Luxembourg has a strategic geographical location in the southwest of Europe. It shares borders with Germany, France and Belgium and is close to many of the major capital cities like Berlin, Paris, Geneva and London. Its dynamic economy makes it a global hub for finance, banking and insurance, and it is today among the wealthiest nations in the world by GDP. The favorable economic environment, low taxation and lucrative investment opportunities have also made it a great destination for expats.
Since Luxembourg is a part of the Schengen Area, those who hold Schengen visas can travel freely to Schengen states for periods up to 90 days, either for business or tourism. This also applies to nationals of certain other countries.EU citizens
EU, EEA and Swiss citizens can stay in Luxembourg for up to three months if they are carrying a passport or a valid identity card. To extend their stay they need to be either employed, self-employed or enrolled at an educational institution. Those who are none of these, but can provide evidence that they have adequate resources and health coverage can also reside in Luxembourg for longer durations. Those who intend to live in the country beyond three months are required to apply for a registration certificate at the local authority office. Visas or work permits are not necessary in case of EU citizens. However citizens of new EU member states are required to have a work permit.
Non-EU nationals require a visa to stay in Luxembourg for up to three months. This short-stay visa can be obtained at the Luxembourg embassy or consulate in the home country and requires an application, passport, evidence of the purpose of visit, accommodation proof and return-ticket. Upon arrival in Luxembourg, an arrival certificate must be filled out within three days at the local authority office. If non-EU citizens intend to stay for more than three months, a temporary residence permit is required. This can be applied for at the immigration ministry before arriving in Luxembourg and it functions as a residence and work permit.
Applying for a residence visa
Residence visas or work permits take about three months to be issued. The documents required for processing include valid passport, birth certificate, marriage certificate, proof of school admission in case of students and evidence of financial means. Employees with profiles that are beneficial to the country will find it easier to obtain permits.
Registration at the local authority
Those who wish to stay in Luxembourg for more than a year need to register with the local administration and obtain a foreigner’s identity card. The documents required for this process may vary from one commune to another, but they usually include a valid passport with the provisional residence permit, work permit or proof of sufficient financial resources, passport-sized photographs and certificate of good conduct. A tax stamp is also necessary to obtain an identity card and these are available at l’Enregistrement, a part of the Ministry of Finance. EU nationals can obtain the tax stamp without any charge, while citizens of other countries are required to pay a small fee. The period for processing the application takes up to one year, after which the identity card is issued. During this time, the local police may conduct some routine questioning in order to verify the provided information.
In order to prove legal residence in Luxembourg, it is essential for all individuals over the age of 15 to have a passport or identity card at all times. In case of change of address within the country, the identity card must be updated well before the expiration date.
The law earlier required individuals to renounce their current citizenship if they wished to apply for citizenship in Luxembourg. This practice has been changed and dual citizenship is now permitted. In order to apply for citizenship, an individual must be above the age of 18 years, have resided in Luxembourg for a minimum period of ten years and be fluent in German, French and Luxembourgish, which are the three national languages. Those who have ties with the country through birth, adoption or marriage can apply for citizenship after residing in Luxembourg for a minimum period of five years.