Requesting a permanent residence permit in Luxembourg 

Did you know that the EU legislation allows every EU national who moves in another EU country to obtain permanent resident status? But what are the conditions? How does it work in the Grand Duchy and what are the advantages?

Registration certificate or permanent residence permit?

As an EU national or a national of a country treated as such, you automatically have the right of permanent residence in Luxembourg if you have officially resided in the country for a continuous period of 5 years. The permanent residence permit is different from the registration certificate. The first is not compulsory and confirms your right to live permanently in Luxembourg without any conditions. The second is compulsory if you want to stay more than 90 days in Luxembourg and confirms your right to live in the country under certain conditions.

How to get it

To get the permanent residence permit, you must be able to prove that you have been living legally in the country for an uninterrupted period of at least 5 years. A registration certificate issued 5 years ago is normally enough. The length of the stay is not deemed to be interrupted by temporary absence that do not exceed 6 months per year in total, by longer periods of absence due to complete military service and by uninterrupted period of a maximum of 12 consecutive months for significant reasons (pregnancy and childbirth, serious illness, studies or professional training, posted work in another Member State of the European Union or non-EU country, etc.). 

However, you may qualify for permanent residence in less than 5 years in any of the following situations:

  • if you retire and have carried out a professional activity in Luxembourg or another EU Member State for the last year, or have lived in the country continuously for 3 years;
  • if you stop working because you are no longer able to work and have lived in the country continuously for 2 years;
  • if you stop working because you are no longer able to work due to an accident at work or occupational illness;
  • if you start working in another EU Member State as a cross-border worker – you must return to your place of residence at least once a week – after 3 years of uninterrupted activity and residence in Luxembourg.   

Applying for a permanent residence permit is quite simple in Luxembourg. You just have to download the application form (only in French), complete it and send it with a copy of your valid identity document or passport to the Immigration directorate of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs (Ministère des Affaires étrangères et européennes). The permit will be delivered by post to your address within one month of submission of the application. 

The permanent residence permit is valid for an unlimited period but you can lose your right of permanent residence if you live outside the country for more than 2 consecutive years.

Why getting it?

The permanent residence permit can be useful when dealing with the authorities or for administrative formalities. The authorities may no longer require you to prove that you have a job, sufficient resources, health insurance and so on.

This document is particularly useful if you have a non-EU family member (spouse, registered partner, child or parent) living with you. He/she has the right to permanent residence and may be granted a permanent residence card. The conditions to fulfil are the same as for an EU national. In addition, if you have acquired the permanent right of residency before the mandatory 5-year period, your non-EU family member may benefit from the same advantage and have his/her permanent residence card sooner than expected.  

The permanent residence card for non-EU family members is issued within 6 months after the application being submitted, valid for 10 years and automatically renewable every 10 years. 

Don’t forget that even if he/she holds a permanent residence card, your non-EU family member may still need a visa to travel within the EU!


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