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The Polish whistleblower law is drawing close: 6th and final draft of the national act 

The Polish whistleblower law is drawing close.

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How to get compliant with the Whistleblowing Law

Poland, along with the majority of EU member states, did not transpose the EU Directive on the protection on whistleblowers before the deadline on 17th December 2021. The first draft on the Polish whistleblower law was published in October 2021. Since then, the proposal has undergone several changes, with numerous new drafts published throughout 2022.  

In February 2023, the European Commission referred Poland and seven other member states to the European Court of Justice for failure to transpose the EU Whistleblowing Directive.  

Details of the whistleblower draft law in Poland 

5 January 2023, a 6th and presumably final draft of the national act was published by the Polish Ministry of Family and Social Policy.  

In this article, Urszula Garbicz-Bryś, Territory Manager of Poland at Whistlelink, will explain the key details and aspects of the upcoming Polish law on whistleblower protection.  

For more information, please also read our article written by Whistlelink Partner KTW.Legal: Changes to the Polish whistleblowing law – analysis of the 4th draft 

Who does the Whistleblower Act apply to? 

The new law will include the following entities:  

  • Medium and large private enterprises. 
  • Micro and small enterprises operating in the financial sector. 
  • Public sector entities employing at least 50 employees. 
  • Public sector entities, excluding offices or organizational units of a municipality with less than 10,000 inhabitants. 

Deadlines:  

The Whistleblower Act will enter into force two months after its publication. Implementation is required within two months of the date the Act enters into force. This will give the obliged entities four months to comply with the law.  

According to the draft, private entities with 50-249 employees must establish and implement internal procedures by 17 December 2023. 

Poland will require data related to the notification to be stored for 15 months after the end of the calendar year in which the follow-up was completed.  

Sanctions:  

Committing two or more retaliatory actions against a whistleblower may result in imprisonment for up to three years. Violations of the obligation to keep the reporting person’s identity confidential may be subject to the penalty of a fine, restriction of freedom or imprisonment of up to one year.  

Anonymous reporting: 

The current draft law on whistleblower protection does not impose an obligation to accept anonymous reports. It will be at the discretion of the employer to decide whether such reports will be accepted. 

Other key details about the Polish whistleblower law:  

The internal procedure should specify the “incentive system” in place for using the internal reporting channels. It must also contain information about the internal organizational unit or person responsible for receiving the report. This can also be an external entity. Furthermore, information on how to make an external report must also be included.  

External reporting:  

In the case of external reports, the public authority can issue a certificate at the reporting person’s request. This is to confirm that the whistleblower is subject to the protection specified in the provisions of the Whistleblower Act.

The following entities are required to set up an external reporting channel:  

  • Supreme and central government administration bodies 
  • National Labor Inspectorate 
  • Police and Prosecutor’s Office 
  • Local government administration bodies 
  • Executive bodies of local government units 
  • Regional accounting chambers, Polish Financial Supervision Authority 
  • Other state authorities 

If a reporting person cannot specify a competent public authority, the report may be submitted to the National Labor Inspectorate. An external report which may constitute a crime, should be submitted to the Police.  

The Polish draft Whistleblowing Act must still be approved by the Parliament and as of today’s date, the reading has not yet been scheduled. 

You can read more about the EU Whistleblowing Directive here, or visit our page about National whistleblower laws in the EU to learn more.

Would you like to discuss a safe and secure whistleblowing solution for your organisation? Please contact us or book a free demo!

If you have any thoughts about this article or would like to know more about Whistlelink, we’d love to hear from you.

Are you looking for a safe and secure whistleblowing solution for your organisation?Please book a free demo of our system in the calendar below!

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Annelie Demred

0046 (0)706 83 82 88

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HAPPY TO MEET YOU!

Get in touch

Our team is ready to answer your questions. Find the answer by visiting our support centre, or fill out the form below and we'll be in touch as soon as possible. Or simply give us a call!

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