Polish identity card

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Polish national identity card
(Dowód osobisty)
Polish national ID card (front and back)
Issued by  Poland
Valid in

 European Union member states
European Free Trade Association member states

 San Marino
  Vatican City
 Bosnia and Herzegovina
Type of document Identity card,
travel document for passport in the listed countries

Every Polish citizen 18 years of age or older residing permanently in Poland must have an Identity Card (Dowód osobisty) issued by the local Office of Civic Affairs. Polish citizens living permanently abroad are entitled, but not required, to have one. Identity cards are valid for a period of 10 years (5 years for individuals under the age of 5 on the date of issue).

The front bears a photo of the owner, his/her given name(s), surname, date of birth, parents' names and gender. It also contains the coat of arms of the Republic of Poland and a security hologram. In the right down corner a special security element can be found - the photo of the person and the year of expiration, but only one of them can be shown, depending on the angle of looking.

On the back can be found the owner's nationality, place of birth, date of issue, date of expiry, card number, issuing authority and personal number (PESEL - Powszechny Elektroniczny Spis Ewidencji Ludności - Universal Electronic Population Database). Below the card number is the repeated owner's photo and the data in machine-readable form.

The Polish identity card is a travel document inside the European Union and, additionally, non-EU-member countries within the Schengen area - Norway, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Vatican City, San Marino and Monaco. Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania and Northern Cyprus allow Polish citizens to utilize the card for travel as well.


The card number consists of 3 letters followed by 6 digits (for example, ABA300000), of which the first digit (at position 4) is the check digit.

Each letter has a numerical value, as shown below:

 A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z
10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35

The next step is to multiply each so obtained value by its respective "weight". The assigned weights for each position are

 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
 7 3 1 0 7 3 1 7 3

The remainder of the division by 10 of the sum of the weighted values should be equal to the check digit (indicated between asterisks in the example below).

Verification example (ID card number for this example: ABA300000):

Card number:  A    B    A   *3*   0    0    0    0    0
Value:       10   11   10   *3*   0    0    0    0    0
Weight:       7    3    1    0    7    3    1    7    3
Result:      70   33   10    0    0    0    0    0    0
Sum:         70 + 33 + 10 +  0 +  0 +  0 +  0 +  0 +  0 = 113

The remainder of the division of 113 by 10 equals 3 (113 mod 10 = 3), and is also equal to the first digit of the ID card number, so this ID card number is correct.

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