The Government may allow social assistance benefits for artists who work professionally creating cultural assets and producing artistic works. Entitlement to social assistance benefits is granted for a period of 24 months. Entitlement may be renewed without limit, provided that the artist continues to fulfil the legal requirements.
Who is concerned
The following parties are eligible to receive social assistance benefits as a self-employed professional artist:
- artists who create and interpret in the areas of graphic and visual arts, the performing arts (in particular theatre and dance), literature, and music;
- creators and directors of artistic works , in particular those who make use of current or novel photographic, cinematographic, sound, audiovisual or other state-of-the-art technologies, be they digital or otherwise.
The following parties may not receive social assistance benefits:
- people involved in the creation of works that are intended or used for purely commercial or advertising purposes, or works that are pornographic, instigate violence or racial hatred, are apologetic towards crimes against humanity and, generally, contrary to public order and morality;
- people whose main activities are governed by the law amended on 2 September 2011 regulating access to the professions of craftsman, merchant, manufacturer, as well as certain liberal professions, and the regulations relating to them.
To be granted a social assistance benefit, the applicant must:
- be continuously registered in the Grand Duchy for at least 6 months prior to the date the request to obtain the social assistance benefit is made, and prove a commitment to the Luxembourg cultural and artistic scene;
- have performed, for at least 3 years immediately preceding the request, and without any condition of subordination, artistic services whose conditions were determined by the applicant and for which that applicant is economically and socially responsible;
- have earned income from their artistic activity amounting to at least 4 times the social minimum wage for unskilled workers, during the year preceding the submission of the request;
- have been registered with a pension insurance scheme as an independent intellectual worker for at least 3 years immediately preceding the request;
- not be entitled to benefits for workers in the entertainment industry without regular employment in the event of involuntary inactivity;
- not have received a replacement revenue (e.g.: unemployment benefits) under Luxembourg or foreign legislation.
The above-mentioned 3-year period is reduced to 12 months for a person who has a university level diploma confirming a complete cycle of study of at least 3 years, issued following specialised studies within one of the areas specified above, and which diploma has been recorded in the diploma registry. Such a person is also exempt from the condition of having a minimum annual artistic income at the time of their first request to obtain the social assistance benefit.
Artistic work may, where applicable, be carried out alongside a secondary non-artistic professional activity provided, however, that this activity, which is in this case secondary, does not generate annual income in excess of 12 times the monthly social minimum wage for skilled workers.
In cases of work disability covered by a period of sick leave of at least one month, maternity leave, adoption leave or parental leave, the 3- or 1-year period of activity preceding the request to obtain social assistance is suspended for the same duration as that of the work disability period.
How to proceed
Advantages to obtaining the social assistance benefit
A person who has been approved to receive the social assistance benefit as a self-employed professional artist, and whose monthly resources do not attain the monthly social minimum wage for skilled workers, is entitled to financial aid, which is intended to make up the difference between their income and the social minimum wage for skilled workers, and which cannot exceed half of the latter.
The artist's monthly resources are determined by taking into account their own gross income, be it professional or not.
This social financial aid may be collected monthly, at the artist's request.
However, even if all of the aforementioned conditions are met, no social financial aid is due for the months during which the person receiving the social assistance benefit as a self-employed professional artist collects:
- income that is greater than half the monthly social minimum wage for skilled workers from a secondary non-artistic professional activity; or
- allowances for workers without regular employment due to involuntary inactivity; or
- a replacement income as provided for under Luxembourg or foreign legislation (e.g.: unemployment benefits).
Request to obtain social assistance benefit
Requests to obtain the social assistance benefit should be submitted to the Minister of Culture using the form provided for that purpose. Requests should be accompanied by a file comprising:
- a detailed artistic curriculum vitæ (CV) with copies of all documents and exhibits referred to therein (for example: diplomas, awards, prizes, catalogues, selections at shows, appointments to juries, etc.);
- where applicable, proof of registration on the Register of Higher Education Certificates as provided for by the Law of 17 June 1963, enacted for the purpose of protecting higher education diplomas;
- a recent and complete certificate of registration—dated less than 2 months and specifying the registration start-date as well as the nature of the registration)—established by the Joint Social Security Centre (Centre commun de la sécurité sociale);
- a declaration containing the following wording, among other things: "Je déclare être artiste professionnel(le) indépendant(e), je crée / interprète (à choisir la notion qui convient) des œuvres pour mon compte. Mon travail en tant qu’artiste independant(e) est mon activité principale." ("I hereby declare that I am a self-employed professional artist, and that I create/interpret (choose the concept which best applies) artistic works on my own behalf. My work as an independent artist is my main source of employment.") In the declaration, the artist should further describe the nature of their artistic work, provide a description of the works they have created, or their repertoire produced during the contribution period which applies to them, and indicate their plans for the future (where applicable, proof of orders to produced);
- photos, reproductions or publications of their works, or a list of their repertoire;
- a list of works sold by them during the contribution period, with an indication of the sale prices, proofs of payment and, where applicable, copies of signed contracts concerning the artistic activity;
- a recent certificate of income issued by Luxembourg Inland Revenue (Administration des contributions directes);
- 3 testimonials concerning their work and their commitment to the Luxembourgish artistic and cultural scene , written by either the applicant's peers, or by promoters, distributors or editors, or by any professional involved in the art or audiovisual communication markets;
- any press kits;
- a declaration containing the following wording, among other things: "Je déclare ne pas percevoir de revenu de remplacement au titre de la législation luxembourgeoise ou étrangère" ("I hereby declare that I do not collect any replacement income under Luxembourg or foreign legislation") (For example: unemployment benefits, guaranteed minimum income;
- any other document or exhibit that the applicant deems useful for supporting their application.
Once submitted, the application is reviewed by a consulting commission comprising, among others, professional self-employed artists and government agents. The Ministry of Culture makes its decision based on this commissions' opinion.
The decision in respect of the financial aid benefit for self-employed professional artists must be sent to the applicant within 3 months of the receipt of the application and all of the supporting documents.
Renewal of entitlement to social assistance benefits
Entitlement to social assistance benefits is granted for 24 months.
Upon the expiration of this period, the entitlement to social aid may be renewed by sending a written request to the Minister of Culture using the form provided for that purpose.
Based on the opinion of the consulting commission, the Minister of Culture renews the entitlement to social assistance benefits for individuals who qualify after being admitted to the social assistance benefits programme, or after their admittance has been renewed.
The decision relating to the renewal of the financial aid for self-employed professional artists must reach the applicant within 3 months of the receipt of the application accompanied by all of the supporting documents.
Artistic and academic prizes awarded by Luxembourg or foreign public bodies, or by bodies to which the Grand-Duchy of Luxembourg belongs, are exempt from income tax since they are not derived from the delivery of an economic service.
Furthermore, self-employed professional artists may deduct, as operating expenditure, a minimum flat-rate of 25 % of the operating revenue from their business, as long as this deduction does not exceed EUR 12,500 per year.
If the profit from an artistic activity exceeds the average profit from the year in question and the preceding 3 full years, the profit is considered as extraordinary income and is subject to tax, but up to a rate of no more than 24 %.
Forms / Online services
Demande en obtention du bénéfice des aides à caractère social en faveur de l'artiste professionnel indépendant
Déclaration sur l'honneur en vue de l'obtention d'une aide mensuelle pour l'artiste professionnel indépendant