Documents for the Legal Cohabitation process

1. Your passport (of course)

2. Proof of civil status (authenticated & legalized)
This document should be first authenticated by your home country's department for foreign affairs before it can be legalized. This document should then be submitted to the Belgian Embassy/Consulate in your home country for legalization.

  • Are you unmarried? In that case, you must provide proof of unmarried status that is at the maximum 3 months old.
  • Are you divorced or a widow/widower? Then you must submit proof that you are not bound by another marriage (proof that your former marriage has been dissolved or proof of the death of your partner)
  • Are your documents not in English, Dutch, French, or German? They will need to be translated (this can be done in Belgium).

3. Birth certificate (authenticated & legalized)
This document should be first authenticated by your home country's department for foreign affairs before it can be legalized. This document should then be submitted to the Belgian Embassy/Consulate in your home country for legalization. This will need to be translated if not in English, Dutch, French, or German (this can be done in Belgium).

4. Police clearance
Certification indicating that you have no convictions for crimes or offenses in your home country

5. Bijlage/Annexe 3bis (Affidavit of Support)
This is proof of your partner's pledge to be your guarantor while you are in Belgium. If you are arriving in Europe with a one-way ticket, it's important to have this with with you. Your partner can obtain this at his/her local city hall.

6. Travel medical insurance

  • Minimum coverage of 30,000 Euros
  • Must be valid in all Schengen countries
  • Must cover a minimum of 3 months

If you are from the Philippines, you can request travel insurance from my website (in partnership with Standard Insurance and Gazelle Travel & Tours) in this link.

7. Proof of your relationship with your partner
This can be digital. See my post here about how to organize your proof.

8. Passport photos
Guidelines

  • Dimensions of the photo: height 45 mm, width 35 mm; Dimensions of the head must be between 25 and 40 mm
  • The background of the photo must be white
  • Don't wear accessories unless for a medical or religious reason
  • There is sufficient contrast between yourself and the background
  • Your face is clearly visible, without shadow or overexposure
  • Your face is completely visible and is in the middle of the photo
  • You look straight ahead

9. Any other documents returned to you upon receipt of your Type C Visa
This is only applicable for citizens of 3rd world countries who need a visa to go to Belgium. In my case, I got back the following:

  • Bijlage/Annexe 3bis
  • Authenticated & legalized birth certificate
  • Authenticated & legalized certificate of civil status
  • Authenticated & legalized police clearance
  • Medical certificate

Documents for finding work in Belgium

  • Diploma
  • Transcript of Records
  • Copy of dissertation/thesis (digital is sufficient)
  • Certificates of Employment
  • Official study programme describing the content of the subjects (an official certificate issued by the university)

Click here for my guide on how to get a job in Belgium

Driver's license

Apply for/renew your driver's license in your home country before coming to Belgium. The process of taking the Belgian driving test is very long and expensive, so it is advisable to do it in your home country. If your country has an agreement with Belgium, you will be able to easily convert your foreign license into a Belgian equivalent (the Philippines, for example, has one). More details here.