I am an elderly person at risk. I try not to leave home in fear of a coronavirus infection. I have just received a negative decision on granting a temporary residence permit. Can I lodge an appeal after the threat has passed or is the 14-day period binding?

Due to the fact that a state of an epidemic emergency was introduced on March 14th, followed by introducing a state of an epidemic, all administrative time limits have been suspended after the last of these states is lifted (epidemic emergency/epidemic). However, those regulations have been repelled by the Act of May 14th of 2020 r. on the amendments of certain Acts with regards to preventive measures due to the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus (Dz. U. [Polish Journal of Laws] 2019 item 875). Beginning on May 23rd of 2020, the time limits in administrative cases shall commence, or – in the case of suspended time limits – shall continue its course. That also applies to the time limits for lodging an appeal. In the case of that period, the person lodging the appeal must do so within 14 days after receiving the decision.

You can lodge an appeal within 14 days after May 23rd of 2020, if the beginning of this period would fall during the state of an epidemic/epidemic emergency (i.e. from 14th March of 2020). For instance, if you have received the negative decision on March 20th, under typical circumstances the time limit for an appeal would lapse on April 3rd of 2020. However, because the time limit was suspended and will start running again from May 23rd of 2020, you will need to submit an appeal on May 23rd of 2020.

However, if the decision has become final earlier, prior to the crisis – for instance on March 9th and the time limit for lodging an appeal was suspended on March 14th (i.e. 4 days after the initial date), you still have 10 days counting from May 23rd of 2020. In addition, please remember that if the final day of the time limit is a Saturday or a public holiday, the time limit lapses on the first working day after.