Belgium: Family Reunification Application Processing Time Extended

Due to the recent significant increase of family reunification applications, pending family reunification applications filed by a family member of a third-country national and those filed on or after July 8, 2016 will take nine months to process, instead of the current six months, according to a change in law. Immigration authorities may also extend the processing time twice for three months at a time.

The extended processing times apply to in-country applications and long-term family reunification visa applications filed separately from the principal applicant’s visa application.

What This Means for Foreign Nationals

Dependents of third-country nationals who file their long-term family reunification applications at a Belgian diplomatic post separately from the principal applicant’s visa application will have to wait nine months to receive a decision on their visa application. Dependents of third-country nationals who file their long-term family reunification applications in Belgium will also have to wait nine months to receive a decision, and, as a result, will be subject to additional travel restrictions during the processing period.

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