Principles of control and supervisory activity of the National Labor Inspectorate


PIP, i.e. the National Labor Inspectorate, aims to supervise and control compliance with labor law, especially in the field of health and safety regulations and the legality of employment and other gainful work. The scope of activities of this institution is defined in the Act of April 13, 2007 on the National Labor Inspectorate.

National Labor Inspectorate - scope of activity

According to Art. 10 above of the Act, the tasks of the National Labor Inspectorate include:

  • supervision and control of compliance with labor law, in particular the provisions and principles of health and safety at work, provisions on the employment relationship, remuneration for work and other benefits resulting from the employment relationship, working time, holidays, rights of employees related to parentage, employment of young people and people with disabilities ,

  • control of the legality of employment, other gainful work, business activity and compliance with the obligation to:

    • informing poviat labor offices by the unemployed about taking up employment, other paid work or activity,

    • payment of contributions to the Labor Fund,

    • entry in the employment agency of activities the conduct of which depends on obtaining an entry in this register,

    • running an employment agency in accordance with the conditions set out in the provisions on employment promotion and labor market institutions,

    • conducting business by entities referred to in art. 18c of the Act on Employment Promotion and Labor Market Institutions, in accordance with the conditions set out in Art. 19c, art. 19d, art. 19 ga and art. 85 sec. 2 of this act.

  • control of the legality of employment, other gainful work and work performed by foreigners,

  • control of products placed on the market or put into service in terms of their compliance with essential or other requirements regarding occupational health and safety, specified in separate regulations,

  • control of compliance with occupational health and safety requirements,

  • control of records of employees performing work in special conditions or of a special nature.

The National Labor Inspectorate focuses primarily on industries and workplaces where the risk of poor labor protection is greater and where a poor protection condition has been previously identified. The aim of the control activities of the National Labor Inspectorate is to achieve tangible results in the form of a permanent improvement in work safety and compliance with the rule of law in labor relations.

How is PIP control done?

On behalf of PIP, the inspection is carried out by a labor inspector acting within the territorial jurisdiction of District Labor Inspectorates. Such a person is entitled to carry out (without notice and at any time of the day or night) the control of compliance with the law, in particular of the health and safety at work, and control of compliance with the provisions regarding the legality of employment.

The National Labor Inspectorate's inspection is carried out after the labor inspector presents a business identity card or an authorization to carry it out. It is possible to carry out an inspection at the entrepreneur's place without authorization to perform it, however, provided that the circumstances justify its immediate undertaking. In such a situation, the authorization should be delivered to the inspected entity without delay (within 7 days).

The National Labor Inspectorate's control takes place at the seat of the controlled entity and in other places where its tasks are performed or where financial and HR documents are kept. Importantly, individual control activities may also be performed at the seat of the PIP organizational unit. The labor inspector has the right to move freely within the premises of the inspected entity, without the obligation to obtain a pass. He is also exempt from body search, also in a situation where such action is provided for in the internal regulations of the controlled entity.

What powers does a labor inspector have?

During the control of the National Labor Inspectorate, the inspector has the right, inter alia, to down:

  • free access to the workplace and to all its facilities, rooms, etc.,

  • access to the documentation of the workplace,

  • conducting visual inspections of facilities, machinery and equipment as well as work rooms,

  • request information on matters under control,

  • checking the identity of people performing work or staying on the premises of the controlled entity, questioning them and requesting statements on the legality of employment or other gainful activity,

  • access to personal files and other documents related to the performance of work by employees or persons employed on a basis other than an employment contract,

  • get acquainted with the decisions issued by other control and supervision bodies over working conditions and their implementation,

  • using the help of experts and specialists as well as accredited laboratories.

In a situation where, while examining the legality of employment, a labor inspector finds a breach of the provisions of the Act on employment promotion and labor market institutions, he has the right to apply to the competent court to punish the persons responsible for the irregularities found. The labor inspector also has the right to notify the competent authorities about the infringement, including in particular:

  • The Police or the Border Guard - on violation of the provisions on foreigners,

  • Tax Audit Office - on violation of tax law,

  • ZUS - on breach of social security regulations.

If, on the other hand, the labor inspector finds a breach of the conditions for running an employment agency, he should immediately inform the marshal of the relevant voivodship about this fact.

PIP control - end of the procedure

After the inspection is completed, the labor inspector should prepare a report on the inspection. It includes i.a. description of identified violations of the law and other information that has a significant impact on the result of control activities. If, during the inspection, the labor inspector does not find any breach of the law or other deficiencies, he is not obliged to prepare a report. Instead, it should issue an official note in which it will include a concise description of the facts ascertained during the inspection.