The Belgian government has plans to introduce a “foreigners’ tax” to help cover some of the administrative costs associated with residence authorization applications. The proposal comes as the result of the growing number of applications and their resulting workload. The proposal suggests that in order to file a residence authorization application, the foreigner will first have to pay a fixed amount. This requirement will hold for both applicants in Belgium and those abroad. If the tax is not paid, the application will not be considered. Most likely, work permit holders and family members, students, some researchers, and Blue Card holders will be subject to the tax. The following individuals would be exempt from the tax: EEA, Swiss, and Turkish citizens and their family members; asylum seeks and recognized refugees; victims of human trafficking; and non-accompanied minors. Many details, including the tax amount and the implementation date, have yet to be determined.

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