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/car clearance in poland in 2023. step-by-step guide to customs clearance of a freshly imported car from other countries

Car clearance in Poland in 2023. Step-by-step guide to customs clearance of a freshly imported car from other countries

Car clearance in Poland from other countries, including European Union countries, is an important issue faced by many citizens and immigrants. But not everyone knows how to do it quickly and without problems. In this article we will give you instructions on customs clearance in "simple language", starting from the necessary documents to the completion of the procedure.

Following our guide, you will be able to easily and successfully customs clear a freshly imported car, avoiding unpleasant surprises and unnecessary costs. Regardless of where you bought the car from, our information will help you to cope with this task without unnecessary difficulties. Enjoy reading!


Customs clearance of a car from the EU. List of required documents

Customs clearance of a car from EU countries is the most common scenario for residents of Poland. Germany and Lithuania are particularly popular destinations, as they are close by and car prices can pleasantly surprise you.

If you too have decided to purchase a car from the EU, it is important to know what documents you need to have for successful customs clearance. Here is a list of the main documents you will need:

→ The stamped certificate of deregistration of the vehicle in the EU country from which the vehicle is being exported. This document confirms that the vehicle is no longer registered in the country and is ready for export.

→ Technical passport for the purchased vehicle.

→ Purchase confirmation. It may be a sale and purchase agreement, a deed of gift, invoice, etc. We recommend that you make the documents in two languages at once, in Polish and in the local language where you bought the car. This also applies to the agreement of sale and invoice.

→ Up-to-date inspection certificate. Remember that in Poland you will also need to pass a tech inspection, as the Poles trust their tech inspection and require it compulsorily.

→ Temporary car licence plates. However, it is worth considering that it is possible to agree with the seller to enter Poland with the old licence plates. But after customs clearance, you will have to return them to the owner.


Customs clearance of a car from the EU. Full guide

Step 1. Preparing documents

The first and most important step is to prepare the necessary documents. Make sure that all documents comply with the laws and requirements of Poland, and they must be translated into Polish. This is extremely important, as without correct and complete documents, customs clearance is impossible. The translations must be official, notarized, in order to exclude possible problems at the registration stage.

Step 2. Paying the excise duty on the car

The next step is to pay the vehicle excise duty. This process takes place at the Polish customs office Urząd celny (for example, the customs office in Warsaw). Its cost depends on various factors such as engine power, fuel type, age of the car and other technical characteristics, we have written about the cost of excise duty below in the article.

Then you need to fill out, submit and pay the AKC-U/S declaration on the official website. In case you are an electric car owner, we may congratulate you! You are not only exempted from paid car parks, but also from paying excise duty, all you have to do is to fill in the additional form WZZA on the website or fill in this form. In case you have more than one car, you can fill in this form. You can also get an excise duty exemption for a truck up to 3.5 tonnes or for a collection car by using the same online formula or filling in the form by hand.

You can also download it here and fill it in yourself by hand. We recommend that you take a photo of it so that you won't be told later that you didn't fill it in. Next, pay the excise duty depending on the type of car. Please note that one cheque is not enough, you will also have to issue a service charge certificate in urzade celnym. For issuing the certificate you will pay a tax fee of 17 PLN.

Step 3. Paying the VAT tax

The last step is to pay the Value Added Tax (VAT). VAT is also payable at the Polish Customs Office (Urząd celny).


Customs clearance of a car from the EU. What costs to expect?

Excise Duty:

  • For passenger cars with engine up to 2,000 cm³ - 3.1 %.

  • For passenger cars with engine displacement over 2,000 cm³ - 18.6 %.

  • For plug-in hybrid cars and non-plug-in hybrid cars with an engine displacement of more than 2,000 cm³ but not more than 3,500 cm³ - 9.3 %.

  • For plug-in hybrid cars with an engine displacement of up to 2,000 cm³ - 1.55 %. Such a car, for example, is the very popular Toyota Prius model, especially popular in the taxi industry.

  • For plug-in and non-plug-in hybrid cars with engine displacement over 3,500 cm³ - 18.6 %.

  • It is important to note that electric and hydrogen cars are exempt from excise duty.

VAT Income Tax:

  • Cars up to 6 months old, with mileage less than 6 thousand kilometres - 23%.

  • Used cars bought abroad by a private person - VAT is not payable.

  • Used cars bought abroad by a legal entity at net price (without taxes) - 23%.


Customs clearance of a car bought in another country

Today, the customs clearance of a car bought outside Poland remains a hot topic. Many residents of the country bring cars from various countries, such as Georgia and the USA. It also often happens that people coming to Poland for residence permit from CIS countries prefer to bring their own car into the country. In such cases customs clearance becomes a "must have" procedure.

Documents for customs clearance of a car bought in another country are not very different from those required when buying a car from the European Union. However, a significant difference lies in the amounts that need to be paid. Customs officers (Urząd celny) take into account several payments, including customs duty, excise duty and VAT.

If you have bought a car and decided to drive it yourself, take care of transit numbers for the car, they are issued on average in 5-14 days, and you will need insurance (green card). When buying a car on a car carrier, transit numbers are not needed, it is very convenient when buying several cars at once. But keep in mind that such cars will need to be brought to the technical inspection on a car carrier, otherwise you will not be able to get confirmation.

1. Customs duty is 10 % of the value of the car. USEFUL TIP: If you hope to save on taxes by buying a car from an acquaintance or friend and specifying a ridiculous price in the contract, e.g. $1,500 for a car that is actually worth $15,000, this ploy may not work. Customs officials may check the price of the car against the market value. IMPORTANT: cars bought in Switzerland, Moldova or Turkey are completely exempt from customs duty.

2. The conditions for excise duty are the same as for cars from the European Union. The amount of excise duty depends on the engine displacement and the type of vehicle.

3. When you clear a car from another country, the Value Added Tax (VAT) is 23% and is applied to the value of the car.


Summarising the findings

Now you know how to clear your imported car in Poland in 2023. However, before you can fully enjoy driving your new car, there is one last step - registering your car in Poland. To find out how to register your vehicle in Poland quickly and easily, read our article.

We provide comprehensive services for car clearance, registration, deregistration, insurance and much more. Our team knows all the intricacies and details of the procedure, as well as has experience in working with different cars and state authorities of the Republic of Poland.

So don't waste your time and trust the professionals. Contact us and we will be happy to help you with customs clearance of your car!


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