Belgian Single Work Permit

Belgium applies since January 3rd, 2019 the Directive 2011/98/EU.

The conditions to obtain a « Single Work Permit » are the following:

• You will be an employee in Belgium, which implies that you must theoretically report to somebody (the “employer”). Of course, for this purpose you can be hired directly by a Belgian employer, which is in fact challenging when you are non-EU citizen (except if your foreign employer agrees to set up a Belgian subsidiary). But you can also be « sent (appointed) » in Belgium by any foreign company with a simple Belgian representative office (which is simple to create). The director of this foreign company must hold a degree (bachelor). If you own your company, the signing director can not be yourself, but no problem if it is one of your relatives.

The biggest advantages are (i) that the process is rather fast (2 to 4 months); (ii) that if the file is properly set up there is almost no risk of failure (99% of success rate); (iii) that you don’t need to apply at the Embassy to lodge the request.


  • EITHER you hold a degree corresponding to Master / Bachelor (diploma after 3 years of studies granted by a recognized university in your country) AND you (or your employer) are able to fund a gross salary of 3,572.42 EUR per month (+ approximately 1,500 EUR as social contributions). Depending on personal situations, the clear salary will be between 2,200 EUR and 2,500 EUR after taxes. As a result the cost will between 2,500 and 2,800 EUR per month;
  • OR you don’t have such degree but you (or your employer) can fund a salary of 5.138 EUR per month (cost approximately 7,500 EUR, clear salary approximately 4,000 EUR per month, costs approximately 3,500 EUR per month).

The Single Work Permit gives access to residency. After 5 years of residency, you can apply for permanent residency and citizenship. It is possible that, for some reason, you or/and your employer decide to terminate the work contract in Belgium. In this case, as a resident you can apply more easily for a professional card in order to set up your own business, which avoids salary and related taxes.

The documents you need to provide us:
• copy of the identity card of the employer or his agent;
• copy of every page of the worker’s current passport;
• copy of the higher education degrees the interested party has obtained, to which will be attached a French translation by a sworn translator;
• an extract of the police records or equivalent document, certified, issued by the country of origin or the country of last residence of the worker and dated less than six months ago, declaring that the worker has not been sentenced for crimes or common law offences, to which will be attached a French translation by a sworn translator;
• commitment from the employer to have the worker and their family members join a recognised mutual insurance fund as soon as they have arrived in Belgium (see the residency law of 15/12/1980);
• certificate of registration or trade license of the employer.

The documents that we will send you for signature:
• application forms;
• medical certificate (to be filled by a doctor in your country);
• special work contract for foreigners.

The process:
1. We set up the file (including the Belgian company or the representative office) on basis of the above documents;
2. We submit it to authorities (competent Region);
3. They share it with Home Office;
4. A decision is made within approximately 4 months (out of covid context which can slow down the process – we do not guarantee any timeframe at this time).

Important remarks:
• As lawyers we can be the “social representative”, which mandatory unless you already know a person in Belgium who would accept to act as such.
• As resident you will need an accomodation in Belgium, in order to register at city hall (for this step we can assist upon your request). You can find an accomodation for 1 person as from 400 EUR per month. The legal address of your professional activity can be at home if your owner agrees, if not you can for instance set your legal address in a virtual office (as from 150 EUR per month).