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Sending Western Union cash to friends in Poland - questions


eberhart 13 | 120
23 Dec 2011 #1
I am planning to send cash via Western Union to some friends in Poland. On my end there is no issue but I wonder about on their end as far as taxes and receiving the money. Does Western Union there report it to the tax service? And if so what are the triggering amounts that would cause them problems? Like is there a limit or number of transfers that would have them flagged for being checked up on? I know with the "War on Terror" etc cash movements are a point of hassle so don't want to cause problems if I can break it up in smaller amounts etc. I am not sure how a money transfer is considered by the Polish tax service...if its income etc and is reported by the Western Union or bank to the government. Don't want to make trouble for them.
bullfrog 6 | 602
23 Dec 2011 #2
I never understood why anyone would use Western Union for money transfers.. Their prices are extortionate compared to most banks..
sa11y 5 | 331
23 Dec 2011 #3
Now - I'm probably asking for trouble here, but apparently sex services are not taxed :) This sound like a big joke (and I'm not even sure if it's true) but apparently a good way to avoid taxes is to declare earning as income from prostitution... As far as this does not involve soliciting or organised activity this is apparently legal... I know a friend of mine who was once prepared to explain he undeclared income like this (this was when she was earning her salary abroad where she was illegally employed, before Poland becoming part of EU). Luckily she was never questioned...

Now the real problem - how do you convince your friend ;)
Other that that there is also "darowizna" - as far as I know this is not taxed (but I'm not sure about the limit) - it will be easier for your friends to find out what they can and cannot receive.
gero - | 11
23 Dec 2011 #4
All i know about Western Union cash every country have here rules so you have to go to Western Union in your country and ask them. For example in EGYPT you have limite to transfer per day Max. 5000$ and they take from you commission 50$ for every 1000$ with max commission 200$ for 4000$ or 5000$, and you will not make trouble for them.
JonnyM 11 | 2,620
23 Dec 2011 #5
Does Western Union there report it to the tax service?

No. No problem. Western Union only know the name (and will need to see the person's ID) but they don't report anything to the tax office unless they are told to.

The person collecting the money will need to give the amount (and what currency it's in), the control number your name and the country you're sending it from. No address is necessary in Poland. They will of course record the person's ID number when collecting the money.

And if so what are the triggering amounts that would cause them problems?

If it was a bank, 15000 Euros would be the triggering amount. Western Union probably have to follow that rule, however I used them the other day to send something to Poland and I don't remember their website mentioning it.

Like is there a limit or number of transfers that would have them flagged for being checked up on?

See above. If the person collects the money from a branch of a bank that has Western Union facilities, that bank might have their own rules about payments. How much were you thinking of sending?

I am not sure how a money transfer is considered by the Polish tax service...if its income etc and is reported by the Western Union or bank to the government.

In theory gifts should be declared by the recipient (as Sa11y says, the darowizna rule allows smaller ones to be tax free under some circumstances) however declaring gifts is the personal duty of the recipient when they fill in their tax return. Sending by Western Union should be OK and you shouldn't worry.

I never understood why anyone would use Western Union for money transfers.. Their prices are extortionate compared to most banks..

Speed and relative privacy. And actually not extortionate if you're in certain countries where Western Union is cheaper than the banks. Or if your bank isn't a correspondent bank to the one you're sending to. Plus of course the contents of a Polish bank account are not private, and if the person owes some money to the state (for example ZUS) their bank account may be frozen.
bullfrog 6 | 602
23 Dec 2011 #6
And actually not extortionate if you're in certain countries where Western Union is cheaper than the banks. Or if your bank isn't a correspondent bank to the one you're sending to

Well, if you're sending euros from a SEPA country (eurozone plus a couple of others countries such as Poland, Switzerland.;) to another SEPA country, the cost is normally zero. If you want to send PLN to Poland, send euros to the recipient's bank account, then the recipient takes it from the account in cash and exchanges throught a kantor. Much cheaper than western union..
delphiandomine 88 | 18,455
23 Dec 2011 #7
If you want to send PLN to Poland, send euros to the recipient's bank account, then the recipient takes it from the account in cash and exchanges throught a kantor.

Is it actually possible to withdraw Euro from the bank in Poland?
bullfrog 6 | 602
23 Dec 2011 #8
Of course, if the account is in euros..
JonnyM 11 | 2,620
23 Dec 2011 #9
Well, if you're sending euros from a SEPA country (eurozone plus a couple of others countries such as Poland, Switzerland.;) to another SEPA country, the cost is normally zero. If you want to send PLN to Poland, send euros to the recipient's bank account, then the recipient takes it from the account in cash and exchanges throught a kantor. Much cheaper than western union..

If you're sending it from outside the Eurozone (i.e. most of the world) it's rather different. And if the banks use an agency, you have to pay the agency fee. Western Union is still cheaper. And much quicker.
Seanus 15 | 19,706
23 Dec 2011 #10
I have the benefit of having a SKOK centre near me. I only need to show my passport and MTCN number whereas I'd have to fill out forms in a busy bank and wait. No taxes my end, only a handling fee borne by my parents.
delphiandomine 88 | 18,455
23 Dec 2011 #11
Of course, if the account is in euros..

Wow. I didn't think it was possible for some reason...

I wonder if you can also deposit in Euro? If so...
bullfrog 6 | 602
23 Dec 2011 #12
and yes, you can also deposit in euros (and also in USD, GBP etc provided your account is in the same currency..)
Wroclaw 44 | 5,384
23 Dec 2011 #13
Of course, if the account is in euros..

the account may be in euro, but it doesn't mean that the bank has euro on the premises. and the hole-in the-wall doesn't dish them out.

doesn't the bank automatically convert to zł ?

edit: i see that you have answered my point.
delphiandomine 88 | 18,455
23 Dec 2011 #14
and yes, you can also deposit in euros (and also in USD, GBP etc provided your account is in the same currency..)

Bah.

I never thought to even ask, and here was me withdrawing cash and converting to PLN when it could just have been taken out in EUR for trips to Germany. Bah indeed.
Wroclaw 44 | 5,384
23 Dec 2011 #15
Bah indeed.

same thought. i've just had some cash sent. now it's too late. fcuk!
bullfrog 6 | 602
23 Dec 2011 #16
doesn't the bank automatically convert to zł ?

no

the account may be in euro, but it doesn't mean that the bank has euro on the premises. and the hole-in the-wall doesn't dish them out.

Most banks (at least in Warsaw) will have a reasonable sized float in euros (and USD etc) on their premises. Of course, if you intend to draw 50,000€, you should warn them in advance, usually 24h or 48 h is enough..
Wroclaw 44 | 5,384
23 Dec 2011 #17
bullfrog,

you've given some very useful info, which to me wasn't so obvious. thanks.
delphiandomine 88 | 18,455
23 Dec 2011 #19
you've given some very useful info, which to me wasn't so obvious. thanks.

Indeed, thank you!
Harry
23 Dec 2011 #20
Most banks (at least in Warsaw) will have a reasonable sized float in euros (and USD etc) on their premises. Of course, if you intend to draw 50,000€, you should warn them in advance, usually 24h or 48 h is enough..

However, if you don't give them notice and what you actually want to do is convert your largish amount of EUR (or whatever) into PLN, you can get an exchange rate which is above the mid-rate!
Seanus 15 | 19,706
23 Dec 2011 #21
Seriously, look for a regional centre with the WU sign but I think SKOK is purely a Silesian thing. It's really hassle free and safe. French Connection United Kingdom, Wrocław? ;) ;)

If you find such a thing, OP, you don't need to go with the expected amount. In the bank I went to, I had to write that down as a mandatory field. In SKOK, all they need is your passport no and MTCN. Simple!
OP eberhart 13 | 120
24 Dec 2011 #22
Thanks everyone especially JonnyM.

I know banks often trigger at around 10,000usd and it would be amounts less than this (maybe 6000 or so USD a few times when I can afford it, and not every week for the whole year or something regular. I just didn't want to cause problems for them if the transfers were reported to the tax service and suddenly someone was asking them why they are getting money from abroad. Since you have to show ID I figured they recorded it and reported it to the tax office. We all know how governments like to spend time hassling normal people under the guise of terrorism etc. Just doing my due diligence so a good deed doesn't turn into something that hurts someone.
Nurit negby
2 Aug 2014 #23
What is the max amount I can withdraw from western union in Poland?
gumishu 11 | 5,740
2 Aug 2014 #24
I am not sure if it is still valid but an article from 2007 stated that you can send maximum 7,5 thousand dollars which is about 23,5 thousand PLN
cms 9 | 1,255
2 Aug 2014 #25
With moneygram its 10.000 zloty so presume western union around the same. But of course you need to know the outlet is going to have that cash - thats not always a given so maybe call them first


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