Application for and modification of a business permit

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Apart from a few exceptions, any economic activity carried out on a regular basis is subject to the prior granting of a business permit.

As a rule, you must apply for a business permit if you wish to engage in the following professional activities, either as a self-employed person or as a company:

  • a commercial activity (trade, HORECA (hotel, restaurant and café), transports, industry, etc.);
  • a craft activity (food, fashion, construction, mechanical engineering, audiovisual, entertainment, art, etc.);
  • certain liberal professions which are mainly intellectual in nature.

The holder of a business permit must notify certain changes (for example: change of the managing director's usual place of residence, change of place of business, etc.) to the General Directorate for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (see 'Mandatory notifications').

You can find the number of a company's business permit or check whether the company has a business permit by using the 'Search business permits' tool available on our website.

Who is concerned?

The business permit is granted to the business if you meet the legal requirements in terms of:

In order to apply for a business permit you must be:

  • the owner of the business (if the activity is carried out in your own name); or
  • the legal representative of the company registered with the Trade and Companies Register (Registre de commerce et des sociétés - RCS), if the business has the legal form of a company.

You may not be appointed as the managing director of more than 2 craft businesses (which are not part of the same group of businesses) operating in the trades on lists A and B, unless you hold, directly or indirectly, at least 25 % of the shares in each of these businesses.

Special cases

Self-employed sales agents require a business permit as traders. Their salaried representatives are exempt from any specific permit but must carry out their activity under the cover of a business permit granted to their employer. It is therefore advisable to provide them with proof of their employer’s permit and proof of their recruitment.

Lawyers, physicians, dentists, veterinaries or statutory auditors (réviseurs d'entreprises) exercise liberal professions covered by laws other than those governing the authorisation of establishment.

Providers of intellectual services not included in the list of liberal professions must apply for a business permit for commercial activities and services.

Persons who sell their own products (craftwork, artwork, jam, honey, etc.), recycled items or items they did not purchase for commercial purposes, are not considered to be professionals and are therefore not required to have a business permit. However, they must hold a business permit for commercial activities and services if they wish to participate in fairs and markets or if they are operating a dedicated website to sell their goods online.

EU businesses that supply occasional and temporary services in Luxembourg do not require a business permit. Skilled craftsmen and manufacturers nevertheless have to submit a prior notification to the General Directorate for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises.

Non-EU nationals who wish to set up in Luxembourg as self-employed persons must submit their business permit application together with their application for an authorisation to stay as a self-employed person. By doing so, they only have to send in a single dossier to the Minister of Immigration who then transfers the business permit section to the General Directorate for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises.

Journalistic or book authoring activities that do not involve self-publishing, as well as school projects involving entrepreneurial activity for educational purposes that do not generate an annual turnover excluding tax of more than EUR 35,000, are not subject to a business permit.

Prerequisites

To obtain a business permit, you must meet the following conditions:

  • professional integrity;
  • professional qualification in line with the planned activity:
  • establishment in Luxembourg; the business permit is only granted if there is a physical installation in Luxembourg that includes an infrastructure suitable for the nature and scale of the concerned activity;
  • effective and permanent management of the business by the business permit holder who must:
    • be physically present in the establishment at all times to ensure effective day-to-day management of the business;
    • be effectively connected to the business (as an owner or legal representative of the business);
  • compliance with tax and business obligations: the business manager must not have evaded business and tax obligations (including withholding tax) in their previous or current business activities, whether these activities were carried out in their own name or through a company run by said business manager.

The final granting of the business permit requires that the articles of association are filed with the Trade and Companies Register (RCS).

In order to request the permit online via MyGuichet.lu, applicants must have a LuxTrust 'Private' or 'Pro' certificate and be registered on MyGuichet.lu.

Costs

The stamp duty for the issue of a business permit amounts to EUR 50.

Proof of payment of stamp duty (droit de chancellerie) should be attached to the application in the form of:

  • either a EUR 50 tax stamp purchased from the Registration Duties, Estates and VAT Authority (AED);
  • or the proof of payment of EUR 50 into the IBAN account LU76 0019 5955 4404 7000, BIC: BCEELULL of the Diekirch Revenue Office, with the following communication: 'autorisation de commerce'.

The online payment procedure is integrated into the online business permit application procedure via MyGuichet.lu.

The notification is not subject to stamp duty.

How to proceed

Submitting the application

You can submit your application for a business permit in 2 ways, the first of which is strongly recommended:

  • by filling in your business permit application yourself online via your professional eSpace on MyGuichet.lu, using a LuxTrust product.
    The system uses the information you have entered to determine which documents you need to enclose with your application;
  • by sending the business permit application by postal mail to the General Directorate for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises.

Anyone can get help with their business permit application through:

Documents to be submitted with the application

A list of documents to be attached to the application for a business permit:

Application processing time

Applications will usually be processed within 3 months from the receipt of the complete application. The absence of a response before the end of the 3-month period is equivalent to a tacit authorisation.

Appeal

A negative decision regarding an application for a business permit is an administrative decision against which the usual means of appeal (informal appeal, judicial appeal) can be used, provided the legal deadlines are complied with.

It is also possible to file a claim with the Ombudsman.

Issue of the permit

If the business permit is granted, it will be sent to you online via the MyGuichet.lu platform.

A 2D barcode is assigned to each business permit.

This barcode must be displayed on letters, emails, websites, price quotes, invoices and shop fronts of all sales outlets, as well as on the signs that must be installed at all construction sites.

Validity of the permit

The business permit expires:

Modifying an existing business permit

The holder of a valid permit must request a new permit in the event of:

  • a change or extension of the company's objects;
  • a change of a company director to whom the qualification and professional integrity relate.

Mandatory notifications

You must notify the General Directorate for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises within one month of:

  • obtaining the guarantee for package travel and linked travel arrangements;
  • the opening of a branch office;
  • a change in the company's place of business (attach a copy of the lease contract);
  • the creation or closure of any sales outlet;
  • a change in the business manager's usual place of residence.

The notification can be submitted by post or email.

Obligations of all professionals

Each company must comply with the following throughout their existence:

  • all requirements with respect to obtaining a business permit;
  • all laws and regulations with respect to business management.

Sanctions

Professionals without a business permit run the risk of criminal sanctions (imprisonment and fines) and the temporary closure of the establishment.

Online services and forms

Who to contact

General Directorate for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (Department for Authorisations of Establishment)

  • Ministry of the Economy General Directorate for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (Department for Authorisations of Establishment)
    Luxembourg
    PO box 535 / L-2937 Luxembourg
    The telephone helpline is open Monday to Friday, from 9.00 to 12.00 and 13.30 to 16.30 (not on public holidays).

Reception desk of the General Directorate for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises at the 'House of Entrepreneurship'

  • Ministry of the Economy Reception desk of the General Directorate for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises at the 'House of Entrepreneurship'
    14, rue Erasme L-1468 Luxembourg Luxembourg
    Closed ⋅ Opens Wednesday at 9.00
    Sunday:
    Closed
    Monday:
    Closed
    Tuesday:
    Closed
    Wednesday:
    9.00 to 12.30
    Thursday:
    Closed
    Friday:
    Closed
    Saturday:
    Closed
    Opening hours: by appointment only on Wednesdays from 9.00 to 12.30

House of Entrepreneurship

Related procedures and links

Procedures

Constitutional documents and articles of association Commercial activities Liberal professions requiring a business permit Skilled craft activities Business operations and services: House of Entrepreneurship Craft activities: 'Contact Entreprise' at the Chamber of Skilled Trades and Crafts Conditions of residence for self-employed third-country workers

Links

Further information

Publications

Legal references

  • Loi modifiée du 2 septembre 2011

    réglementant l'accès aux professions d'artisan, de commerçant, d'industriel ainsi qu'à certaines professions libérales

  • Règlement grand-ducal modifié du 1er décembre 2011

    1. d'établir la liste et le champ d'application des activités artisanales prévues à l'article 12(1) de la loi du 2 septembre 2011 réglementant l'accès aux professions d'artisan, de commerçant, d'industriel ainsi qu'à certaines professions libérales ; 2. de déterminer les critères d'équivalence prévus à l'article 12(3) de la loi du 2 septembre 2011 réglementant l'accès aux professions d'artisan, de commerçant, d'industriel ainsi qu'à certaines professions libérales

  • Règlement grand-ducal du 1er décembre 2011

    déterminant les modalités de l'instruction administrative prévue à l'article 28 de la loi du 2 septembre 2011 réglementant l'accès aux professions d'artisan, de commerçant, d'industriel ainsi qu'à certaines professions libérales

  • Règlement grand-ducal modifié du 3 février 2012

    précisant les modalités des formations prévues aux articles 7, 8 (1) c), 9 b) et 10 (1) b) de la loi du 2 septembre 2011 réglementant l'accès aux professions d'artisan, de commerçant, d'industriel ainsi qu'à certaines professions libérales

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