Staying and/or working in Luxembourg as a family member of an EU citizen

This page was last modified on 07-08-2017

Third-country nationals (i.e. nationals of countries which are neither Member States of the European Union (EU) nor countries treated as such) who wish to accompany a family member who is an EU citizen (or a national of a country treated as such) to Luxembourg or join him/her there benefit from simplified procedures in relation to those existing for other third-country nationals.

The formalities to be complied with depend on whether or not the stay exceeds 90 days.

For a stay of less than 90 days (tourism, family visit, business trip, etc.) family members of an EU citizen, regardless of their own nationality, do not have to comply with any formalities. They simply have to have a valid travel document and a visa if necessary.

For a stay of more than 90 days, third-country national family members of an EU citizen must:

  • be in possession of a valid passport;
  • whatever their nationality, make a declaration of arrival in their new commune of residence;
  • apply for a residence permit for a family member of an EU citizen.

Family members of EU citizens have access to the job market without needing any particular authorisation.

Family members who are EU citizens or nationals of a country treated as such are subject to the same entry and residence rules as the EU citizen with whom they are staying.

Forms / Online services

Carry out your procedure:

  • By downloading a form

    • Carte de séjour - membre de famille d'un citoyen de l'Union ou pays assimilé - demande

Who is concerned

The following family members from third-countries are permitted to accompany or join an EU citizen (or a national of a country treated as such) and live with him/her in Luxembourg:

  • the spouse or registered partner of the EU citizen (or national of a country treated as such);
  • the direct descendants (children) of the EU citizen, or those of his/her spouse/partner, who are under 21 years of age or are dependent on the EU citizen;
  • the direct ascendants (parents) of the EU citizen, or those of his/her spouse/partner, who are dependent on the EU citizen or on his/her spouse/partner.

Dependent persons: any person claiming to be dependent must provide proof of financial support.
E.g. proof of dependency in the country of origin, proof of regular money transfers, etc.

In addition, in the event of ministerial approval, any person may join an EU citizen if one of the following conditions is met:

  • the applicant is the EU citizen's partner and their lasting relationship has been duly acknowledged although it is not an officially registered partnership.
    The lasting nature of the relationship is acknowledged if the couple has legally lived together for an uninterrupted period of at least one year prior to the application, or if they have a child together;
  • if in the country of origin, the applicant has been a member of the EU citizen's household or has been dependent on him;
  • if the EU citizen is obliged to personally take care of the family member in question due to serious health problems.

If the EU citizen (or national of a country treated as such) is a student, the family members that can join him/her are limited to:

  • the spouse/registered partner;
  • any children under his/her care.

Applications for children under the age of 10 may be made in their absence by their legal representative.

Stay with a view to marriage

There are no specific procedures for nationals of third-countries who wish to join a person residing in Luxembourg in order to marry him/her.

They must follow the normal procedure for a stay of less than 90 days in order to enter Luxembourg.

Following the marriage, which should take place within the official period of the stay (3 months in principle), the applicant must request a residence permitfor family members of an EU citizen.

Preliminary steps

Third-country nationals must, when planning their journey:

The following countries are treated as European Union Member States:

  • Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway as signatories of the European Economic Area Agreement (EEA);
  • the Swiss Confederation.

How to proceed

Stay of less than 90 days

Family members of nationals of an EU country (or of a country treated as such), who are not EU nationals themselves and who wish to come to Luxembourg for a stay of less than 90 days (tourism, family visit, business trip, etc.) must, where applicable, obtain a visa prior to their trip. Subsequently, no further administrative procedures are required once they are in Luxembourg.

Before entering the country: passport and visa

Third-country nationals subject to a visa obligation must submit, before their journey and from their country of origin, a visa application to the Luxembourg diplomatic or consular representation in their country of origin or to the Minister of Foreign Affairs in Luxembourg.

The visa, valid for a maximum period of 3 months, is affixed in the passport in the form of a seal.

If a third-country national has a valid residence permit issued by another EU Member State, the visa is not required.

Entering the country: no procedures required

Upon entering Luxembourg, no administrative procedures are required for family members of EU citizens (or nationals of countries treated as such).

They merely have to hold a valid passport which, where applicable, has the necessary visa or is accompanied by a valid residence permit issued by another EU Member State.

Stay of more than 90 days

For a stay of more than 90 days, third-country national family members of an EU citizen (or national of a country treated as such) must hold a valid passport to declare their arrival and apply for a residence permit in their new commune of residence.

N.B.: the EU citizen must lawfully reside in Luxembourg.

Before entering the country: passport and visa

Third-country nationals subject to a visa obligation must submit, before their journey and from their country of origin, a visa application to the Luxembourg diplomatic or consular representation in their country of origin or to the Minister of Foreign Affairs in Luxembourg.

The visa is provided free of charge and in a timely manner upon proof of family ties.

The visa, valid for a maximum period of 3 months, is affixed in the passport in the form of a seal.

If the applicant's passport is due to expire in less than 6 months, he/she is advised to renew it before coming to Luxembourg.

If the third-country national has a valid residence permit issued by another EU Member State, a visa is not required.

After entering the country

Declaration of arrival

Within 8 days of their arrival in Luxembourg, family members must make a declaration of arrival at the offices of the authority of the commune where they and the family member they are accompanying or joining have taken up residence, presenting in particular:

  • a valid travel document (passport and, where applicable, a visa or a residence permit issued by another EU Member State);
  • a family record book or a certificate of marriage or partnership;
  • the children's birth certificates or the family record book;
  • where applicable, the declaration of departure issued by the authority of the former commune of residence.

After having made a declaration of arrival in the commune, they can request a certificate of residence.

Applying for a residence permit

Within 90 days of their arrival in Luxembourg, third-country nationals must submit an application for a residence permit for a family member of an EU citizen (or a citizen of a country treated as such) at the offices of the communal authority.

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

  • a complete copy of the travel document (passport);
  • a certificate proving the bond of marriage, a registered partnership, family ties or the lasting relationship;
  • a copy of the registration certificate of the EU citizen they are joining, or a residence certificate if they are joining a Luxembourg citizen;
  • a photograph compliant with OACI/ICAO standards (recent photograph, in colour, good quality, full face, format 45 / 35 mm);
  • for dependent ascendants or descendants: any document proving that the head of the family is responsible for the applicant (for example: tax return, invoices relating to the child's schooling if he/she is over 21 years of age, invoices relating to keeping the person in the family home, etc.).

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 legalised by the Embassy (or alternatively notarised with an apostille of the Hague).

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

The applicant will receive a receipt attesting that the residence permit application has been made. This has the same legal status as a residence permit for a maximum period of 6 months.

If the application is approved, applicants will receive a letter inviting them to come in person to the authority of their commune with their identity card to pick up their 'residence permit for a family member of an EU citizen'.

The residence permit for a family member of an EU citizen is valid for 5 years or for the envisaged period of stay of the EU citizen on whom the family member is dependent, if this is less than 5 years.

Before the expiry date: renewal of the residence permit

Third-country nationals must apply for the renewal of their residence permit for a family member of an EU citizen at the offices of the authority of their commune of residence 2 months before the residence permit expires.

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

  • a complete copy of the travel document (passport);
  • a certificate proving the bond of marriage, a registered partnership or family tie;
  • a copy of the registration certificate of the EU citizen joined by the applicant;
  • for dependent ascendants or descendants: any document proving that the head of the family is responsible for the applicant (for example: tax return, invoices relating to the child's schooling if he/she is over 21 years of age, invoices relating to keeping the person in the family home, etc.).

After residing for 5 years in Luxembourg, third-country nationals who are family members of an EU citizen may, under certain conditions, be granted a permanent residence permit.

Cases of divorce, departure or death of the EU citizen: right to remain resident

In the event of the death of the EU citizen on whom they are dependent, the members of his/her family who are third-country nationals retain their right of residence if they had been living in Luxembourg for at least 1 year prior to the death.

In the event of the EU citizen's death or departure from the country, his/her children and the parent who has custody retain their right of residence if they are living in the country and the children are enrolled in an educational establishment for the duration of their studies.

In the event of divorce, annulment of the marriage or break-up of the partnership, the family members of the EU citizen retain their right of residence if:

  • the marriage or partnership lasted at least 3 years before the start of 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;
  • the circumstances are particularly difficult (in particular in the event of break-up by a spouse who is the victim of domestic violence);
  • the spouse or partner from a third country benefits, by way of an agreement between the spouses or partners or by a decision of the courts, 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 Luxembourg, and for as long as they are deemed necessary.

Loss, theft or damage to the residence permit

In the event of loss or theft of the residence permit, the family member of the EU citizen must submit an application for replacement and join:

  • a certified copy of the valid passport in full;
  • the declaration of theft/loss established by the police.

In the event of damage to the residence permit, the family member of the EU citizen must submit an application for replacement together with:

  • a certified copy of the valid passport in full;
  • the damaged residence permit.

Working in Luxembourg

Third country national family members of EU citizens or citizens of a country treated as such

Family members of EU citizens (or citizens of a country treated as such) may access the job market without any prior authorisation.

They also have access to education and professional guidance, training, advanced training and retraining courses.

Third country national family members of an EU citizen may register with the National Employment Agency (ADEM) as a jobseeker and access the Luxembourg job market under the same conditions as any EU citizen.

Who to contact

Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs
26, route d'Arlon
L-1140 - Luxembourg
Postal box B.P. 752 L-2017
Luxembourg
Phone: (+352) 247-84040 (from 14.00 to 16.00)
Fax: (+352) 22 16 08
Email immigration.public@mae.etat.lu

Opening hours
Monday to Friday from 08.30 - 12.00