The article attempts to develop a preliminary practical framework for urban criteria in terms of the population, economy and spatial location of the smallest towns in Poland. Despite being of little significance, the fact that they lie near the border between being rural settlements and towns makes them an interesting subject for research and more detailed analysis. The current phenomenon of urban status being obtained by ever-smaller settlements is causing conceptual disorder. Therefore, the article may serve as an early contribution to a discussion about the need to define and unify urban criteria on a national scale. The qualitative and descriptive guidelines contained in official acts are insufficient and too general, which is why quantitative methods were used in the present research. Despite the limited data available, research on the topic of urbanity has proven the imperfection of the Polish administrative system and confirmed the premise that town status may be conferred inappropriately in numerous cases.