Artists and creatives with German citizenship travel to other EU countries to engage in artistic activities

An independent stage designer from Germany wants to work at a theater in Paris for two months on a fee basis. What documents must he/she apply for?  

Territorial access to other EU countries

Artists and creatives who are German citizens need only a valid identity card to travel to another EU country and stay there. However, the EU member countries may require them to register with the authorities if the duration of stay and employment exceeds three months (see below). 

Market access to other EU countries for the self-employed as well as for employees 

Access to other member states of the EU single market is ensured by freedom of establishment and services and freedom of movement for workers (Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU)). 

The cross-border activities of self-employed persons are governed by freedom of services (Art. 57 TFEU), which should not be confused with freedom of establishment and freedom of movement for workers (Art. 45 TFEU). Freedom of services is defined as the right to provide services in another member country. For this purpose, a self-employed person may complete the necessary work in another member state and a company may temporarily send (“post”) its employees there to complete some work. Restrictions apply to posted employees that are citizens of a third country, because they do not necessarily enjoy the same freedoms as EU citizens. It may be necessary, for example, to complete a visa procedure if the employee is subject to visa requirements in the member state to which he/she is posted (Vander Elst visa).

A German graphic designer would like to settle in Antwerp and open a studio. As a German citizen, he/she does not need a work or residence permit for Belgium but only needs to register his/her business in accordance with Belgian law and observe the appropriate local formalities. 

Information about permanent residency within the EU can be found on the website of the European Commission, which also lists the national contact points and European information services in all European languages and organized according to their respective countries.

To top