Hosting an au pair means welcoming a young person from abroad for a temporary period of stay with the family, in return for minor routine family tasks, so that the young person can:
- improve their language skills;
- improve their general culture by improving their knowledge of the country of stay by encouraging them to participate in the country's cultural activities.
To avoid any abuse, the hosting of an au pair is strictly regulated and the rights and duties of both the host family and the au pair are clearly defined.
Who is concerned
Any young person (girl or boy):
- aged between 18 and 29 years;
- residing in a country other than Luxembourg.
The young person must:
- hold a certificate giving them access to higher education in their country of origin, or prove that they have attended school until at least age 17;
- have a basic knowledge of:
- one of the languages used by the host family;
- English or one of the country's 3 administrative languages (German, French or Luxembourgish);
- have signed an au pair hosting agreement with an approved host family;
- not have any family ties up to the 4th degree inclusive with any of the host family members.
How to proceed
Finding a host family
Before leaving their country, the young person must find a host family.
Agencies or associations specialising in au pair applications can draw up a list of young people interested in becoming an au pair.
The young person also needs to find out about the conditions of entry and stay in Luxembourg.
Filing an application
The au pair must obtain the approval of the Minister of Family and Integration before he or she can be an au pair in Luxembourg.
To obtain the approval, they must send the completed application for approval by post to the National Youth Service (Service national de la Jeunesse - SNJ).
The application must be accompanied by the following:
- a copy of the study certificate/diploma from the country of origin;
- a medical certificate issued less than 3 months before their arrival. This certificate attests to the au pair's ability to perform minor routine family tasks, including childcare;
- a copy of a valid identity card or passport;
- a sworn statement that there is no family relationship between the host family and the au pair;
- the au pair hosting agreement signed with the host family.
A copy of the ministerial approval obtained must be sent to the CCSS when the au pair is registered for social security.
The processing of the complete application may take between 4 and 6 weeks.
The SNJ will return incomplete applications to the applicant.
Approval may be refused if the young person does not meet the conditions required.
Before leaving the country of residence, the au pair must sign a hosting agreement with the host family.
This agreement specifies the rights and duties of each party.
The agreement includes the following elements:
- the duration of the au pair's stay (which may not exceed one year);
- the time devoted to family chores and provisional "work" hours;
- days of rest;
- the place of stay of the au pair and the housing conditions;
- the tasks to be performed by the au pair and the resources available to them to carry out these tasks;
- language classes for the au pair paid for by the host family;
- the amount of pocket money for the au pair for the full duration of their stay;
- a note that the agreement has been entered into subject to the condition precedent of approval by both the host family and the au pair.
In order to ensure that the file is processed quicky, it is strongly recommended that the host family introduce a complete file to the SNJ, i.e. both:
- the application for approval of the family and the supporting documents requested;
- the application for approval of the au pair and the supporting documents requested;
- the hosting agreement signed by both parties.
The au pair must commit to:
- participate in a mandatory information session upon arrival, organised by the National Youth Service (SNJ);
- attend language courses during their stay;
- abide by the legislation relating to the entry and stay of foreigners;
- not carry out any salaried or freelance work during their time as an au pair;
- participate in a mid-term evaluation session organised by the SNJ.
The au pair:
- is affiliated to the Joint Social Security Centre (sickness and accident insurance) by the host family for the duration of their stay;
- is covered by civil liability insurance concluded by the host family;
- is granted:
- at least 3 free evenings per week;
- a full day of rest each week;
- 2 additional days of rest per month;
- sufficient time to allow them:
- to attend language courses (paid for by the host family);
- to improve their cultural knowledge;
- is fed and housed;
- is granted a private room and has unrestricted access to the home;
- receives an allowance corresponding to 1/5th of the social minimum wage as pocket money. The allowance must be paid even during the days of rest.
The host family must cover the costs of early repatriation of the au pair in the event of:
- sickness or accident;
- withdrawal of the au pair's approval or the host family's approval.
Validity of the approval
The approval is valid for the duration of the au pair hosting agreement concluded between the young person and the host family. The approval can be withdrawn if the au pair:
- has used fraudulent practices or made false declarations to obtain the approval;
- does not respect their obligations.
The stay of the au pair will automatically end:
- at the end of the hosting agreement;
- in case of withdrawal of the host family's approval; or
- in case of withdrawal of the au pair's approval.
Premature end of the au pair's stay
The au pair hosting agreement may be terminated before its term:
- with immediate effect in the event of force majeure or gross misconduct on the part of one of the parties;
- with at least one month's notice in all other cases.
In this case, the party who intends to terminate the agreement must:
- inform the other party in writing;
- send a copy of the letter to the National Youth Service (SNJ).
If the host family intends to terminate the agreement, it must, before any decision is taken, invite the person concerned to an interview. During this interview:
- the reasons for the planned decision are explained;
- the au pair is given the opportunity to share their view of the situation.
At the interview, each party has the right to request the attendance of a representative of the SNJ, provided that the other party is informed in advance and in good time.