[Article 61 of the Act of 15 December 1980 and Articles 100, §§ 2 and 3 of the Royal Decree of 8 October 1981]
The formal obligation must comply with Annex 32 of the Royal Decree of 8 October 1981.
The formal obligation is only proof of sufficient means of subsistence for the third-country national concerned if the obligation is accepted, as the case may be, by the Belgian diplomatic or consular post abroad, the Immigration Office or the municipal administration.
NOTE: If the guarantor resides abroad, but in a country other than the country in which the third-country national resides, the post responsible for legalising their signature and verifying that the conditions set out above have been met will affix the entry "Satisfactory solvency" if the formal obligation is accepted. The formal obligation that does not bear this indication will not be considered as proof of sufficient means of subsistence for the third-country national.
The guarantor must be a natural person at least eighteen years of age (18) or be emancipated.
The guarantor must have Belgian nationality, or be a citizen of the European Union who has a right of residence for more than three months in Belgium or another Member State of the European Union, or be a third-country national admitted or authorised to reside indefinitely in Belgium or another Member State of the European Union, or be a relative up to the third degree of the third-country national to whom a formal obligation is to be undertaken.
Please note: This kinship tie must be proven by documentation – that is, by one or more birth certificates or other official documents, legalised/apostilled where appropriate. If the guarantor cannot validly prove their relationship of kinship in the first, second or third degree, the formal obligation cannot be accepted.
The guarantor must have regular and sufficient means of subsistence for themselves, for each dependent person and for each dependent third-country national.
These means must be at least equal to 120% of the amount of the living wage granted to a person living with a dependent family, i.e. 2.048,53 euros net/month. (https://www.mi-is.be/fr/lequivalent-du-revenu-dintegration-sociale)
To this amount is added the minimum amount that each dependent third-country national must have, namely 789 euros net/month (amount set for the 2023/2024 academic year).
A guarantor taking on a formal obligation to a student will need to prove that they have at least 2.048,53 euros net/month + 789 euros net/month) = 2,837,53 euros net/month.
Attention: Funds obtained from the supplementary assistance systems (living wage and guaranteed family benefits), financial social services, family benefits, unemployment benefits, integration benefits and bridging benefits are not taken into account.
When they present themselves for the legalisation of their signature to the municipal administration for their place of residence in Belgium or, if they reside abroad, to the Belgian diplomatic or consular post competent for their place of residence, the guarantor must present the following documents:
- a formal obligation in accordance with Annex 32 of the Royal Decree of 8 October 1981 and that has been completed, dated and signed;
- if they are performing activity as an employee: minimum 3 recent pay slips and their employment contract or an employer's certificate clarifying the type and effective duration of the employment contract, where the employment contract must be valid either for at least one academic year or the intended duration of the studies or for 12 months;
- if they are performing activity as a self-employed person: a document, drawn up by a public administration, showing their monthly or annual net/gross income, proof of payment of social security contributions, as well as registration with the Crossroads Bank for Enterprises;
- if they reside abroad and cannot produce foreign documents equivalent to those mentioned above: any other document, prepared by a public administration, showing the amount of their income.
The formal obligation will be accepted only if the guarantor meets all the conditions set forth above.
The guarantor undertakes, in respect of the dependent third-country national, the Belgian State and any competent public social welfare centre, for the duration of the planned stay, to bear the costs of any healthcare, housing, studies and repatriation of the dependent third-country national.
The guarantor, along with the dependent third-country national, is jointly and severally liable for the payment of the costs for healthcare, residence, studies and repatriation of the third-country national.