Social security

Students other than grant-assisted PhD students do not pay Belgian social security contributions but do need to take action regarding reimbursement of healthcare costs (see ‘Healthcare’ section).

Grant-assisted PhD students, as well as researchers and lecturers, with an employment contract are subject to social security contributions, which are deducted at the source and payable to the Belgian National Social Security Office (ONSS). These contributions will provide either full or partial (not including unemployment and pension) social security cover, depending on nationality.

The schemes covered by the social security system include:

  • compulsory health and incapacity insurance, healthcare sector;
  • compulsory health and incapacity insurance, benefits sector;
  • family allowance;
  • retirement and survivor pensions;
  • unemployment insurance;
  • annual holidays (for manual workers);
  • occupational accident insurance;
  • insurance for occupational diseases.