Current rules on the payment of contributions from mandate agreements

Persons performing work based on a contract of mandate (also a contract for the provision of services to which, under the Civil Code, the provisions on mandate apply) from the hire date until the date of its termination are subject to mandatory  pension insurance contributions and work accident insurance contribution. They can also voluntarily pay  sickness insurance contribution. I such case they can be granted rehabilitation benefits, maternity benefits, or care benefits in the case of taking care of a sick child or sick family member.

Social security contributions are set as a percentage and amount to:

  • 19.52 per cent of the gross salary specified in the contract (mandatory pension insurance contribution), half of which is financed, by the   contribution payer,
  • 8 per cent of the gross remuneration stipulated in the agreement (mandatory pension insurance contribution - disability), of which 6.5 per cent is financed by the   contribution payer,
  • 2.45 per cent of the gross remuneration specified in the contract (voluntary sickness insurance contribution).

The amount of the premium for accident insurance varies and depends, among other things, on the level of the accident rate for the type of business. In 2021, it ranges from 0.67 to 3.33 per cent and is financed entirely by the contribution payer.

In addition to social insurance contributions, persons performing work based on a contract of mandate must pay a mandatory health insurance contribution, in the amount of 9% of the contribution calculation basis of health insurance contributions (gross remuneration minus the amount of pension insurance contributions and sickness insurance contribution financed by the contractor - 13.71%). Part of the health insurance contribution (7.75 per cent) reduces the advance payment on the contractor's income tax.

The above rules apply, inter alia, if the mandate contract is the only title to social insurance (the person performs work under the contract for the benefit of one entity) or if the person has concluded a mandate contract with their employer (apart from the mandate contract, the person performs work  based on an employment contract). A contractor will also have to pay the obligatory pension and disability benefit contribution for each concluded contract of mandate if the contribution calculation basis is lower than the amount of the minimum remuneration for work in a given month (in 2021 it is PLN 2.8 thousand gross).

Overlapping titles for insurance coverage - several contracts of mandate

A person who performs a commission for one entity may also be in an employment relationship with another employer or provide commission/services/business activity for other entities. In that case, there is a concurrence of the titles to social insurance.

A person who performs work based on a contract of mandate is not subject to mandatory retirement and disability pension insurance under all concluded contracts, if in a given month the total contribution assessment basis for work performed based on the contract of mandate reaches the amount of the minimum remuneration for work, while the order in which particular titles which are subject to concurrence arise is significant.

Example:

On 1 June this year, Janina Kowalska began performing work based on a contract of mandate 1 concluded with company X. On 15 June, she signed a second contract of mandate under which she has been performing work for company Y since 15 June this year. Then, on 21 June this year, she began to perform work based on the third contract of mandate concluded with company Z. In June, Ms Kowalska remuneration in the amount of 2 600 zł (mandate agreement with company X), 1 000 zł (mandate agreement with company y) and 2 000 zł (mandate agreement with company Z).

Janina Kowalska will be mandatorilysubject to retirement pension insurance for the performance of services under the first and second mandate agreements in June 2021. The total contribution calculation basis of mandate agreements 1 and 2 have reached the level of the minimum remuneration for work.

Overlapping titles for insurance coverage - employment contract and mandate contract with a company other than the employer and non-agricultural business activity

A person who has an employment relationship (employment contract) and provides work based on a contract of mandate with a company other than his employer and who simultaneously runs a business activity is subject to mandatory social insurance based on a contract of employment. If under an employment contract he receives at least the minimum remuneration for work, he is not subject to mandatory social insurance from other sources.

In the case of running business activity for which the contribution calculation basis is 60%of the projected average monthly remuneration (in 2021 it is PLN 3155.40) and performing work based on a contract of mandate, a person will be covered by the  mandatory insurance on account of the conducted activity. If the contributions calculation basis of the contract of mandate is at least the same as contribution calculation basis  of the business activity, the insured will be able to choose the title of insurance.

Example:

On 1 June this year, Janina Kowalska began performing work based on a contract of mandate, for which she received an remuneration of 2000 zł  in June. She also runs a business, for which the contribution calculation basis is 60 per cent of the projected average monthly salary.

In June this year, Janina Kowalska is obliged to pay social security insurance on account of her non-agricultural activity.

Changes in the contribution of mandate contracts

According to Jarosław Gowin, Deputy Prime Minister, the full contribution of mandate contracts as a result of the elimination of overlapping titles to insurance will probably be implemented as of 1 January 2022.

According to officials in government, adjusting mandate contract premiums to the level of employment contract premiums is to improve the structure of the social security system, unification of the principles of the contribution of salaried work, elimination of abuse of other forms of employment than employment contracts and higher pension benefits for contractors. However, in official statements made by government representatives, there is no information that the payment of contributions on each contract of mandate will significantly worsen the financial situation of contractors and increase the cost of labour borne by  company, which will ultimately translate into an increase in the cost of living for the average Pole through further price increases in various business sectors.

Assuming that these changes are introduced next year, it is possible to make a rough estimate of the difference between the current and future income of contractors and the cost of their work. A Contractor with regular monthly income from two mandate contracts of 3 000 zł  gross each, in 2022 will receive remuneration lower by more than PLN 750 per month (more than 15%), and the costs of his/her employment based on a contract of mandate will increase by more than PLN 600 per month - 100% (the data take into account payment by the contractor of a sickness contribution and projected changes in health contributions announced by the government as part of the "Polish Deal" programme).

What form the new insurance obligations will will be implemented become clear soon. Despite numerous announcements, the project of the act has not been published yet.

Katarzyna Michalik - lawyer, labour law and social security practice, LSW Leśnodorski, Ślusarek i Wspólnicy

HR Manager with many years of HR, project and people management experience gained in international corporations. She deals with issues of labour law and social insurance. For many years, she has been involved in social campaigns aimed at levelling opportunities and supporting people in difficult life moments. She is a legal adviser trainee and a graduate of postgraduate studies in many aspects of HR: "HR Business Partner" at the Warsaw School of Economics, "Human Resources and Payroll in Law and Practice" and "Personal Resource Management for HR Managers" at the Leon Koźmiński Academy in Warsaw.