The transition period for the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union ended on 31 December 2020. This departure has consequences for the university on various levels. We have compiled on a single page the main information currently known and links to more detailed information.
This page is regularly updated as new information becomes available.
1. Student and staff mobility
2. Collaborative projects
3. Registration fees
4. Visas and right of residence
5. Social Security
6. Equivalence of degrees and professional qualifications
7. Commercial transactions, patents, material transfer
Funding student mobility
- 2020-21 academic year. The terms and rates for mobility grants as provided for under the 2014-20 Erasmus programme and as published on the intranet at www.uclouvain.be/bourses-mobilite remain valid for the entire academic year.
- 2021-22 and 2022-23 academic years. A grant rate equivalent to that in force in 2020-21 will be guaranteed for outgoing mobility planned until the end of the 2022-23 academic year for students eligible for an exchange programme to the UK. Such students should contact the person in charge of international mobility in their faculty.
- New terms and conditions. Under the 2020-27 Erasmus programme, the UK will be considered a non-member country, but some forms of mobility may nevertheless be funded. Students should contact the person in charge of international mobility in their faculty. Note: the UK is setting up its own ‘Turing’ mobility programme. The programme’s details are not yet known.
Funding staff mobility
- 2020-21 academic year. The terms and rates of grants for mobility under the 2014-20 Erasmus programme continue to apply for the entire 2020-21 academic year. For more information, see the ‘staff mobility’ intranet page.
- New terms and conditions. Stays that can no longer be funded by the 2014-20 Erasmus programme will now be funded by the Mercator programme and/or the future FAME and Turing programmes. For more information, see the ‘staff mobility’ intranet page.
All collaborative projects funded under the 2014-20 Erasmus+ and Horizon 2020 programmes are proceeding as planned with UK partners.
The UK has decided not to participate in the 2021-27 Erasmus+ programme but will set up its own ‘Turing’ exchange programme. The programme’s details are not yet known. If you have any questions about the mobility programmes: email@example.com.
The Trade and Cooperation Agreement between the European Union and the United Kingdom provides for the possibility of the United Kingdom's participation in the Horizon Europe programme with the exception of the European Innovation Council (EIC) accelerator. The terms of this participation are still under negotiation. Both parties have indicated their wish that UK entities should be able to participate in Horizon Europe activities from the outset of the programme. If you have any questions about the Horizon Europe programme, please contact Amal Akheyar: firstname.lastname@example.org.
European Union students who began studies in the UK before the 2021-22 academic year remain on the same fee regime as UK nationals for the duration of the course. For European Union students who begin their studies in the UK in 2021-22, the fees are those applicable to international non-European Union students. More information is available on the UK government website.
UK students who began a course at UCLouvain retain Belgian student status for the duration of the course (no increased fees). UK students who begin a bachelor or master course from 2021-22 will be subject to the increased fee regime (unless they qualify for the exemption applied to non-European Union nationals). Note: the provisions relating to the right of residence have an impact on the admission calendar for UK students. Information will be updated on the UCLouvain admissions/enrolment website as soon as 2021-22 admissions open.
Right of residence in the UK
Any EU national who was in the UK before 1 January 2021 can apply for a residence permit under the EU Settlement Scheme until 30 June 2021.
Otherwise, the UK has introduced a new system of access to its territory via different ‘routes’. To check whether a visa is necessary and, if so, under what conditions, go to the UK government website . The table below summarises some specific access routes. As this information is subject to change, it is important to check the UK government website before departure.
Main access routes to the UK
|"Standard visitor visa"||
For stays of less than six months and provided that activities fall within the permitted categories.
This may be appropriate for course exchange programmes of less than six months, conference participation, laboratory visits.
Note that this is not suitable for (paid or unpaid) internships carried out without enrolment at a British university (for example, in the case of a company internship). In the case of an internship, it is important to check with the partner institution for the proper access route, as the situation differs from one type of internship to another.
See characteristics on the UK government website:
|« Student visa »||A system of points obtained based on a series of criteria is set up. It takes 70 points to obtain the visa.||
See characteristics on the UK government website.
|“Temporary Worker – Government Authorised Exchange visa"||
For study visits (not eligible for a Student visa) or an internship without enrolling at a university (for example, an Erasmus internship in a company). This is, however, subject to specific conditions.
|See characteristics on the UK government website.|
|« Skilled worker visa »||It is necessary to obtain 70 points based on a series of criteria in order to obtain the visa.||See characteristics on the UK government website.|
|« Global Talent visa »||No points. Simplified procedure but you must demonstrate ‘talent’.||See characteristics on the UK government website.|
|Other specialised routes||Ten other specialised routes exist.||See characteristics on the UK government website.|
Right of residence in Belgium for UK nationals
Any British person who arrived in Belgian territory before 1 January 2021 will be able to continue their stay under the same conditions as those of the transitional period. As a beneficiary of the withdrawal agreement, the person retains their right of residence permanently. However, a new residence card will have to be applied for. For more information, see the Belgian immigration office website.
Anyone arriving in the territory after 31 December 2020 is subject to the general rules applicable to all third-country nationals. For more information, see the Belgian immigration office website.
The UK’s exit from the European Union has implications for healthcare coverage during temporary stays as well as for the coordination of social security for persons in cross-border situations in relation to sickness, maternity/paternity, pensions, disability, unemployment, family benefits, accidents at work, and occupational diseases. The latest information on this subject is available on the Belgian Social Security website.
Note: the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC/EHIC) is no longer valid (except for stays begun before 1 January 2021). For the new social security provisions for temporary stays in the UK from 1 January 2021, see the INAMI website.
- General information on the equivalence of diplomas can be found on the ‘Equivalences’ webpage of the Wallonia-Brussels Federation .
- Regarding the recognition of professional qualifications, any application submitted before 31 December 2020 will be examined under the conditions in force during the transition phase and therefore in accordance with the European Directive on the recognition of professional qualifications. The decision will cover the period beyond the transition period. For an application for recognition of professional qualifications submitted in the UK from 1 January 2021, see the UK government website . For an application for recognition of professional qualifications submitted in Belgium from 1 January 2021, see the ‘Equivalences’ webpage of the Wallonia-Brussels Federation .
UK suppliers and customers, public procurement and taxes
From 1 January 2021, transactions with the UK are no longer intra-Community transactions but rather imports and exports: see the Belgian Federal Public Service Finance website. For more information, contact Lionel Leclercq at the UCLouvain Finance Department.
European patents and trademark registrations
European patents, which are governed by the European Patent Convention, do not fall within the scope of Union law. Thus they will remain valid in the UK after 1 January 2021.
EU trademarks and Community designs are titles under EU law. Therefore, titles will no longer be protected, automatically, in the UK. Hence applications for registration will have to be made to the institute responsible for industrial property in the UK (UKIPO). For titles already registered, and depending on the dates, different options can be considered. Questions: email@example.com.
Material Transfer Agreement
From 1 January 2021, the provisions on the transfer of material (e.g. biological material) are those relating to the transfer of material between Belgium and a third country. In general, when exporting goods and services outside the EU, it is necessary to be attentive and to take into account the applicable rules (export control, dual use, etc.). Questions: firstname.lastname@example.org.