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Work permit – Employment under an international agreement

Under certain conditions, a foreign national can work in Belgium in the framework of an international agreement. If this is for a maximum of 90 days, the employer does not need to apply for a work permit. 
 
If it is with a Schengen visa for 90/180 days, or for longer than 90 days, the future employer needs to apply for a work permit for the employee. 
 

Work permits for more than 90 days

Foreign nationals who come to work in Flanders must first receive permission to work. This obligation applies to everyone apart from a few well-defined categories of foreign workers.

A foreign national who does not belong to one of these well-defined categories can come to work in Flanders if they are employed here in the framework of an international agreement that has been approved by a federal, regional or municipal council. An example of such an agreement is an international exchange programme like Erasmus(opens in new window). It has been approved on the Flemish, Belgian and European levels. In this way, a foreign person may follow a traineeship or perform a work placement in Belgium as a student.

The traineeship or employment lasts for a maximum of 3 months

For an appointment for the execution of international agreements, from a legal perspective, there is no work permit needed if the employment or traineeship lasts for a maximum of 3 consecutive months.

The traineeship or appointment has a duration of 90/180 days with a Schengen visa, or longer than 3 months.

90/180 days with a Schengen visa: the employer is to apply for a work permit and employment permit. The foreign employee will be permitted to work for a maximum of 90 days in the Flemish region during the period of validity of their Schengen visa (valid for 180 days).

If the traineeship or employment lasts longer than three months, the employer is required to apply for a so-called single permit with a fixed term.

This way, the trainee can work in Flanders.

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