How Much Debt Collector Can Take ? Check On Your Own!


There are many reasons why paying off debts and maintaining financial liquidity is complicated and unpleasant. One of these ills is the lack of money – what should I pay back if I do not have any savings? Unfortunately, this is a problem in many Polish homes … What to do when winning a lottery is a rather fleeting dream, and the bailiff is just waiting to grab some of the income and at the moment when … you are on sick leave! Does he have the right to do so?  


 Remember – bailiff can do anything!  


Almost! The issue of what he can and can not take away is determined by the Labor Code. However, sometimes recipes can make a debtor in the proverbial “horse” – because they are either contradictory or too convoluted to be able to understand them clearly. We’ve tried to solve the mystery tormenting many indebted payers.  

According to Polish law, sickness benefit , i.e. L4, can be taken by a bailiff in the case of non-maintenance (25% of the benefit) and alimony (60%). It is well regulated by the rules of the Act on retirees and pensions from the Social Insurance Fund, dated 17.12.1998. This means that during bailiff’s execution, L4 is not treated as remuneration for work – so it is not paid by the employer and ZUS! Therefore, it does not cover the provisions of the Code of Civil Procedure. What’s more, it was not placed in it as an article protecting from bailiffs’ execution.

What deductions are subject to enforcement?  


In order to understand the whole legitimacy of debt relief execution, the debtor must become familiar with its precise definition. So L4 is nothing but a benefit that people who are covered by compulsory sickness insurance are entitled to . However, payers may also buy it as part of a voluntary sickness policy – subject to the payment of contributions paid to ZUS.  

Therefore, all benefits, such as parental, sickness and care allowances, maternity and rehabilitation supplements, are subject to bailiff enforcement pursuant to enforcement titles other than alimony , up to 25% of the benefit. Also includes advances allocated to the employee and fines specified in art. 108 of the Labor Code. This is even more precisely regulated in the Act on retirees and pensions, art. 140. in which the limits of such deductions are set.

Types of deductions:

Types of deductions:

Deductions referred to in art. 139 may be made, subject to art. 141 within:
1. Maintenance allowances referred to in art. 139 receivables deducted from the obligations set out in the Act of 1 point 3 – up to 60% of the benefit
2. Receivables due in connection with (up to 50% of the benefit):
– for payment for staying in social welfare homes and for staying in care and treatment institutions,
– payment for a stay in nursing and care facilities,
3.Other enforced receivables, such as loans, loans or payday loans – up to 25% of the benefit.

It is clear from the regulations that the enforcer can take up to 3/5 of the allowance if it concerns overdue maintenance payments and ¼ if the claims refer to an unpaid loan, loan or payday. Remember also that the enforcement proceedings pending for non-maintenance claims – can not exceed the amount of free (equal part of the allowance, after deduction of the advance payment for income tax)!

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How much bailiff can take …  

How much bailiff can take ...  

The time in which the debtor is on sick leave is the period in which his income is “upset” by 20%. He does not receive a full 100% remuneration for a full month of work. Therefore, the sickness benefit L4 paid by ZUS is subject to proceedings by the bailiff …  

The amount of compensation that an enforcer will receive depends on the above-mentioned art. 140. Thus, in the case of enforcement of maintenance claims, the deduction is made up to 3/5 of the remuneration. However, in this case, the legislator did not specify the amount free from seizure. However, during the bailiff proceedings of other debts – the sum free from seizure in 2018 is PLN 1,530. This is the minimum wage for people who work full time. And this is after deduction of social security contributions and income tax. Simply put – when enforcement of benefits other than maintenance takes place , at the disposal of the debtor working under a contract of employment must remain 50% of income, but not less than 1530 PLN!

And when you are employed part-time? In this situation, the amount free from deductions is adequate to the working time.

However, there are some exceptions!  

However, there are some exceptions!  

Although bailiffs’ activities continually evoke many emotions and conjectures, it is worth to follow internet forums when interpreting the rules. They are filled with debtors’ problems, including young mothers who have an enforcer on their backs. Keep in mind that when you take social allowance from ZUS, including L4, there is an amount free from deductions relating to:  

  • To non-monthly debtors – 60% of the lowest pension  
  • For maintenance debtors – 50% of the lowest pension  

In 2018, the minimum pension is 1 thousand. PLN gross, or PLN 853,84 net. Which means that an enforcer of this amount has the right to take away your sickness benefit due! 

Art. 141. Executions and deductions from pensions ( Dz.U.2018.0.1270, Act of 17 December 1998 on pensions and disability benefits from the Social Insurance Fund):
1. The amount of old-age and disability pension free from enforcement and deductions, subject to paragraph 2, is PLN 500 – when deducting:

  • receivables referred to in art. 139, receivables withheld from the benefits specified in the Act 1 point 3, including costs and enforcement fees,  
  • receivables referred to in art. 139, receivables withheld from the benefits specified in the Act 1 point 4;

2. 825 zł – the deductions of charges referred to in Article. 139, receivables withheld from the benefits specified in the Act 1 point 5, including costs and enforcement fees;

PLN 3,660 – when deducting the amounts due as referred to in art. 139, receivables withheld from the benefits specified in the Act 1 points 1, 2 and 6-9;

PLN 4,200 – when deducting the amounts due as referred to in art. 139, receivables withheld from the benefits specified in the Act 1 point 10.
– The amounts referred to in paragraph 1, are subject to annual indexation from March 1 on the terms specified for pensions.

If you find yourself in a situation where your amount would exceed the above-mentioned limits, you can always complain about the bailiff’s actions together with demanding the return of the unfairly sought benefit.

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A great summary!  

A great summary!  

The end of the year is a great time for great summaries and reflections! That’s why you have to remember that the salary for work and the allowance L4 are two independent laws! And YES – they can be enforced … Only the minimum salary amount is free of bailiffs. In other cases, the enforcer must conduct his proceedings within the limits set out in the Labor Code. We therefore hope that both sides of the “conflict” will reach a mutual agreement, which will not radically affect the deterioration of relations between them, and, above all, will not radically deteriorate the financial situation of the debtor.


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