Non-European citizen, how to obtain the status of highly qualified worker?

Maëlle Pintoavatar

Published on 03/04/2023, by Maëlle Pinto


In this article, we address any third-country national who would like to settle in Luxembourg and work there as a highly qualified worker for a period of at least 3 months. We detail the eligibility conditions and the steps to follow.


In addition to having a valid passport and, if necessary, a long-stay visa (type D visa), you must satisfy certain high qualification requirements to be eligible for this status.

Thus, you must present a valid employment contract of one year (or more) for a highly qualified job.

Additionally, you must provide a document attesting to your high professional qualifications related to the activity or sector mentioned in the employment contract.

Finally, your remuneration must be at least equal to 1.5 times the Luxembourg average gross annual salary (or 1.2 times for certain professions).

Prior steps

Before entering Luxembourg, you need to apply for a temporary authorization to stay at the Immigration Directorate of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs (MAEE).

The application for a residence permit is mandatory and must be filed by yourself or by a third party mandated (your future employer, for example). Note that if you already have a valid residence permit allowing you to work for any employer in the sector or profession in question or, in any profession or, for any employer in any sector, you are exempt from this procedure. Furthermore, if you are a family member of an EU citizen or any assimilated countries (Iceland, Norway, Liechtenstein, and Switzerland), you are also exempt from this procedure.

Once you have arrived in Luxembourg, you will need to declare your arrival to your new commune of residence within 3 days. You will then need to undergo a medical check-up and apply for a residence permit for highly qualified workers from third countries, also known as the "European Blue Card", no later than 3 months after your arrival in the country.

European Blue Card

In order to apply for your EU Blue Card (residence permit), you will be asked to submit some documents such as your passport, your temporary authorization to stay, or your declaration of arrival. Once your application has been accepted, you will have to go to the Immigration Directorate of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs to finalize your application.

Your residence permit will take effect from the declaration of arrival at the commune. It will be valid as long as the eligibility conditions are met, and if you can prove that you have worked during this period. This first residence permit is either valid for 4 years or for the duration of the employment contract (of more than 3 months) for a profession, in a particular sector with any employer.

This permit is renewable upon request to the Immigration Department of the MAEEE, 2 months before its expiration date.

Please note that if you wish to change jobs during the first validity period of your EU Blue Card, you will have to start the process from the beginning.

Ultimately, after 5 years of regular and uninterrupted stay in Luxembourg, you can apply for the long-term resident status.

Employment contract

With the highly qualified worker status, you will not be subject to the labor market test. Meaning that your future employer will not have to declare a vacant position to the ADEM (Agence de développement de l’emploi) beforehand and can decide to hire you directly.

Once you have signed your employment contract with your employer, you must submit your authorization and residence permit before starting to work. Your employer must also notify the MAEE of the beginning of your employment within 3 working days from the first day of work.

Note that any document submitted during your procedures must be translated into one of the official languages of Luxembourg, either English, French or German.

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