Frequently asked questions

Frequently asked questions on passports, registration, nationality, visa, notary acts, and general information.

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In this section you will find FAQs on:


Are the passport forms available in English?

A. They are not available in English, only in one of the official Belgian languages: Dutch, French and German.

Q. Can I renew my passport/identity card without being registered?

A. The Embassy cannot renew your passport/identity card if you are still registered in Belgium.

If you are registered in another diplomatic  post, we need their prior approval.

Q. Is personal appearance compulsory?

A. Yes, personal appearance at the Embassy is compulsory in order to have your biometric data (finger prints, photo and signature) taken to obtain an ordinary passport.

Q. What is the difference between a passport and identity card?

A. The identity card and the passport are two different documents that do not have the same purpose.

The passport is a travel document that in principle allows you to travel to all countries worldwide. The identity card is a proof of registration in the Belgian national register. You cannot travel outside of Europe without a passport.

Each Belgian registered with an Embassy should have a valid Belgian ID card.

Q. Can my passport be issued in my married name?

A. Belgian passports are issued in your maiden name only. However, upon written request, your married name can be added on page 4 of the passport.

Q. Can a passport be extended?

A. Belgian passports cannot be extended, they have to be renewed.

Q. What is the validity of a passport?

A. Ordinary Belgian passports are valid for 7 years for adults or 5 years for minors.

Q. What is the difference between applying for a passport and applying for pre-registration?

A. When you apply for a passport and have your photograph, fingerprints and signature taken, you will receive the passport within a few weeks.

When you apply for pre-registration, your photograph, fingerprints and signature will be taken, after which date you then have 12 months to apply for your passport, without the need to re-appear in person.

Regardless of whether you choose to apply for a new passport or have your biometric data pre-registered you will need to make a personal appearance again when your passport expires.

Q. What to do if I lose my passport or it is stolen?

A. First you need to report the loss/theft to the local police, obtain a Police crime report number and subsequently contact the Embassy who will inform you of the steps to follow.


Q. Why should I register with the Embassy?

A. Registering allows the embassy or consulate to issue a passport, identity card, consular certificates (e.g. residence certificates, registration certificates, certificates of nationality, 'household composition' certificates, cohabitation, life certificates etc.). 

Q. How do I register?

A. To register please send the registration form, a copy of your passport and current visa (if applicable).

Please note that in order to register with the Embassy, you have to be deregistered from your Belgian commune.

Q. When should I register?

A. As soon as possible upon arrival in the jurisdiction of this Embassy.

Q. Do I have to deregister when I leave the jurisdiction?

A. No, if you return to Belgium or register with another diplomatic post in another country this information will appear automatically in the National Register.

It is, however, appreciated if you inform this Embassy.

Q. Are there consequences to the deregistration from the town hall?

A. Please contact your health insurance provider, the Tax department in Belgium or any other authorities directly regarding your personal and specific circumstances.


Q. Can I become an Australian or New Zealand citizen?

A. A Belgian who is at least 18 years and voluntarily acquires a foreign nationality no longer loses the Belgian nationality.

Since 9 June 2007 Belgians who acquire a nationality of a country that is not part of the Treaty of Europe, do not lose their Belgian nationality.

Since 28 April 2008 Belgians who acquire a nationality of a country that is part of the Treaty of Europe, do not lose their Belgian nationality. Countries that are part of the Treaty of Europe are Austria, the United Kingdom, Denmark, France, Spain, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Norway.


Q. Can I apply with a Honorary Consul ?

A. No, the application can only be made to the Embassy in Canberra.

Q. Can I do the fingerprints somewhere else?

A. No, this can only be done at the Embassy of Belgium in Canberra.

Q. Can I come in person to lodge my application?

A. Yes, but by appointment only. Please note that your application can only be handed over and will not be verified at that time.

The Embassy advises that you send your application to us, including your passport.

If you apply for a Schengen visa we will ask you to make an appointment for the biometric data collection.

Q. Can I contact you by telephone if I have questions

A. Please refer to the ‘Visa for Belgium’ information on our website, or email your question to

Q. Does the Embassy renew or give information about visas for the countries in the jurisdiction?

A. The Embassy has no competence in regards to these visas or to transfer your visa in your new passport.

Please contact the Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection directly.

For New Zealand visas, contact Immigration New Zealand.

Notary acts

Q. Do Honorary Consuls have competence regarding notary acts?

A. Honorary Consuls do not have this competence. Only the Embassy in Canberra has this competence and a notary act can only be signed in person at the Embassy.

Q. What format should a Power of Attorney have?

A. The Embassy will only process a power of attorney regarding Belgians or Belgian property drawn up by a Notary Public (notaris - notaire) in Belgium. Once the Power of Attorney has been approved by our Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Brussels you will be contacted to make an appointment to sign this document.

General information

Q. Where can I ask for Belgian civil status certificates (birth, marriage, …)?

A. Please contact the town hall where the event took place.

Q. Can the Embassy issue, renew or translate my (international) driver license?

A. The Embassy has no competence to issue, renew or translate an (international) driver license. You should contact the town hall or commune where you were last registered.

Q. Is it necessary to inform the Embassy if Im on holidays in the jurisdiction?

A. It is not necessary.

However, we strongly advise you to register on Travellers Online