Authorisation to establish a bank

modification date 18 January 2019

The decision to grant authorisation to establish a bank is issued by the Polish Financial Supervision Authority after the completion of administrative proceedings, to which the provisions of the Administrative Procedure Code apply. In such proceedings, on the basis of documents and information collected, the Polish Financial Supervision Authority establishes and assesses whether there are any grounds for denying authorisation to establish a bank. In accordance with Article 37 of the Banking Law, the Polish Financial Supervision Authority refuses to issue authorisation to establish a bank if the requirements for the establishment of banks have not been fulfilled, or the bank’s intended activities would violate the law, the interests of clients, or would not guarantee the security of funds held at the bank, or if the provisions of law applicable in the place of residence or registered office of a founder, or their relations with other entities could prevent the effective supervision of the bank. Should at least one of the above-mentioned grounds exist, the Polish Financial Supervision Authority is required to refuse to grant authorisation to establish a bank. Such refusal is expressed in the form of a written administrative decision, in which the reasons of refusal are explained in detail. The founders, if dissatisfied with the KNF’s decision, have the right to apply legal remedies, including the submission of the decision of the Polish Financial Supervision Authority to judicial and administrative review.

If the above-mentioned grounds for denying authorisation to establish a bank do not exist, the Polish Financial Supervision Authority is required to issue such authorisation, also in the form of a written administrative decision. In accordance with Article 34(1) of the Banking Law, in the document of authorisation to establish a bank, the Polish Financial Supervision Authority defines: the bank’s business name, its registered office, the names of the founders and shares subscribed by them, the amount of the initial capital, the activities the bank is authorised to carry out, and conditions on which the Polish Financial Supervision Authority authorises the bank to commence its activities, and approves the bank’s draft articles of association and the composition of the bank’s first management board. Having obtained authorisation, the founders may establish a bank (form a cooperative, a joint-stock company) and register it in the National Court Register. Then, the bank prepares to commence its activity, which should take place within a year from the date on which the authorisation to establish a bank was granted, otherwise the authorisation expires. The bank must notify the Bank Guarantee Fund that the bank has been entered in the National Court Register.