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Books of accounts shall be kept in the Polish language.

In practice, it means that all descriptions of transactions, account names, the reports automatically created by the computer system (e.g. balance sheet, trial balance, profit and loss account) should be prepared in Polish. Nevertheless the computer system used for keeping the books of accounts may be managed in any foreign language.

Simultaneously, books of accounts shall be kept in  the Polish currency. It means that business transactions expressed in foreign currencies shall  be booked in a manner allowing to determine of the amount of the transaction in both Polish and foreign currency.

It should be emphasized that Polish tax regulations provide specific provisions in respect of calculation of foreign exchange differences as well as valuation of the transactions conducted in foreign currency. In practice, transactions expressed in foreign currency should be entered into the system in manner enabling their settlement both for tax purposes (mainly corporate income tax and VAT) and accounting purposes as well.

Accounting and bookkeeping in Polish language, currency | MDDP Outsourcing | Publications

Place of keeping the books of accounts

Generally, the books of accounts are maintained by  the entity. However, the bookkeeping may be outsourced to a local business entity or the business entity from certain countries (including the EU and EFTA), which are licensed to provide such services.

The business entity is not limited in choosing the  place of keeping the books of accounts (e.g. the registered office of an entity, a representative orbranch office of legal person) located in Poland,  as well as abroad. If the branch (business unit) – as a part of business entity  is not entitled to prepare the separate financial statement, it can be authorized (by the business entity) to keep the books of accounts for itself or for whole business entity. This kind of authorization does not determine the obligation of preparation the financial statements for the branch (business unit) or for whole business entity.

In practice, due to numerous additional requirements imposed by the Polish accounting law in respect of maintaining books of accounts as well as amendments of tax system, small and mediumsized enterprises outsource this services to a professional accounting offices.

Books of accounts maintained on server located offsite the place of bookkeeping

Computerized book of accounts, accounting information resources in the form of separate electronic data files, databases or the individual separate components are regarded as equivalent of the books of accounts, irrespective of the place of their origin and storage.

An entity may maintain the accounting system information resources in this form, providing that the entity is in the possession of software enabling toobtain readable information in respect of entries made in the books of accounts, by printing it out or transferring it into another data medium.

Books of accounts maintained by using a server located offsite the places of bookkeeping are considered as kept in the proper way when at least the following conditions are met:

  • the entity takes control over the books of accounts and all made entries;
  • the entity ensures identity of books of accounts and the copies of the reports/data received by the wired or wireless links;
  • books of accounts should be kept in reliable, errorfree and in verifiable manner and on an ongoing basis;
  • booking entries can be linked with the books of account;
  • the books of accounts, accounting documents, stocktaking documentation, financial statements and other should be stored in a proper manner and protected against forbidden modifications, unauthorized distribution, damage ordestruction;
  • the books of accounts are always available in place of keeping the entity’s books of accounts;
  • the business entity owns the document printed out  in the form of books of accounts or saved the contents of the books of accounts on another electronic data medium – if the entity is in the possession of software enabling to obtain readable information for the period not shorter than 5 years.


Outsourced accounting services
 

If the books of accounts are not kept in the registered office of entity (branch, business unit), the entity’s manager is required to:
 

  • inform a relevant tax office about the place where the books of accounts are kept – within 15 days from the date when the books have been moved outside the registered office of the entity (branch, business unit);
  • ensure access to the book of accounts for auditing by authorized external control bodies in the registered office of the entity (branch, business unit).


This situation may happen if the place of keeping the books of accounts is not the same as the registered office of an entity. In other words, the tax office should be notified about the fact of keeping the books of accounts in the offices of the branches (business units), other offices (not the headquarters or places of management) or if it has  been outsourced to a business entity licensed to provide such services.

The entity’s manager is responsible for the fulfillment of accounting obligations specified in the Act even if the place of bookkeeping is outsourced to an external entity.

Due to several discrepancies between the accounting regulations and the tax law as well as a number of duties of reporting to external bodies such as the Polish National Bank or the Central Statistical Office, the issue of bookkeeping is often outsourced to a professional, fullservice providers. In practice, the preparation of tax returns, financial statements and a number of other reports in the Polish language is associated with numerous timeconsuming administrative tasks. To meet the expectations of customers, accounting offices offer comprehensive services including: the tax compliance, bookkeeping and other reporting services. Because of specialization and innovative IT solutions, the outsourcing gives the possibility to:

  • optimize the administrative costs within the company;

  • improve and take control of the company’s finances;

  • mitigate the risks associated with tax settlements;

  • focus the company on its core business.

In practice, more and more entities decide on the implementation of the electronic flow of documents both for external purposes (i.e. tax authorities and clients) as well as internally within the entity.

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