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Illegal in Poland? What to do? Step-by-step guide

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People become illegal in Poland mainly due to overstaying their visa or missing critical deadlines in the residence permit process. Overstaying occurs when someone fails to apply for a residence permit within their visa's validity period. The second reason involves missing appointments for biometric data at the Immigration Office or not submitting an appeal in time if a Temporary Residence Permit (TRC) application is rejected. Both situations are often due to oversight or neglecting important procedures.

Risks of Illegal stay in Poland

If you're in Poland illegally, whether due to overstaying or missing key residency permit deadlines, immediate action is crucial. Ignoring the issue could lead to deportation, and the longer it's unaddressed, the longer the potential ban from Poland and the EU. Border police might approach you for document verification anywhere, like in shops, banks, or airports, and the risk of being caught is high, averaging two checks per foreigner yearly. This situation can be stressful and disrupts plans like employment, studies, or residing in Poland.
In Poland, the law prevents universities from enrolling illegal students. Employers also cannot hire illegal individuals without facing fines and potential blacklisting. Furthermore, banks typically won't open accounts for those without legal status, and landlords generally avoid renting apartments to them due to the associated risks.

Illegal in Poland. So, what to do?

Option #1. Family relations.

If you find yourself illegally residing in Poland, there are two legal solutions to obtain a residence permit. This article is written to share these solutions, which have already helped many of our clients secure their future in Poland. We aim to make this information more widely known so that more people facing similar situations can benefit.

Check the extract from European Convention on Human Rights
Art. 8: Right to respect for private and family life

1) Everyone has the right to respect for his private and family life, his home and his correspondence.
2) There shall be no interference by a public authority with the exercise of this right except such as is in accordance with the law and is necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security, public safety or the economic well-being of the country, for the prevention of disorder or crime, for the protection of health or morals, or for the protection of the rights and freedoms of others.
And combine it with the Foreigner's Law
Article 187 [Conditions for granting a temporary residence permit due to other circumstances].
A temporary residence permit due to other circumstances may be granted to a foreigner if:

6) His/her stay on the territory of the Republic of Poland is necessary due to the need to respect the right to family life within the meaning of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms drawn up in Rome on 4 November 1950, and the foreigner is staying on the territory of the Republic of Poland illegally, or
Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights protects family life, prohibiting public bodies from intervening or separating families for minor reasons like illegal residency in Poland. If you are part of a family living in Poland, this can make you eligible for a Residence Permit.

What is considered as family relations? What are the requirements

In the intriguing world of Polish immigration, family ties play a pivotal role. Recognizing both traditional marriages and modern common-law partnerships, the system shows its adaptability. Whether your significant other is Polish or from abroad, as long as they hold a valid Temporary Residence Permit or are in the process of getting one, the path to residency becomes clearer.

The twist? Proving a stable income is key, whether it's from a job, a business, or even family support. For common-law couples, a unique element emerges: the sponsorship contract. It's not just about love; it's about financial support, especially when one partner cannot legally work. This system creatively ensures that every family member's basic needs are met, weaving a safety net within the intricate tapestry of immigration laws.

Option #2. Child.

Another avenue for obtaining a residence permit in Poland is if you have a young child who cannot leave the country. This situation might arise if your spouse or partner is Polish, or has substantial work or business commitments in Poland, making relocation unfeasible. Under these circumstances, separating the family could lead to psychological trauma for the child. In such cases, regardless of whether you're officially married or in a common-law partnership, the immigration office may grant a residence permit to prevent family separation.

Check the extract from Foreigner's Law:
Article 187 [Conditions for granting a temporary residence permit due to other circumstances].
A temporary residence permit due to other circumstances may be granted to a foreigner if:

7) his/her departure from the territory of the Republic of Poland would violate the rights of the child as set out in the Convention on the Rights of the Child adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 20 November 1989 (Journal of Laws of 1991, item 526, of 2000, item 11 and of 2013, item 677) to a degree which significantly endangers his/her psychophysical development, and the foreigner is staying on the territory of the Republic of Poland illegally, or

For how long my TRC will be valid in both cases?

The Polish Immigration Office may issue a residence permit for up to three years in cases involving family ties, especially when a child cannot leave Poland. The success of the application depends on the documents, motivations, and proofs provided. While applying under these circumstances may be scrutinized for potential misuse of the law, authentic family relationships supported by complete and proper documentation typically result in the granting of a Temporary Residence Permit.

Am I still under the risk of deportation from Poland?

Properly completing and registering your Temporary Residence Permit (TRC) application with the Immigration Office provides immediate protection against deportation by border police. However, it's crucial to avoid falsifying reasons, as investigations can lead to bans. For assistance and detailed guidance, contacting our office is recommended.