- Purchase the complete Expat Arrivals Belgium Guide (PDF)
Though EU citizens don't need a work permit, non-European expats do. The Belgian work permit is also known as a 'single permit'.
Application forms for work permits in Belgium are obtained from the relevant employment agency in the region of the country the expat intends to work.
Work permits for non-European citizens
Non-European nationals will need a work permit to be legally employed in the country. It's usually the responsibility of the Belgian employer to receive authorisation to hire a foreign worker and apply for a work permit on their behalf.
There are two work permit options for expats in Belgium. The first is a single permit with indefinite term. This is a long-term permit for expats who have legally worked in the country for four consecutive years. The second work permit type is a single permit with a fixed term. This is the category that most expats moving to Belgium will require, and limits the holder to one employer for a period of one year.
Once their employment has been authorised by the relevant authorities, the expat employee can then apply for a Schengen visa which enables them to enter the country and stay temporarily.
Work permits for European citizens
Citizens of the European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA) don’t usually require a work permit for Belgium. European citizens working in Belgium must have a full EU or EEA passport or identity card. These nationals are free to enter Belgium for up to three months to look for work or set up a business. Those staying for more than three months are required to register at the local town hall in their city of residence in Belgium.
*Work permit regulations are subject to change at short notice and expats should contact their respective embassy or consulate for the latest details.
Are you an expat living in Belgium?
Expat Arrivals is looking for locals to contribute to this guide, and answer forum questions from others planning their move to Belgium. Please contact us if you'd like to contribute.
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