Bridging pensions in a new way – for whom?  When can you apply for a bridge pension?

Author: Simon Starnowski / Grupa Murator
Anyone who is five years below retirement age and has worked in particularly difficult and health-threatening conditions will again be able to apply for a pension.

The bridge annuities were supposed to be an expired interest. However, this will not happen. The President signed an amendment to the Bridge Pensions Act, which eliminates the expiration nature of these benefits. Who will the bridges be for and when? What conditions must be met to obtain early retirement?


  1. To whom are pensions bridged?
  2. Bridge pensions – can they be combined with further work?
  3. Changes in the settlement of allowances for working in adverse conditions

The Parliamentary Bill revolutionizing pensions was introduced into the House of Representatives at the beginning of June this year. It was quickly adopted by the House of Representatives. Since the amendments were introduced by the Senate, the bill was finally approved again on July 28 and signed by the President. After the ceremonial signing of the legal act on August 16 this year. Published in the Law Journal, some regulations will come into force later this year, but changes to temporary pensions will only come into force from 1 January 2024.

To whom are pensions bridged?

Currently, temporary pensions are a benefit that expires because only people who worked in harmful conditions until 1999 are eligible for them. Now this restriction will be lifted.

Bridging pension is, quite simply, the right to benefit from ZUS for people who have not yet reached the legal retirement age and cannot continue working due to their health condition. They receive a benefit from the ZUS, called the bridge pension, after a decision has been issued stating the right to it, until they reach retirement age – at which point they retire to receive a standard pension.

Bridge pensions are for people who are five years away from reaching retirement ageBut they worked in particularly difficult and health-threatening conditions. However, to benefit from this right under the currently applicable regulations, after the age of 55 years for women or 60 years for men, it was also necessary to work in harmful conditions until 1999.

Therefore, the number of people benefiting from bridge pensions is gradually decreasing, and about 40,000 people currently benefit from this benefit. the people.

The amendment removes the requirement to work in conditions harmful to health before January 1, 1999 as necessary to apply for a pension. Now the period during which the person applying for this benefit has worked in such conditions is not important.

Bridge pensions – can they be combined with further work?

The amendment clarifies the rules under which you can continue to work without suspending your right to a pension.

In the practice of applying the provisions of the Bridge Pensions Law, the problem of circumventing the provisions of this law regulating issues of suspending the right to a bridge pension has emerged.

Pursuant to art. 17 Section 4 of the Bridge Pensions Law, the right to a bridge pension is suspended regardless of the amount of income received if the right holder performs work in special circumstances or of a special nature.

This regulation allows the suspension of the right to a temporary pension for persons who receive a temporary pension only if they work within the framework of an employment relationship.

At the same time, trade union organizations as well as employees themselves pointed out the problem of bus drivers (tram drivers) being employed on public transport by people receiving pensions under civil law contracts (such as secondment contracts), thus circumventing the regulations.

Hence, the Regulation is amended so that any form of performance of this type of work, regardless of its legal basis, results in the suspension of the right to a bridge pension.

Changes in the settlement of allowances for working in adverse conditions

The law of July 28, 2023 amending the Pension Bridging Law and Certain Other Laws, which the president signed on April 16, changes the rules for settling work allowances in harmful conditions, and also includes regulations regarding union activists and labor contributions. Syndicate.

The amendment also aims to provide better protection for union activists whose employment contracts have been terminated. This is a case where an employee who is subject to special protection against termination of the employment relationship with or without notice submits a claim to have the termination of the employment relationship declared ineffective or reinstated.

The annual limit for deducting expenses of membership fees paid to trade unions in a tax year from income will also be increased from PLN 500 to PLN 840.

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