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BELGIUM: Permanent Residence for EU Citizens and Family Members Now Requires Five (Instead of Three) Years

Under article 16 of Directive 2004/38/EC on the right of citizens of the EU and their family members to move and reside freely within the territory of the Member States, a right to permanent residence may be granted to citizens of the Union and most family members after legal residence for a continuous period of five years in the host Member State.

When implementing Directive 2004/38/EC in 2007, Belgium allowed a right to permanent residence after legal residence for a continuous period of three years in Belgium.

By means of an Act, dated June 28, 2013, and effective July 11, 2013, the required residence term has been extended to five years.

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