Staying in Luxembourg for more than 3 months as a third-country national and family member of an EU citizen or Luxembourg national

Dernière mise à jour de cette page le 01-04-2016

Third-country nationals who are family members of an EU citizen or Luxembourg national may stay in Luxembourg provided that they are effectively considered to be a family member and after having performed certain formalities.

Forms / Online services

Effectuez votre démarche :

Who is concerned

"EU citizens" are nationals of an EU Member State, namely: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom.

Nationals of the other Contracting Parties to the European Economic Area Agreement (Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein) and the Swiss Confederation are treated as EU citizens.

The following are considered to be family members:

  • the spouse;
  • the registered partner;
  • the direct descendants (sons or daughters) of the EU citizen or their spouse/partner if the child is under 21 or is under their care;
  • the direct ascendants (father or mother) if they are under the care of the EU citizen or their spouse/partner;
  • any other family member if:
    • in their country of origin, they were under the care or were a member of the household of the EU citizen with the right to reside; or
    • the EU citizen is obliged to personally take care of the family member in question due to serious health problems;
  • the non-registered partner (free union) with whom the EU citizen has a duly demonstrated long-term relationship. These partners cannot be linked to another person through marriage, declared partnership or long-term relationship. The long-term nature of the relationship is assessed according to how strong, long-lasting and stable the links between the partners are, including, in concrete terms:
    • uninterrupted legal cohabitation lasting at least a year before the request;
    • a common child for whom they share parental responsibility.

Any person claiming to be a dependent must provide proof of financial support, i.e. proof of poverty in the country of origin, or proof of regular payments (bank transfers, agency transfers, etc. stating the name of the sender and the beneficiary) made to them by the person they wish to join in Luxembourg. These transfers must have been made regularly over a period of at least 6 months before the family reunification request was submitted. The amounts to be taken into account must have been sufficient to cover the needs of the applicant in the country of origin.

Family members of Luxembourg nationals are treated as family members of EU citizens.

Specific case of a third-country national wishing to come to Luxembourg to get married:

There is no specific provision for entering the country for a marriage. Third-country nationals wishing to marry an EU citizen, including a Luxembourg national, in Luxembourg must follow the normal procedure for a short stay, request a short-stay visa if applicable and meet the conditions of entry and for a short stay.

Prerequisites

The citizen of the EU or of a country treated as such (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland) being joined must meet the conditions to legally stay in Luxembourg for less than 3 months or more than 3 months.

The right to reside of an EU citizen and members of their family is conditional on them not becoming unreasonably dependent on the social welfare system. This dependency is currently assessed by considering criteria including the amount and duration of the non-contributory benefits paid, as well as the period of residency.

Preliminary steps

Before entering the country, a third-country national wishing to stay in Luxembourg must hold a valid passport.

If a third-country national does not require a visa, they may enter Luxembourg.

If they require a visa, they must apply for a visa to enter Luxembourg. The visa must be obtained before entering Luxembourg. The documentation required to obtain a visa varies according to the type of family member.

The application can be:

The application must indicate the applicant's identity (last name and first name[s]) as well as their exact address in their country of residence. Several documents must be attached, depending on the situation.

Sponsor's spouse or registered partner:
  • a certified copy of the pages with content of the spouse's/registered partner's valid passport; The passport must be valid for at least another 6 months;
  • the birth certificate of the spouse/partner;
  • a certificate attesting to the marriage or registered partnership (marriage certificate, registered partnership certificate, family record book, etc.);
  • a copy of the registration certificate of the EU citizen accompanied or joined;
Descendants (children) of the sponsor or sponsor's spouse/partner:
  • a certified copy of the pages with content of the child's valid passport; The passport must be valid for at least another 6 months;
  • proof of the family relationship with the EU citizen they are accompanying or joining (e.g. birth certificate or family record book);
  • in the event of the child being aged over 21: proof that he or she is under the care of the person they are accompanying or joining (e.g. proof of financial support, proof of education of the descendant);
  • if the parents are divorced (only applicable to children aged under 18):
    • a copy of the ruling granting custody of the child aged under 18 to the parents residing in Luxembourg; and
    • if the other parent has visiting or accommodation rights: the notarised authorisation of the parent residing abroad attesting to their agreement to the child moving to Luxembourg (accompanied by an identity document for the parent residing abroad);
  • in the case of shared custody (only applicable to children aged under 18): the notarised authorisation of the parent who does not reside in Luxembourg attesting to their agreement to the child moving to Luxembourg (accompanied by an identity document for the parent residing abroad);
  • a copy of the registration certificate of the EU citizen accompanied or joined;
Ascendant (parent) of the sponsor or sponsor's spouse/partner:
  • a certified copy of the pages with content of the ascendant's valid passport; The passport must be valid for at least another 6 months;
  • the parent's birth certificate;
  • proof of the family relationship with the EU citizen they are accompanying or joining (e.g. sponsor's or their spouse/partner's birth certificate or family record book);
  • a copy of the ascendant's marital status certificate;
  • proof that the ascendant is under the care of the person they are accompanying or joining (e.g. proof of financial support);
  • a copy of the registration certificate of the EU citizen accompanied or joined.
Non-registered partner (free union) with whom the EU citizen has a duly demonstrated long-term relationship
  • a certified copy of the pages with content of the non-registered partner's valid passport; The passport must be valid for at least another 6 months;
  • a birth certificate;
  • a copy of the identity documents of the EU national or the Luxembourg citizen they are joining;
  • a copy of the registration certificate of the EU citizen accompanied or joined;
  • proof that neither of the non-registered partners is related to another person by marriage, registered partnership or long-term relationship (civil status extract, certificate of celibacy, household composition certificate and/or residence certificate issued by the last country of residence);
  • proof of the long-term nature of the relationship:
    • in the case of a common child: proof that the partners share parental responsibility for the child (the child's birth certificate, proof that the partner provides financial support for the child, residence certificate and/or household composition certificate issued by the last country of residence); or
    • in the case of cohabitation: proof that the partners have been in uninterrupted lawful cohabitation for at least a year prior to the application (residence certificate and/or household composition certificate issued in the country in which they were in cohabitation) as well as proof that the partners were residing lawfully in their country of residence (residence permit issued by the country of residence concerned); or
    • alternatively: any proof demonstrating the long-term nature of the relationship.

If the documents are not written in German, French or English, an official translation by a sworn translator must be attached.

A type "D" visa will be issued with a maximum validity period of 3 months. The visa is provided free of charge. When the visa is granted, it is affixed in the passport in the form of a stamp or seal. A type D visa is valid for a period of 90 days to one year maximum.

This visa gives the right of entry into Luxembourg and the right to stay there during its period of validity as well as freedom of movement within the Schengen area countries during the same period.

Within 3 months of arriving in Luxembourg, the family member must come in person to the offices of the authority of their commune to submit an application to obtain a "residence permit for a family member of an EU citizen".

If third-country nationals hold a valid family member residence permit issued by the Luxembourg authorities or another EU Member State, they do not require a visa to enter Luxembourg.

How to proceed

Before entering the country

For a stay of more than 3 months, third-country nationals considered to be family members are only obliged to hold a valid passport and, where applicable, to hold an entry visa before arriving in Luxembourg.

If the family member holds a valid family member residence permit issued by the Luxembourg authorities or another EU Member State, they do not require a visa to enter Luxembourg.

The family member may also leave Luxembourg to enter another EU Member State without needing to obtain an exit visa or equivalent.

In the event that a third-country national and family member of an EU citizen does not hold a valid travel document and, where applicable, a visa when they enter Luxembourg, all reasonable means will be accorded to allow them to obtain the documents required in a reasonable time frame.

EU citizens and members of their family keep their right to reside as long as they do not become unreasonably dependent on the social welfare system.

After entering the country: applying for a residence permit

Within 3 months of arriving in the Grand-Duchy, third-country national family members must register with the offices of the authority of their commune of residence and apply for a residence permit for a family member, on which they must give their last name, first name(s) and exact address.

The following documents must be sent with the residence permit application:

  • a certified copy of the pages with content of their valid passport;
  • a photograph compliant with OACI/ICAO standards (recent photograph, in colour, good quality, full face, format 45 / 35 mm).

Important: the following documents are not required for persons holding a type D visa issued before entering the country for family reunification purposes. However, they are required for persons entering Luxembourg without a visa or with a document other than the type D visa (residence permit issued by another Member State or tourist visa):

  • a copy of the registration certificate of the EU citizen they are joining, or a residence certificate if they are joining a Luxembourg citizen;
  • if they are the spouse or registered partner: a certificate of marriage or registered partnership, or a family record book extract;
  • if they are a descendant (son or daughter): proof of the family relationship with the EU citizen (child's birth certificate, family record book, etc.). If the child is aged under 21, proof that he or she is under the care of the person they are accompanying or joining (e.g. proof of financial support, proof of education of the descendant, etc.) must also be provided;
  • if they are an ascendant (father or mother): proof of the family relationship with the EU citizen (birth certificate, family record book, etc.) and proof that he or she is under the care of the person they are accompanying or joining (e.g. proof of financial support, proof of education of the descendant, etc.);
  • if they are a non-registered partner (free union): proof of the existence of a long-term relationship with the EU citizen:
    • proof that neither of the non-registered partners is related to another person by marriage, registered partnership or long-term relationship (civil status extract, certificate of celibacy, household composition certificate and/or residence certificate issued by the last country of residence);
    • proof of the long-term nature of the relationship:
      • in the case of a common child: proof that the partners share parental responsibility for the child (the child's birth certificate, proof that the partner provides financial support for the child, residence certificate and/or household composition certificate issued by the last country of residence); or
      • in the case of cohabitation: proof that the partners have been in uninterrupted lawful cohabitation for at least a year prior to the application (residence certificate and/or household composition certificate issued in the country in which they were in cohabitation) as well as proof that the partners were residing lawfully in their country of residence (residence permit issued by the country of residence concerned); or
      • alternatively: any proof demonstrating the long-term nature of the relationship.

The documents enclosed must be originals or certified true copies. Should the authenticity of a document be in doubt, the Minister of Immigration can request that the document be authenticated by the appropriate local authority and certified by the embassy (or notarised with a Hague apostille).

If the documents are not drawn up in German, French or English, an official translation by a sworn translator must be attached.

Only complete applications will be processed. Incomplete applications will be returned to the applicant.

The communal authority sends the application for a residence permit to the Immigration Directorate of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs. The processing time by the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs is generally a maximum of 6 months.

A copy of the application for a residence permit is provided to the applicant in the form of a receipt. It has the same legal status as a residence permit for a maximum period of 6 months. This receipt cannot however be used as a travel document outside Luxembourg.

If the residence permit is granted, it will be sent to the communal authority for collection by the holder.

Validity period of the residence permit

The validity period of the residence permit runs from the residence permit application date.

It is valid for 5 years or for the envisaged period of stay of the EU citizen, if this is less than 5 years.

The validity of the residence permit is not affected:

  • by temporary absences that do not exceed 6 months per year in total; or
  • by absences of more than 6 months for military service obligations; or
  • by uninterrupted absences of a maximum of 12 consecutive months for significant reasons, such as pregnancy, childbirth, studies or professional training or work-related secondment.

Residence permit renewal

Within the 2 months prior to the expiry date of the residence permit, third-country nationals must apply for its renewal by completing the specific form and sending it to the Immigration Directorate of together with the following items:

  • a certified copy of the pages with content of their valid passport;
  • a photograph compliant with OACI/ICAO standards (recent photograph, in colour, good quality, full face, format 45 / 35 mm).

After having resided in the country for an uninterrupted period of 5 years with an EU citizen, a third-country national who is a family member of an EU citizen has the right to permanent residence and may be granted a permanent residence permit.

Carrying out a professional activity

Third-country nationals who are family members of an EU citizen have the right to carry out a paid or unpaid professional activity without requesting prior authorisation.

Death of the EU national, annulment of the marriage or break-up of the partnership

The death of the EU citizen does not result in his/her family member losing their right of residence if they had been living in Luxembourg for at least a year prior to the death of the EU citizen.

The EU citizen's departure from the country does not result in his/her children and the parent who has custody (spouse, registered or non-registered partner, father or mother) losing their right of residence if they have been lawfully living in the country, even for less than a year, and the children are enrolled in an educational establishment for the duration of their studies.

The divorce, annulment of the marriage or break-up of the partnership (whether or not registered) does not result in the family members losing their right of residence if one of the following conditions is met:

  • the marriage or partnership lasted at least 3 years before the start of legal divorce/annulment proceedings or the break-up, at least one year of which was spent in Luxembourg;
  • custody of the children of the EU citizen (or national of a country treated as such) was granted to the third-country national spouse or partner, by way of an agreement between the spouses or partners or by court order;
  • it is necessitated by particularly difficult circumstances, particularly in the event of break-up due to acts of domestic violence;
  • the spouse or partner benefits, by way of an agreement between the spouses or partners or by court order, from the right to visit his/her child who is a minor, on condition that the judge has ruled that the visits should take place in the country, and for as long as they are deemed necessary.

Loss, theft or damage to the residence permit

In case of loss, theft or damage to the residence permit, a specific procedure must be followed.

Who to contact

26, route d'Arlon
L-1140 - Luxembourg
Adresse Postale B.P. 752 L-2017
Luxembourg
Tél. : (+352) 247-84040 (from 14.00 to 16.00)
Fax : (+352) 22 16 08
E-mail immigration.public@mae.etat.lu

Heures d'ouverture
Monday to Friday from 08.30 - 12.00