Pictogram Freedom-seeker


Pictogram Freedom-seeker

CHercheur.euse de liberté

Pictogram Homeless person


Pictogram Asylum seeker


Pictogram Asylum seeker

Demandeur.euse.s de protection internationale

Pictogram Refugee


Pictogram Refugee


Pictogram Professional


Pictogram Professional



General information responsibilities

Asylum seekers have the right to access to a lawyer in any stage of any types of asylum procedures. Having a lawyer is not an obligation but it would be very helpful because the procedures for obtaining a residence permit in Belgium are sometimes complicated. It is totally free of charge but some applicants would rather pay personally to their lawyer. You have the right to request for another lawyer, if you think you are not feeling comfortable with him/her.

How to find a lawyer

Finding a lawyer is possible by one of the following ways: 

  • Introduction by a person or a supporting organisation 
  • Introduction by a social assistant
  • Asking from the Legal Aid Office (Bureau Juridische Bijstand/Bureau D’aide Juridique) at Regentschapsstraat/Rue de la Regence 63, 1000 Brussels. 

If your annex 26 and orange card/aneex 35 are in Dutch, go to floor -1, for French go to floor +1.

Lawyer responsibilities

  • Helping applicants to prepare for the interview. 
  • attending the main interview in CGRS (but not in the first short interview in IBZ) and adding comments after a personal interview for about 10 minutes. 
  • Asking to look into the applicant’s file and request copies of the notes of interview
  • Making appeals especially against negative decisions within 8 working days. 

You may have several meetings with your lawyer. However, it is only possible for a maximum of three times to get free tickets from your reception center to meet a lawyer. You are also allowed to have a free call to your lawyer from the center in necessary times. You will receive a letter showing you are a resident of the center from the procedure office to deliver to your lawyer in your first meeting. 


The lawyer and/or another trusted person chosen by the asylum seeker can attend a main long interview in CGRS. A trusted person may assist him/her during the asylum procedure and has to be professionally qualified in assisting persons or specialized in aliens’ law. He\she can be a social worker, representative of NGOs with knowledge of asylum matters, a psychologist or therapist.

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