Access to the profession

A number of activities may only be carried out by a company if the necessary conditions as to professional competence are met. These are the so-called protected professions.

Which companies are subject?

In Brussels and Wallonia, to put it simply, with a few exceptions, every company, whether a natural or legal entity, has to prove its professional knowledge in order to carry out its activities.

In Flanders, professional knowledge has been abolished.

Exceptions or exemptions

The following companies are exempt:

  • Large companies.
  • Companies not engaged in a commercial activity.
  • Companies engaged in an intellectual service activity.
  • Companies that carry out activities with their own professional conditions.
  • Companies registered before the date of entry into force of the protection of the specific profession under the Programme Law of 01/02/1998.
  • The acquirer for one year
  • The partner or children of a deceased company director for a limited period of time.

Who can provide proof?

  • In a company, this is the person in charge of day-to-day management, or an employee with an unlimited contract.
  • In a company as a natural entity, it is the company director, the cohabiting partner, family in the first or second degree, an independent helper, or a staff member with an unlimited contract.

Which proof can be used?

  • A valid domestic or foreign diploma. A database called Diplo collects a lot of information about the diplomas that are valid and already approved by law.
  • Practical experience gained during the last 15 years as an independent company director, as an employee in a profession-specific position or as an independent helper. This varies from one profession to another.
  • An EC declaration for nationals of the European Economic Area, or Switzerland.

Messages appear regularly on this site. If you have any doubts or questions, you can always enlist our services in connection with the proof of professional knowledge.