon for the detailed reply. And good question wojbrian.. some of my Polish friends say this will never happen, but I'm not so sure.
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wojbrian



Joined: 13 Aug 2009
Posts: 155

PostPosted: Wed Aug 01, 2012 6:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Being an American I have always been an employee.

If I ever go back I would prefer to start my own business because it means more freedom from bad schools.
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