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Immigration & Work Permits

Work Permits

Members of the EU, EEA and Swiss nationals do not need a work permit in Belgium. There are also exceptions made for executives of multinational companies with an office in Belgium, but all other workers will need one of the following types of work permits. The most common is the Work Permit Type B.

Once the work permit is issued, a visa may be applied for by the worker at an embassy in their home country. In Belgium, the work permit must be sponsored by a registered company for a specific position.   If you have yet to complete the incorporation process you can use Shield GEO to sponsor the employee for the necessary permits.

Professional Card: Individuals who are self-employed or wish to start a business in Belgium will need to apply for a Professional Card, which will function as their work permit. The card can be applied for at the same time as their visa from an embassy in their home country. The fee for the Professional Card is 140 Euros.

Your Options

Use your own company

To obtain a Type B Work Permit the employer must first obtain an employment authorisation and then apply for the Work Permit B.

It takes around 8 to 10 weeks to secure a work permit assuming the company is appropriately registered.

Documentation required (Employer):

  • Signed and dated application form “Authorisation for the employment of a foreign employee”
  • Depending on the employees salary and qualifications the employer may be required to show proof that a suitable employee was not available within the Belgian or EU employment market with the same professional skills. Generally this is done by showing the position was advertised.
  • Photocopy of the identity card of the employer
  • Signed and dated photocopy of the employment contract. it must contain specific provisions such as covering the costs of repatriation and healthcare.
  • Confirmation of registration as a sponsor with the Ministry of Labor.

Documentation required (Employee):

  • A valid passport/travel ID document with a scanned copy of all pages;
  • A work permit, proof of registration at an educational institution, marriage/civil partnership or birth certificates (if applicable);
  • Proof that you can support yourself during your stay;
  • Proof of accommodation;
  • A medical certificate to prove that you don’t have any disease which could endanger public health;
  • A certificate to show you don’t have a criminal record.

The visa fee is 180 Euros plus a 24 Euro processing fee.

The Belgian employer must first register with the Ministry of Labor as a sponsor of foreign workers.

Work Permit type B processing steps:

1. Applications should be submitted at least 15 working days prior to departure, and must be presented at the Belgian embassy in the home country in person.

2. An application is made with the Belgian Immigration authorities. The application is made by a Belgian company registered as a sponsor with the Ministry of Labor. The original “authorisation to employ” will be sent to the employer.

3. An Entry “D” Visa Application is lodged with the Belgian Consulate in the employee’s country of residence. The original work permit will be sent to the local municipality where the employer is established.

4. The employee travels to Belgium. Note the employee cannot be in Belgium when the application is lodged.

5. After arrival the employee applies for their Registration of Arrival and lodges their residential address

6. The employee submits ID Card application forms

7. The employee collects their ID Card and submits their biometric data.

Use the Shield GEO Employer of Record Solution

It takes around 4 to 6 weeks to secure a work permit, and costs $1000 USD through Shield GEO.

Documentation required (Employee):

  • A valid passport/travel ID document with a scanned copy of all pages;
  • A work permit, proof of registration at an educational institution, marriage/civil partnership or birth certificates (if applicable);
  • Proof that you can support yourself during your stay;
  • Proof of accommodation;
  • A medical certificate to prove that you don’t have any disease which could endanger public health;
  • A certificate to show you don’t have a criminal record.

The visa fee is 180 Euros plus a 24 Euro processing fee.

1. Applications should be submitted at least 15 working days prior to departure, and must be presented at the Belgian embassy in the home country in person.

2. Shield GEO makes the Work Permit application with the Belgian Immigration authorities.

3. An Entry “D” Visa Application is lodged with the Belgian Consulate in the employee’s country of residence

4. The employee travels to Belgium

5. After arrival the employee applies for their Registration of Arrival and lodges their residential address

6. The employee submits ID Card application forms

7. The employee collects their ID Card and submits their biometric data.

Types of visas in Belgium

Category Description of Visa
Work Permit Type A This work permit is valid indefinitely and requires a previous position on a Type B permit for 4 out of 10 years. The worker must present evidence of the Type B visa when applying.
Work Permit Type B A Type B permit must be applied for by the employer on behalf of the employee for a specific position, and is valid for 12 months. It is renewable, but will only be available for jobs that cannot otherwise be filled by a Belgian or EU national. This is the most common visa for the purposes of corporate immigration. It is typically limited to 8 year duration unless the employee is a high earner.
Work Permit Type C This work permit allows temporary visitors such as students to work in Belgium for up to 12 months.
A Airport Transit Visa
C Short Stay Schengen Visa (work not allowed)
D Long Term Visa
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