How to obtain a cryptocurrency license in Poland

Regulation of the cryptocurrency market is constantly becoming stricter. Nowadays jurisdictions impose high regulatory and risk management requirements on virtual asset service providers.

Despite this, we always manage to find a solution that suits the client. All the time our team provides research of the market and regulations on various markets to find the best jurisdiction. Not so long ago we have made the global overview of the VASP regulation in EEA and ready to share information with our future and existing clients. Today we will look at the features of obtaining a cryptocurrency license in Poland.

Tax Summary:

  1. Personal income tax – from 12 to 32%
  2. Corporate income tax – from 9 to 19% 

What law/s governs VASP activities?

  1. Przeciwdziałanie praniu pieniędzy oraz finansowaniu terroryzmu (“AML act“)
  2. Wniosek o wpis do rejestru działalności w zakresie walut wirtualnych oraz zawiadomienie o zawieszeniu wykonywania tej działalności
  3. Pytania i odpowiedzi dot. rejestru działalności w zakresie walut wirtualnych

What activities are included in VASP services?

Under the AML Act, VASPs may provide the following services (Article 2, Section 1, paragraph 12):

  1. Exchange between virtual currencies and legal tender.
  2. Exchange between virtual currencies.
  3. Intermediation of exchanges between virtual currencies and legal tender or virtual currencies.

Who is the VASP regulator?

  1. Izba Administracji Skarbowej w Katowicach
  2. Ministerstwo Finansów 

What is the procedure for registering a VASP for a local company?

To legally offer cryptocurrency services in the jurisdiction of Poland, the following steps must be followed:

  1. Establishment of a local limited liability company (LLC) with the stipulation that the registered office can be virtual.
  2. Acquiring a Polish phone number, and verifying an ePUAP profile for a designated contact person.
  3. Compilation and submission of comprehensive anti-money laundering (AML) documentation in accordance with regulatory standards.
  4. Initiating the application process for cryptocurrency authorization through ePUAP profile submitted to Izba Administracji Skarbowej w Katowicach. The submitted application should contain important information such as the full company name, registration and tax identification numbers, details of the designated contact person (AML staff), a clear description of the intended virtual asset service provider (VASP) services, as well as a confirmation of the relevant experience of the company’s directors in such business transactions.

Is there any specific authorization required for a VASP from another EU member state to provide services in this jurisdiction?

According to the AML Act, business activities, including the provision of services specified in Article 2 Section 1 Clause 12 “activities in the field of virtual currencies” are regulated activities and require authorisation if such services are provided in Poland.

That is, a VASP from another EU member state must be authorized in the Polish cryptocurrency register. Such a VASP must have a local address (physical or virtual), a tax number and a contact person (AML officer) who speaks Polish. 

What is the liability for the activities of a VASP from another EU member state without local registration/authorization in this jurisdiction?

Pursuant to Article 153a of the AML act, carrying out an activity without registration as a VASP is punishable by an administrative fine of PLN 100 000 (EUR 23,000).

Manimama Legal & Growth Agency provides a gateway for the companies operating as the virtual asset wallet and exchange providers allowing to enter to the markets legally. We are ready to offer an appropriate support in obtaining a license with lower founding and operating costs. We offer KYC/AML launch, support in risk assessment, legal services, legal opinions, advice on general data protection provisions, contracts and all necessary legal and business tools to start business of virtual asset service provider.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter, not to be considered as a legal consultation.