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Certificate А1 (ZUS) - What does it mean?

 What is an A1 Certificate (ZUS)?

The Certificate A1 (Zaświadczenie A1) is issued to confirm the payment of social insurance contributions in Poland.

Under EU law people are insured in the country where they work.

As a rule, managing a business at his own expense, an entrepreneur is subject to the laws of the state where he works. On the other hand, the provisions on persons engaged in hired or self-employed activities establish an exception to the general rule. The article 13 paragraph 1 a) regulation 883/2004 determines what legislation applies to a person working in several EU countries. A person who usually operates as an employee in two or more countries is obliged to operate in accordance with:

  • The laws of the state (EU) where he resides if he pursues a substantial part of his activity in that state (EU)

or if he doesn't perform a substantial part of hisactivity in the state (EU) of residence:

  • the laws of the state (EU) where the head office, business or employer is located, if it is occupied by one business or one employer; or

  • the laws of the state (EU) where the head office, businesses or employers are located, if it is occupied by at least two enterprises or at least two employers, whose head office or business is located in only one state (EU); or

  • the laws of the state (EU) that is not a country of residence where the business is located, if it is occupied by two or more businesses or two or more employers, whose head office or business is located in two member states, one of which is a country of residence; or

  • the laws of the state (EU) at the place of residence if it is occupied by two or more enterprises or two or more employers, and at least two of these enterprises or two of these employers are based or reside in different states (EU), other than the state (EU) of residence.

According to the Article 14 paragraph 5 of the Regulation 987/2009 for the purposes of the application of the Article 13 paragraph 1 of of the Regulation 883/2004, a person who “normally pursues an activity as an employed person in two or more member states” shall refer to a person who simultaneously or alternately performs one or more separate work in two or more states (EU). It doesn’t matter if you work for one or more companies or one or more employers.

How to get the A1 certificate?

Persons who are self-employed in two or more countries of the European Union can apply for the A1 certificate by applying to the ZUS US-2. The application can be filled out and filed in a paper version on the ZUS device or in an electronic version through the ZUS PUE platform. When applying through the ZUS PUE platform, you have to sign the document with an ePUAP signature.

A ZUS US-2 application

Filling out the ZUS US-2 application starts by filling out data about the person who does the work at his own expense. In the personal data block, you need to specify the company name, NIP, REGON, first name, last name and place of birth. Then you have to provide the address in the country of residence or indicate the absence of a permanent job abroad. If the address in Poland is different from the address of the company's headquarters, it is necessary to fill out the address of the company's headquarters.

The next step is to mark the scope of activity. Mark “X” fields corresponding to the field of business activity in accordance with the PKD. Then it is necessary to provide information about the location of the business abroad in each of the countries where you have intentions to work.

A very important element is information about the extent of self-employed actions performed during the period for which a person wants to obtain an A1 certificate. The table should indicate the expected turnover of income and working hours as a percentage, as well as the number of services provided. It is important to note that turnover and working hours cannot exceed 100%. The values in the table are supplemented for all countries for which the company will provide services during the period where the A1 certificate is applied.

An A1 certificate is always issued for a limited period. Therefore, in the ZUS US-2 application, you need to enter a desired valid period for the A1 certificate. In practice, ZUS units require that the attached contracts will be signed with foreign contractors. After submitting ZUS US-2, the social insurance institution will issue a certificate in paper or electronic form. The certificate can be obtained at any ZUS branch, on paper or in the electronic version on the ZUS PUE portal.

An A1Certificate - data correction

If there is a transition after issuing an A1 certificate, for example, to work abroad, it does not enter into force, an application for changing the data should be submitted. Changes must be made to the ZUS application US-35, where it is necessary to fill out:

  • data of the person obtainingan A1 certificate

  • the payer's identification data

  • the fee payer’s address or registered office address

The last part should indicate the extent of changes that have occurred in relation to the A1 certificate already issued. Similarly to the ZUS-US-2, the ZUS-US-35 application can be filed in paper form or through the ZUS PUE.

Guide (Polish). How to get an A1 certificate