• Bilateral social security agreement with the Republic of Poland

    If you send an Australian employee to work temporarily in the Republic of Poland, you must continue to pay superannuation guarantee contributions in Australia for them.

    Before you send the employee, apply to us for a certificate of coverage:

    We'll issue a certificate to you on the basis that you'll continue to make super guarantee contributions in Australia for the employee. You or your employee then show the certificate to the authorities in the Republic of Poland to be exempted from super payments in the Republic of Poland. The certificate can cover a period of up to five years.

    When completing the request for a certificate of coverage, you'll need to provide an Australian contact name and their phone, fax and e-mail details.

    When you receive the certificate, keep a copy for your records and give the original to your employee to take with them to Poland.

    On this page:

    About the agreement

    Our bilateral social security agreement with the Republic of Poland applies when double super coverage occurs – that is, when you or your employee would otherwise have to make super guarantee contributions (or equivalent) in both countries for the same work by your employee. It applies to Australian super guarantee law and social security laws in the Republic of Poland.

    For information about:

    The agreement started on 1 October 2010.

    Effect for different types of employee

    Employees working temporarily overseas

    If you send your employee to work in the Republic of Poland for a period not exceeding five years – for your business or a related entity – and double super coverage occurs, only the super laws of your home country will apply. This means super guarantee contributions (or equivalent) are required only under the law of the country that your employee is most likely to retire in.

    This rule also applies if the employee is sent to work for a related company and double super coverage occurs.

    Example

    Frank is sent by his Australian employer to work in Poland for two years. Frank's employer must make contributions in Australia under super guarantee legislation. Frank and his employer must also make social security contributions under relevant Polish law.

    As double super coverage occurs, the agreement takes effect and exempts Frank and his employer from making contributions under Polish law. Frank's employer will continue to make super guarantee contributions as required in Australia.

    This rule also applies where the employee is sent to work for a related company (provided double super coverage occurs).

    End of example

    Government employees working temporarily overseas

    If a government employee is sent to work temporarily in the Republic of Poland and double super coverage occurs, only the super laws of Australia will apply.

    The secondment period for government employees working in Poland is not subject to the five-year limit.

    Self-employed people

    The agreement doesn't apply to self-employed Australian residents working in Poland. They're not subject to super guarantee law in Australia, so double super coverage doesn't occur.

    Diplomats

    The agreement doesn't affect the treatment of diplomats and consulate officials under the relevant Vienna Conventions on diplomatic and consular relations.

    Extension beyond five years

    Generally, a certificate of coverage will cover Australian employees for up to five years employment in Poland. If you need coverage for longer than five years, you'll need to write to us explaining the reasons for the extension.

    Approval to extend a certificate of coverage is determined on a case-by-case basis. We can grant an extension only with the mutual agreement of the relevant agency in Poland, and only in certain circumstances.

    Subject to approval by the Polish authorities, an extension may be granted when the following occurs:

    • An individual who was scheduled to replace the worker is unable to do so because of death, serious illness or resignation.
    • The worker must remain in the country of secondment due to an unexpected personal situation – this includes medical reasons (self, spouse, children) or if the worker's children are required to stay to complete the school year.
    • The worker has been under one country's social security system throughout his or her career and is planning to retire in the immediate future.
    • The extension is for a short period.
    • The worker returned to the country of origin for a short period during the period of secondment for unexpected personal reasons. This includes medical reasons (self, spouse, children).
    • The extension for work purposes would be in the national interest of either country.
    • Cessation will cause undue hardship to the employer or employee.
    • There has been a reorganisation of a company and the worker maintains an important role in the reorganisation.
    • The worker has special skills or background, and the employer makes a strong case for needing the worker to complete a special assignment or project that will be concluded within one to four years after the five-year secondment period.

    An extension may also be granted in other special circumstances.

    Your request for an extension must be in writing and should include the:

    • employer's name, ABN and contact details
    • employee's name
    • certificate number
    • reason for extension.

    Send your request to:

    Superannuation – Bilateral agreements
    Australian Taxation Office
    GPO Box 9977
    ADELAIDE SA 5001
    AUSTRALIA

    See also:

      Last modified: 27 Jul 2016QC 23472