My name is Grzegorz Kazimierz Walkowski and I was born in 1965.
I graduated in 1989 from Nicolaus Copernicus University (a prestigious Faculty of Law and Administration).
I was influenced primarly by Prof Dr Wiesław Lang, an eminent theorist on the notion of the State and the Law, and by famous theorist of the Criminal Law Prof Dr Marian Filar (the co-author of numerous acts and a member of Polish Parliament and Senate).
In addition I have worked as a research fellow at Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń. Since the political changes in Poland (in 1989) I set up my own company and worked as a tax consultant focusing on a specific branch of law, namely General Tax Law.
Over the years I calculated at least 250 million PLN (about 100 million US dollars) of taxes.
I have thereby gained unique experience and skills which I wish to present in my book and share with a wider readership. The work will encompass an analysis of the interconnection between theoretical thought and practice in implementing tax law.
Before the expiry of six months from the first edition of this book, she found herself in the resources and collections of the most important state institutions, including parliament and the central bank and all the Polish universities and law faculties.
System of Polish Tax Law
(Preface to international publications)
Law is a product of culture which is a derivative of the way of thinking about the world created on the basis on relations with people among themselves and among people and the environment. It is highly probable that it includes also a specific set of features conditioned genetically.
Polish legal thought uses the output of noble culture which guaranteed the landowners smaller or wider spectrum of rights emphasizing the fact that noble culture means culture of landlords farming on their own farmlands (a grange).
This group of people deriving from knighthood in the first centuries of the development of law in Poland provided constant usage of law based on a habit (secular common law).
Law in Poland (in particular the constitutional one) is based on the principles of free election - the first principle in Europe of elected dynasty or rulers acting as kings.
Law implemented in Poland constitutes the international law because since the 14th century it has been based on assumptions concerning international cooperation of two totally separate states - Poland and Lithuania connected in one state.
Poland, a participant of the Polish-Lithuania Commonwealth is a leader of civilization development of lands which can be compared in terms of geography to France and Spain together.
It is worth mentioning that electing a ruler of Poland who was not a Pole strongly consolidated and systematized Polish law being a guarantee of specific law and tax privileges of its participants.
Undoubtedly, the existence of numerous legal privileges including the tax ones is an immanent feature of the Polish law.
Polish law was created on the basis of Catholic thinking concerning creation of the state expressed in beliefs of all Polish kings included also in the idea of Catholic universities, deriving from monasteries settled on Polish lands at the beginning of the Polish state. Canon law was legally binding in Poland with secular law.
Polish legal thought does not deny such a history.
It does not deny also the impact on the way of thinking about the state and the law had an election a subject of the Emperor of Prussia - Katherine the Great - to be the queen of the Russian Empire - a women with hostile attitude towards the Polish nation and state, making use of indecisive politics of the last king of Poland - Stanisław August Poniatowski and using the lack of common idea for the state among the Polish aristocracy, the main architect of partition of the Polish state at the end of the 18th century.
Due to all these reasons and many others such as the marriage of the greatest Polish king of the Jagiellonian dynasty with the queen Bona Sforza coming from Italy or later following the liberal theories of law, in particular the Austrian one focusing on Habsburg family, followed by a part of Polish thinkers of the 19th century the Polish legal thought is not unanimous as it derives from a tradition of subjection to Catholic Rome, the rights of all nations (ius gentium - output of the 15th century), not created in full the law of Imperium Polonarum and Russian law - followed in accordance with the German law and liberal law created by Austrian law from the period of Habsburgs' dynasty dominance.
The Napoleonic Code also had a great impact on the Polish legal thought, in particular in civil and family law implemented in Poland at the beginning of the 19th century when the army of the French Empire entered the state as a unifying element of this state.
In the result of the abovementioned the Polish legal thought was forced to define itself while at the beginning of the 20th century under the leadership of socialistic and national leaders such as Józef Piłsudski and Roman Dmowski with the bayonets of thousand of Polish casualties it had to enter by force the saloons of international policy using the support of Ignacy Paderewski- an advisor of the then leaders of international politics of the USA.
In times when every third soldier of the German Empire fighting in the First World War was Polish, the imperial superpowers based on reserves from colonies - France and England - still believed that the world would be created in accordance with their opinions not knowing or not wanting to know the historical truth - decreased the meaning of Poland in the European international politics.
Such negatively promoted Polish culture, including the Polish legal thought, was not appreciated in terms of international relations and discriminated by crucial players of international politics at the beginning of the 20 century, in fact till the obvious disaster of this international politics - signing the Munich Agreement meaning practical partition of the Czech state.
Leading Polish universities such as the Jagiellonian University in Cracow, Jan Kazimierz University in Lviv and Stefan Batory university in Vilno, after gaining independence by Poland at the beginning of the 20th century tried to integrate Polish law and develop the legal thought. Apart from that, also other direction of Slavs' thinking, in particular the Polish school of mathematics and logic are worth mentioning.
The period of the twenties and thirties of the 20th century has not provided any significant development for the Polish legal thought. It was rather a period of integration after partitions - an attempt to consolidate three various legal norms. In this period a great number of Polish Jews had an impact on the Polish legal thought.
It is important that referring to the Polish law in terms of regulating obligatory relations to the law resulting from the Napoleonic Code meant using the Roman law once again.
Regulation of the law concerning the business entities was based rather on the Roman law than on the German one.
The end of the thirties of the 20th century was a period of internal conflicts of national direction of the Polish legal thought with the legal thought of the Polish Jews who after numerous anti-Semitic speeches at Polish universities felt less integrated with the Polish state.
These facts are not so important as the way of treating Jews at universities of other European states just before the Second World War.
The great Second World War meant for the Poles enormous in terms of history scale destruction of Polish intelligence. During this period the scientific staff of Polish universities, teachers, priests, officers, policemen, members of palaestra and many noble families have been murdered. In the Warsaw Uprising the intelligence from Warsaw have been killed. The Jewish intelligence have been exterminated by the Nazists.
Coming back to life once again within 30 years the Polish nationality has been occupied by the Soviet Army.
What is strange, solutions implemented before the war have been used, probably in the result of a specific course of international politics and made use of the code of obligations created before the war. In some sense the Roman law from the Napoleonic Code has been used in Poland. The canon law despite temporary repressive measures have been implemented without any problems.
In these circumstances the Polish legal system was coming back to life which in fact till the end of the seventies of the 20th century has not created any independent general tax pattern. New legal mechanisms in terms of taxation referred mainly to state companies as they were dominating and in fact one organizational form of the Polish capital. The regulations concerning capital companies other than the state ones have been preserved only due to the necessity of international legal turnover and they have not been used in national law.
Developing failure of the national management system being a result of international economic sanctions imposed by the civilized countries on the military junta of General Jaruzelski organized a military revolution in 1981 and tried to implement more or less successful attempts to save Polish economy, in particular by equalizing forms of taxation of the national and private sector, although the first one used numerous hidden tax privileges.
However, the last decade of the 20th century brought at least formal equality in terms of taxation which was becoming a common value.
It is obvious that in such circumstances strictly academic definitions of tax assuming its common use did not match the existing economic reality at that time which was consciously omitted by major part of the then scientific staff working by the way for the secret political police.
This element of Polish peculiarity is crucial in order to understand legal relations in Poland till the date Poland joined the European Union.
Due to the abovementioned a dichotomy of legal relations was created. Formally, despite this legal elements of favoring the state sector, the legal relations were still diverse and closed and divided into those which were protected by the political police and the others which were not protected.
The first group of relations meant economic operations damaging the Polish national interest due to a deep penetration into the structure of Polish authorities by spies both from the East and the West.
Summing up, the abovementioned determiners of development of the Polish legal thought lead to specific attitude towards economic turnover which finally should be treated as a very pathological one.
Moreover, penetration of the secret police and secret agencies was so strong that it had an impact not only on the contracts functioning in economic turnover of international character influencing the shape of the most significant regulations but also lead to selective usage of tax regulations.
In such a situation the tax law has been used as en element of political and economic fight.
Undoubtedly, a wide formalism of the Polish tax law and related issues is the result of pathological situations and finally it becomes an obstacle for the development of Polish economy.
Tax law in Poland has still another feature which is unknown to stabilized legal system, as it is not addressed to a specific group of specialists in specific sphere of legal systems but to a group constituting approximately 15% of the whole population.
It is truth that the Polish legal system, including the tax system had a destructive impact on economic processes which could be protected from it only by mass acting which is difficult to be specified.
In my opinion which is based on a long-term practice current Polish tax law can be characterized as the law which is too much formalized, restrictive in reference to entities participating in it, unpredictable in terms of evolution, generally not competitive to any other law used in neighbouring states being members of the European Union and moreover, it includes corruption elements. Due to the abovementioned it can be stated that the system of Polish tax law can be assessed as unfavorable for economic development.
(The author planned 7 Volumes of 800 pages each written in Polish.
Volume VI which has already been published (as part 1 and 2) includes a translation and that is why it consists of approximately 1000 pages.
Volume I shall consist of the same number of pages - approximately 1000.
Volume VII shall probably consists of two parts - each of the parts shall include 600 - 700 pages (as it refers to the history of sources of the Polish tax law).
Predicted dates for publishing the volumes:
Volume I - February 2012
Volume IV - August 2012
Volume V - January 2013
Volume II or Volume VII - August/ October 2013
Volume II or Volume VII - March/ April 2013
Volume VI other parts - till the end of 2013.
First publications shall be published in hard covers.
Each Volume will cost 200 USD.)