New work permit exemptions for business meetings

6th April 2011, Comments 0 comments

This new Royal Decree mainly clarifies the categories of foreign nationals who are eligible for a work permit type C and recognizes the status of partnership as equivalent to marriage. In addition, and most important, the Royal Decree changes the work permit exemption for business meetings and scientific congresses.

We are pleased to inform you that on 29.03.2011 a Royal Decree was published in the Belgian Official Journal, changing and clarifying the content of the Royal Decree of 9.06.1999 on the employment of foreign nationals in Belgium.
The new Royal Decree mainly clarifies the categories of foreign nationals who are eligible for a work permit type C and recognizes the status of partnership as equivalent to marriage. In addition, and most important, the Royal Decree changes the work permit exemption for business meetings and scientific congresses.

Whereas in the past, a foreign national was only exempt from a work permit when coming over for business meetings for no more than 5 days per calendar months, the exemption is now extended and applies to foreign nationals coming over for no more than 60 activity days per year, with a limit of 20 consecutive days per meeting. This exemption is in line with the exemption for business meetings created in the legislation on Limosa.

Be aware though that the work permit exemption is strictly limited to foreign nationals coming over to Belgium for business meetings. A foreign national, coming over to Belgium and being engaged in productive activities on Belgian territory still needs a work permit as of day 1 of his activities in Belgium.

Finally, in application of this new Royal Decree, foreign nationals coming over to attend scientific congresses are no longer required to be in possession of a work permit. For this exemption, there is no limitation in time foreseen.

For more info, please contact Matthias Lommers, Advocaat-Avocat, Tel: +32 2 800 70 69, Email: mlommers@laga.be

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