Visas, residence permits, family reunion

Getting a visa or a document allowing residence in Luxembourg depends on the country of origin of the person applying to immigrate to Luxembourg, but also on the duration of the stay.

  • Nationals of countries subject to the visa requirement or not subject to it,
  • Duration of stay in Luxembourg of less than 90 days or more than 90 days.

We will also study here certain specific cases such as frontier workers, asylum seekers or applicants for international protection.

Conditions of stay and documents to be presented

The right of residence in Luxembourg, except in special cases, is subject to the ability to provide for oneself and one’s family, and applicants for the right of residence must not represent a financial burden for the social assistance system. In particular, the amount and duration of social benefits and the length of stay will be considered.

All candidates for expatriation to Luxembourg must have a valid official identity document (national identity card or passport) at the time of their trip.

Family members wishing to join the resident in Luxembourg must provide proof of their status. See the paragraph on family reunification below.

Principle of free movement for EU nationals

Luxembourg is part of the European Union and the Schengen area.

As such, all nationals of the European Union (EU) or an assimilated country benefit from free circulation within the EU. This entitles them to live and work in any EU country, including Luxembourg.

  • This applies to nationals of 27 EU countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden.
  • All nationals of the States that have acceded to the Agreement on the European Economic Area (Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) are also concerned.
  • Nationals of the Swiss Confederation are assimilated to EU citizens.

Family members of a European Union citizen who are themselves EU citizens are also allowed to stay in Luxembourg. See “Family reunification” below.

Staying in Luxembourg for less than 3 months for a citizen of the Union

EU nationals do not have to take any steps to stay in Luxembourg for less than three months. They must nevertheless comply with the provisions of the various municipal regulations on keeping population registers.

They must nevertheless be in possession of a valid national identity card or passport for the duration of their stay.

Staying in Luxembourg for more than 3 months as a citizen of the Union

European Union citizens and persons of equivalent status may stay in Luxembourg for more than three months provided that they can prove that they are employed or self-employed in Luxembourg.
In the absence of employment, they must prove that they have sufficient financial means to ensure their subsistence or that they are a member of the family of a citizen of the Union and are themselves a citizen of the EU. Students enrolled in a Luxembourg school may also stay in Luxembourg.

European Union citizens and persons of equivalent status must make a declaration of arrival to the local authority of the place where they are residing within 8 days of their arrival. A “registration certificate” is issued immediately.

EU nationals wishing to reside in Luxembourg for more than 3 months must be in possession of a valid national identity card or passport.

Family members are allowed to join the main “migrant”, if the latter is a citizen of the European Union. See below the paragraph on family reunification.

The list of documents to be provided depends on the status of the EU citizen and is available on www.guichet.public.lu or on website Ministry of Foreign & European Affairs.

Residence permit and medical examination for third country nationals

Non-EU nationals who wish to travel to Luxembourg, either in transit or for a regular stay, must have a valid travel document (passport) and a visa before travelling. See here the list of the countries concerned by a visa or not. See here for the list of visa and non-visa countries.

The travel document must be valid, in particular : 

  • be issued less than 10 years ago
  • be valid for at least 3 months longer than the intended duration of stay in Luxembourg
  • contain at least two blank pages.

The visa must be issued prior to travel by a Luxembourg consulate or a representative diplomatic mission of Luxembourg. Obtaining a visa guarantees freedom of movement in Luxembourg, but also in all the countries of the Schengen area (Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland).

Visa and residence permit according to the status of the national

The residence permit granted in Luxembourg depends on the status of the non-EU national (employee, self-employed, student, researcher, professional sportsman), au pair, etc.).

Family reunification is also subject to special treatment.

The list of documents to be presented, depending on the activity, can be consulted on www.guichet.public.lu or on the website of the Ministry of Foreign & European Affairs.

Medical examination of foreigners in order to obtain a residence permit

The immigration medical service organises the medical examination of foreigners (from outside the EU) who apply for a residence permit in Luxembourg for more than three months. These persons must undergo a compulsory medical examination and a tuberculosis screening.

This procedure concerns all migrants who are not citizens of the European Union or an assimilated country (Norway, Switzerland, Iceland, Lichtenstein). This examination can be carried out by any general practitioner, specialist in internal medicine or specialist in paediatrics.

Tuberculosis screening must be carried out exclusively by the Ligue médico-sociale (LMS).

The medical costs are borne by the applicant.

Acquisition of Luxembourg nationality after 5 years of continuous residence

After a regular uninterrupted stay of 5 years in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, residents can apply for the right of permanent residence in Luxembourg or for Luxembourg nationality. They also acquire the right to vote in certain elections.

Specific cases

Non-EU frontier worker

A cross-border worker from a non-EU country or an assimilated country must first obtain a work permit before coming to work in Luxembourg without residing there.

However, if he or she is the spouse, official partner or child of a citizen of the Union or an assimilated country (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland), already working in Luxembourg, he or she may apply in advance for an exemption from the requirement to obtain a work permit from the Immigration Department of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs.

Refugees and applicants for international protection

Luxembourg recognises the right to asylum, which confers an authorisation to stay under international protection for 5 years. 

Stateless people

Stateless status may also be granted to applicants who meet the necessary conditions. 

More information on these specific cases on guichet.lu 

 

How to move a family member to Luxembourg

In Luxembourg, family reunification is defined differently depending on the status of the person authorised to reside on Luxembourg territory, or the main ‘migrant’, to whom the various members of the family will be attached.
Different cases arise if the main “migrant” is a citizen of a European country or a national of a third country.

Family life is a right found in Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights. Luxembourg applies the European policy like many other European countries.

Nevertheless, proof of family membership or financial support justifying a rapprochement will have to be provided by the applicant, thanks to an official document from the country of origin.

Family reunification for European Union citizens

The family members are authorised to join the main “migrant”, if this one is a citizen of the European Union.Are considered as family members:

  • The spouse or the registered partner

The partner in a de facto union (long-lasting and duly attested relationship, cohabitation of at least 1 year before the demand and/or a common child whose they have parental authority)

  • The children of the EU citizen or of his/her spouse/partner, younger than 21 or who are supported

The direct ascendants of the EU citizen or of his/her spouse/partner to support

  • Any other family member who was supported or was a part of the household in the country of origin, and/or of which the citizen necessarily has to take care owing to his/her health.

Family reunion for national citizens from a non-EU country

Here are the family members authorised to join the main “migrant”, if the main “migrant” is a national from a third country:

  • The registered spouse or partner aged more than 18
  • The main “migrant”‘s or his/her spouse/partner’s children aged under 18 or supported

The Minister can also allow (but it is not a right as for the first two categories):

  • Ascendants (mother and father) of the migrant or his/her spouse or partner, when they are supported and deprived from the necessary family support in their country of origin
  • The migrant’s single major children or his/her spouse or partner’s ones, when they objectively cannot meet their own needs owing to their state of health.

If the main “migrant” is a national from a third country that is not in the European Union, the period of wait before obtaining the family reunification depends on his/her personal status.
For a “migrant” holder of a “salaried” residence permit, the period of wait will be of one year, while for the highly-qualified, that is, the holder of a “Carte Bleue Européenne” residence permit, the family entry and settlement is directly authorised.

Please note: official documents must be presented in one of the languages used in Luxembourg: Luxembourgish, French or German. If not, the applicant must use an official translator.