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Belgium Work Visa Application

Belgium Work Visa Application – Belgium Immigration

Belgium work visa application, is one Europe’s most attractive immigration destinations. The central European state offers economic and political stability, with a relatively low tax regime supported by many exemptions. Belgium also boasts a high-class quality of life and a safe and healthy environment, with a historic and cultural heritage that is one of the most respected in the world.

To legally live and work in Belgium certain nationalities require a Belgian work permit and, depending on the length of stay in Belgium, a Belgian residence permit may also be required. There are three different types of Belgian work permits, as well as exemptions depending on the employment conditions of your work in Belgium. Belgium work visa application

The Belgian work visa is closely linked to your residence status in Belgium; this means, in most cases, a job will need to be arranged before you can apply for any kind of permit to live and work in Belgium. It is thus advised to first find a job in Belgium or start a business or as a self-employed worker in Belgium, before you consider applying for either a residence or work permit in Belgium, or see if you qualify for another type of Belgian permit.

Belgium work permit updates

  • The Belgian government increased the minimum salary requirements in 2017 to qualify for a Belgian work permit B or Blue Card.
  • The Belgian government is in the process of transposing an European Union (EU) directive, aimed at providing a single permit for non-EU employees to work in multiple branches of an EU-based multinational company; implementation has already taking longer than the 2016 deadline, however, it is predicted to bring significant change to Belgium’s work permit procedures.
  • Previous restrictions on newer EU member Croatia were lifted and citizens no longer require a work permit for Belgium.

Who can work in Belgium? – EU/EEA and Swiss nationals

Citizens from the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA – EU plus Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) and Switzerland can work freely in Belgium without the need for a Belgian work permit. Belgium work visa application.

Non-EU/EEA/Swiss nationals

In principle a Belgian work permit is required for any non-EU/EEA/Swiss national coming to work in Belgium. There are exceptions, however, depending on the nature of activities or residence status of the foreigner. For example, scientific researchers or those holding permanent residence permits entitling indefinite stay in Belgium are exempt from requiring a Belgian work permit. In many cases, the right to a Belgian work permit will also be granted to family members (such as a spouse or child) of successful applicants who are granted Belgian residency.

Types of work permit in Belgium – Belgium Work Visa application

There are three types of work permit in Belgium, and it depends on your situation as to which Belgian work permit is required. Below is an explanation of the different work permit for Belgium.

Belgian work permit A: A work permit A is valid for all employers and paid occupations in Belgium and is valid indefinitely – that is, you can work for any employer in Belgium for any amount of time – and conditions are stricter. Typically the employee must apply themselves.

To get a type A Belgian work permit, you must prove you have worked for four years on a type B Belgian work permit within a 10-year, uninterrupted legal stay in Belgium. ‘Uninterrupted’ is defined as not being outside of Belgium for longer than one year between your Belgian residency periods. It’s only three years to qualify if you’re a national of Algeria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, Morocco, Serbia, Tunisia and Turkey. These periods of three and four year can be reduced by one year if your spouse, registered partner or dependent children are living with you in Belgium.

Some types of workers can’t apply for a type A Belgian work permit, including:

  • highly skilled workers
  • Au pairs
  • trainees
  • workers on temporary assignment
  • researchers and guest professors
  • specialized technicians
  • family members of people who hold type B permits, are self-employed, or who don’t need work permits.
European Blue Card – Belgium Work Visa application

The European Blue Card is a combined work and residence permit that allows highly skilled workers from outside the EU to live and work in Belgium for more than three months. To be employed under the Blue Card Scheme, you must:

  • possess a permanent, or minimum of a year-long, employment contract with a Belgian company;
  • be paid a gross annual salary of at least EUR 51,882 (2017 figures);
  • hold a recognized higher education qualification.

However well-qualified you are, you won’t be able to get a Blue Card if you’re a long-term resident, seasonal worker, researcher or have been posted to Belgium from overseas. Your employer must get a temporary employment permit for you and at the same time, you can apply for the long-term visa for the Blue Card either at the Belgian embassy in your home country or, if you are already in Belgium, for the Blue Card via the foreign nationals department of the municipality in which you’re living. Find your local commune in Belgium to ask where you need to apply.

Once the temporary work permit has been issued, you have 90 days to apply for the Blue Card. Blue Cards are issued for 13 months initially, after which they, and the employer’s employment contract, can be renewed, as long as the same conditions are fulfilled. After the second renewal, the card is valid for three years. After five years you may apply for long-term resident status, which gives you an electronic card as a ‘Long-term-foreign resident card – EC – former European Blue Card Holder’. Once you have a Blue Card, your family members (spouse, registered partner, dependent children) can obtain a type B permit if the employer has an employment permit for them.

For more information and advice on Belgian immigration law and visa applications please contact us on

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