Immigration update: Belgium single permit launches

A new combined procedure, the single permit, was introduced for non-European workers who visit Belgium for more than 90 days.

Flags in Belgium
A new combined procedure, the single permit, was introduced for non-European workers who visit Belgium for more than 90 days.This allows foreign workers to apply for one permit – combining the work and residence permit, and speeding up the immigration process.

The process

1. Create an application file An employer who wants to bring in or send a foreign worker to Belgium must include the following documents in a single file (work and stays).The file can only be processed if it is complete.
Documents for admission to workDocuments for admission to stay
  • Contract
  • Diploma
  • CV
  • Criminal record
  • Medical certificate
  • Proof of payment of the administrative contribution
2. Submit the application formThe complete file must be submitted to the Economic Migration Service of the Region and must be through a Belgian resident, either;
  • The Belgian employer or their authorized representative 
  • Belgian authorized representative of the foreign employer
The Region checks whether the file is complete and, if necessary, decides whether admission to employment can be granted.The Region must also forward the file to the Immigration Service that decides whether residence can be granted.In the case of an incomplete file, the Region will inform the applicant, who will then have 15 days to complete it. The Region will also inform the applicant if the green light is given for employment.3. Approval If the application has been approved, the foreign office informs the employer, the consulate (if the employee is still abroad) or the municipality (if the employee is already resident in Belgium). The consulate issues the visa to the employee who makes the request.4. Arrival in Belgium Once in Belgium, the employee reports to the municipality. After verification of residence, the employee is also recorded in the register of foreigners and receives a single residence permit from the municipality. It is the municipality that issues the single permit.

Key considerations

This new procedure has major advantages for employers. As they only have to submit one application the process is simplified. Although the preparation time will be slightly longer, the combined process shouldn’t take more than four months to receive a decision from the authorities. Unfortunately for visa-exempt nationals, the new procedure will not be beneficial. They can no longer start work immediately. Instead, they must complete the full process and obtain a single permit.This summary was prepared using information obtained from Agoria. Please note that the source link is only available in French.Disclaimer: The above information is provided for general information purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. If you have any further inquiries regarding the applicability of this information, please contact Crown World Mobility’s Michele Giordani, Regional Immigration Manager, EMEA.Crown World Mobility tracks policy in changes in over 120 countries, so you don’t have to! Find out more. 

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