Exemption from paying KRUS contributions
Payment of social and health insurance contributions is compulsory in principle in every case of running a business. This also applies to small, medium and large farmers. Of course, the legislator provided for exceptions to this rule - so when is it not necessary to pay contributions to KRUS? Is it possible to be exempt from paying KRUS contributions?
What is KRUS?
KRUS is the equivalent of ZUS, which can be used by all persons running an agricultural business. In practice, contributions paid to KRUS are much more favorable than those paid to ZUS (they are a lower cost for a given entrepreneur).
KRUS is the abbreviation of the name Kasa Rolniczego Ubezpieczenia Społecznego (Agricultural Social Insurance Fund - KRUS) - the institution responsible for farmers' insurance, from which payments are made, among others, retirement, disability or accident benefits for all persons insured there.
Being subject to insurance offered by KRUS is not a simple task - it is necessary to prove the status of a farmer and conducting activities related to running a farm.
Art. 2 of the Farmers' Social Insurance Act
1. The insurance is provided by the Agricultural Social Insurance Fund, hereinafter referred to as "the Fund".
2. The President of the Fund is the central body of government administration, reporting to the minister competent for rural development.
The interests of the entirety of the insured and the beneficiaries concerning insurance and the activities of the 3. Fund are represented by the Farmers 'Social Insurance Council, hereinafter referred to as the "Farmers' Council".
4. The bodies of the Social Insurance Institution, hereinafter referred to as the "Institution", and other entities also participate in the implementation of the insurance, to the extent specified in the Act and in separate regulations.
As in the case of contributions paid to ZUS, farmers also have to pay their financial obligations to KRUS. According to the content of Art. 4 sec. 1 and 2 of the Act of 20 December 1990 on farmers' social insurance, the insurance premiums for each insured person are paid by the farmer. If the agricultural activity is run for the account of several people, the obligation to pay the premium is jointly and severally liable to them. The obligation to pay the premium arises from the date on which the insurance arose, and ceases from the date on which it terminates.
Judgment of the SA in Białystok of December 13, 2017 (file reference number III AUa 466/17)
There are no provisions in Polish legislation stipulating that each owner of a farm is subject to social insurance for farmers. Under the Act, only the farmer is covered by this insurance.
The conditions for being subject to social insurance for farmers are the same for all farmers and anyone who does not run agricultural activity on land exceeding 1 conversion ha is not subject to agricultural insurance under the Act. It is worth recalling here that contributions to KRUS are paid quarterly according to the following schedule:
- until January 31 for the first quarter,
- by April 30 for the second quarter,
- until July 31 for the third quarter,
- until October 31 for the fourth quarter. Start a free 30-day trial period with no strings attached!
Exemption from KRUS contributions
In the case of paying contributions to ZUS, entrepreneurs can take advantage of a 6-month exemption under the so-called allowances for the start, and then from the 2-year period of the small ZUS (social insurance contributions are then paid in a lower amount). Recently, the obligation to pay contributions has also been suspended due to the restrictions related to the coronavirus pandemic in Poland.
Remember that all social security contributions (regardless of whether they are paid to ZUS or KRUS) must be transferred in accordance with the applicable deadlines. Otherwise, the insurance company has the right to charge late payment interest for each day of delay, starting from the day following the due date.
In fact, people who are subject to agricultural social insurance do not have the opportunity to take advantage of the allowances for new entrepreneurs, as is the case with those insured by the Social Insurance Institution (ZUS). The only exemption that the legislator offers is the situation related to the coronavirus pandemic. In practice, this means that the obligation to regularly pay contributions to KRUS is not subject to any exemption, even in the case of farmers who are just starting their activity. It is assumed that the amount of contributions to KRUS is already too low compared to contributions paid to ZUS - so there is no justification for their temporary suspension or reduction.
KRUS contributions and COVID-19
The exemption from paying KRUS contributions was valid only in the second quarter of 2020, i.e. until the end of July this year. The provisions to avoid the mandatory payment were introduced on the basis of the Act of March 31, 2020 amending the Act on special solutions related to the prevention, prevention and combating of COVID-19, other infectious diseases and crisis situations caused by them, and certain other acts.
Thanks to the above regulation, the contribution for the second quarter of 2020 was paid for all farmers from the state budget. It was done through the Agricultural Social Insurance Fund. It is worth adding here, however, that the exemption in question did not apply to all contributions paid to KRUS. Farmers did not have to pay contributions for retirement and disability insurance, those intended for accident, sickness, maternity and health insurance, had to be regulated according to the usual rules hitherto (i.e. by the insured farmers themselves).
Currently, this exemption is no longer available to any farmer. In practice, this means that contributions for the third and fourth quarter of 2020 must be paid in accordance with the statutory schedule. Fortunately, their amount is not excessive - in the fourth quarter it is exactly PLN 42 per month.
Exemption from paying KRUS contributions in the future
Currently, we do not know whether the exemption from paying KRUS contributions will be renewed by the Polish government. Taking into account the deteriorating condition of the national and global economy caused by the restrictions related to the coronavirus pandemic, such a solution is unlikely (especially since the amount of social security contributions for farmers is small compared to the contributions of entrepreneurs conducting non-agricultural activity).
Exemption from paying KRUS contributions is not possible under the current legal system. The only exception to this rule was the introduction of regulations that allowed farmers to withdraw from payments for the second quarter of 2020 (only in part of contributions for retirement and disability insurance). In other words, entrepreneurs dealing with farms cannot count on exemptions due to commencement of the first activity or carrying it out for a period of 2 years - as is the case with exemptions and allowances applied by the Social Insurance Institution. Any possible changes to the applicable regulations are announced by the legislator in advance - until the end of 2020, premiums for the third and fourth quarters must be paid in full by farmers themselves (i.e. in the amount of PLN 42 per month).