Residence permit

Belgium

Country Report: Residence permit Last updated: 30/11/20

Author

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The duration of the right to residence for recognised refugees is 5 years.[1] The residence right for recognised refugees is limited to 5 years, which then becomes unlimited unless the CGRS takes a cessation or revocation decision on the status according to Article 55/3 or 55/3/1 of the Aliens Act.  Upon recognition, refugees receive an electronic “A card” valid for 5 years from the moment of the asylum application.[2] After these 5 years they can receive an electronic B card which is valid indefinitely.

Beneficiaries of subsidiary protection receive a residence right for one year. Unless the Immigration Office is convinced that the situation motivating the status has changed (upon which the CGRS is asked for an examination), the residence right will be renewed after the first year and then after two years again. Five years after the asylum application, the subsidiary protection status holder receives an unlimited right to residence, unless the CGRS would apply cessation or revocation of the status according to Article 55/5 or 55/5/1 of the Aliens Act.[3] Similarly to refugees, persons granted subsidiary protection receive an electronic “A card” valid for one year, renewable twice for a period of two years. Upon receiving the right to residence for unlimited time the beneficiary receives an electronic B card.[4]

Once a person is recognised as a refugee, he or she can get registered in the Aliens Register at the commune and receives a residence permit (A card). This does not happen automatically, however; the refugee has to present the certificate of the CGRS stating he or she has been recognised.

If subsidiary protection status is granted, however, the Immigration Office itself gives instructions to the commune to register the person in the Aliens Register and issues the residence permit, which is an electronic A card in this situation.

Renewal of the residence card has to be demanded at the commune between the 45th and 30th day before its expiration date. When it is applied for in time, but the Immigration Office cannot timely prolong the card, a paper document temporarily covering the right to residence is issued by the commune. This document is named an “Annex 15”.[5]

 


[1]           Article 49 Aliens Act.

[2]           Article 76 Aliens Decree.

[3]           Article 49/2(2)(3) Aliens Act.

[4]           Article 77 Aliens Decree.

[5]           Article 33 Aliens Decree.

 

Table of contents

  • Statistics
  • Overview of the legal framework
  • Overview of the main changes since the previous report update
  • Asylum Procedure
  • Reception Conditions
  • Detention of Asylum Seekers
  • Content of International Protection
  • ANNEX I – Transposition of the CEAS in national legislation