Free acquisition of real estate in Poland by UK citizens only until the end of the year
For less than half a year, citizens and entrepreneurs from Great Britain will be able to freely purchase real estate located in Poland. Until now, as persons coming from a country that is a member of the European Economic Area, they could, in principle, buy land or apartments in Poland without the need to obtain a separate permit from the Minister of the Interior and Administration.
This situation may change after December 31, 2020. This is because then the transitional period defined by the Agreement on the withdrawal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community will expire. Until then, pursuant to Art. 127 paragraph. 1 of the Agreement, EU law shall apply to and within the territory of the United Kingdom, excluding those treaty provisions and other Union law which were no longer binding on or in the United Kingdom prior to the date of entry into force of the Agreement. However, according to Art. 4 sec. 1 of the Agreement, its provisions and the provisions of Union law applicable under the Agreement shall have the same legal effects with regard to the United Kingdom and Great Britain as they have in the Union and its Member States. Thus, legal or natural persons may, in particular, rely directly on provisions contained or referred to in the Agreement which satisfy the conditions of direct effect under EU law.
In addition, under the Polish Act on the transition period referred to in the Agreement on the withdrawal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community of July 19, 2019 (Journal of Laws of 2019, item 1516) ), whenever separate regulations refer to a Member State of the European Union or the European Atomic Energy Community, during the transitional period referred to in Art. 126 of the Agreement on the withdrawal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community (Official Journal EU C 144 I of 25/04/2019, p. 1), it also means the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland .
Based on the above-mentioned provisions of the Brexit Agreement, it is assumed that during the transition period all references to Member States in Union law, as well as in the provisions implemented and applied by the Member States in the implementation of Union law, also apply to the United Kingdom. As a consequence, UK nationals continue to be treated as EU nationals. Moreover, under Art. 126 of the EEA Agreement and the provisions of the Brexit Agreement (Art. 2 and Art. 126), during the transitional period the United Kingdom is still treated as a member state of the EEA.
Exemptions from the obligation to obtain a permit to acquire real estate in Poland, provided for in the provisions of art. 8 sec. 2 and 2a of the Act on the acquisition of real estate by foreigners apply to foreigners who are citizens and entrepreneurs of states – parties to the agreement on the European Economic Area or the Swiss Confederation.
As a result, citizens and entrepreneurs from the United Kingdom may still purchase real estate in Poland until the end of the transitional period provided for in the Brexit Agreement, i.e. until December 31, 2020 without obtaining a permit from the Minister of Internal Affairs and Administration on the terms provided for citizens and entrepreneurs from EEA countries. However, after this period, this issue will be regulated by a separate agreement regulating legal relations between the European Union and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
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