Leaving Luxembourg and Moving On
Find out how to close bank accounts, end contracts for utilities and insurance, export cars, move pets and notify schools and residency officials when leaving Luxembourg...
Whatever the reasons for leaving Luxembourg and moving on elsewhere, there are a number of tasks to be completed before departure.
Anyone who registered with their Embassy on arrival must advise them that they are moving on. They should also let the Embassy know of their next destination.
When leaving Luxembourg, notify the local Municipal Office (Commune) of the exact date of departure. The Commune will issue a departure document (déclaration de départ) if requested. The residence permit (Titre de Séjour) or the previous address registration (Attestation d'enregistrement) will be retained by the authorities.
The person's departure will affect all local taxes and payments; some refunds may be made or additional payments required based on the date of departure during the calendar year. Some local taxes are not refundable.
Give schools a reasonable amount of notice of a child's departure. There may be outstanding bills for school fees, transport or meals to be settled.
On registration at a new school in the new country a parent may be asked for a certificate stating the latest grade passed by the child. This should be requested from the school when giving notice of departure. Luxembourg schools will provide the latest results (bulletins) and a summary of the child's progress and up-to-date test results. This is usually done in French or German, but may be done in English on request.
Leave a forwarding address for any correspondence.
The termination period of a rental contract can vary depending on the clauses in the agreement between the landlord and the tenant. To end an agreement the tenant can give three months' notice in writing by registered letter. Some landlords may accept a shorter notice period at their own discretion. Presenting a new tenant to the landlord may result in the acceptance of a reduced notice period.
The original inventory report (état des lieux) is reviewed together by the exiting tenant and the owner. All damages excluding fair wear and tear are agreed.
The landlord/agent has up to six months to reimburse the deposit, deducting any money needed for repairs to the property. If the departing tenant feels that an unnecessary amount has been deducted, they may request to see the invoices or estimates for work done. In the event of a dispute, the matter can be passed to a lawyer.
Property sale can take some time. The property agent will deal with visits and agree on the terms of the sale based on the agreement (mandat). The diagnostics report may be prepared before departure as it is valid for ten years. If a report was established within the last ten years, this will not be necessary.
For rented properties, insurance can be cancelled as soon as the property agreement comes to an end.
If leaving Luxembourg before the property is sold, the insurance cannot be cancelled. Check the terms and conditions of the policy to ensure they are no limitations of insurance depending on whether it is occupied or empty. In any case, property insurance can be modified to reflect the content value. Cancellation can occur at completion date when the property is sold. To cancel the insurance, send a registered letter to the insurance company. The insured person may qualify for a partial refund.
Home security and alarms
If a contract has been taken out with a home security company, contact them to inform them of the move.
Utility companies will need to be informed of the new address even if moving outside of Luxembourg. Utility bills will need to be settled and meters read. If meters are situated inside the property, access will be required.
To cancel an account, the tenant/owner should contact the electricity and gas supplier at least a week before moving and organise a final meter reading before the account is closed. This can be done online or by downloading the moving house form.
Water is generally provided by the Service des Eaux of the Commune. However, in some areas of the country, the water supply is subcontracted to a private supplier.
To disconnect the water supply contact the appropriate supplier at least a week before moving. In most cases this will be at the local office of the Service des Eaux, at the Town Hall/municipality office of the place of residence.
Telephone and Internet
There are several telephone companies in Luxembourg, but to be connected to the land line network, an initial subscription must be taken with POST, the national Luxembourg telecommunications company.
To cancel a telephone line subscription, contact POST at least 15 days before the date on which the subscription is to end.
If another supplier is used, contact them at the same time to give notice for any land line services and Internet or mobile phone packages. Internet providers may also request that any equipment provided be returned.
To cancel a mobile telephone subscription, contact the appropriate service provider. Mobile phone contracts are often signed for a period of one or two years, it may not be possible to cancel until the time period of the initial contract has finished. When cancelling the contract before term, it may be useful to include a document proving that the cancellation is due to a move abroad, for example a copy of the déclaration de départ.
Anyone who has received dental or medical treatment while in Luxembourg should ask for their records to be forwarded to their new practitioner and, if possible, get a copy.
If a private health insurance cover is in force, contact the company to cancel the contract or to inform them of the new address if the policy can be carried over to another country.
Organisations such as the Family Allowances Office should be contacted to cancel any benefits, for example child allowance. The social security card will need to be handed in or returned by mail to the Social Security Centre (Centre Commun de la Sécurité Sociale).
It is not recommended to close a bank account immediately when leaving the country as some outstanding invoices may remain and direct debits may still be in place. In addition, insurance companies, tax office, landlord and other companies may need to refund outstanding balances.
Any direct debits (domiciliation) and standing orders (ordre permanent) should be cancelled. A list of all direct debits can usually be obtained from the bank. Before cancelling a direct debit, it is recommended to ensure that all invoices have been settled.
Many banks allow clients to close accounts and change addresses online. If this service is not available, accounts should be closed in person or by sending a registered letter.
Credit card companies will also need to be notified of a new address to send statements to.
The new address should be provided to the tax office (as indicated on the last tax return).
Post can be forwarded to a new address for an annual fee. The service must be organised at the local post office at least three days before moving. Complete an application form, submit it to the post office and the mail will be redirected for the period required.
To request mail forwarding it is necessary to provide:
- proof of identity
- proof of the old address and details of the new address
Cars and bikes
In case of an export, the owner must follow the applicable procedure for importing a car in that specific country. Contact the local Embassy or Consulate for information on registration procedures and local regulations in the destination country.
If requested, Luxembourg insurance companies can provide a proof of no claims bonus or the level of discount applicable when the policy is cancelled. Because the discount percentage and the associated level of no claims bonus are not identical in all countries, it is important to ensure both are indicated on the certificate.
Car road tax
If the car is sold, the road tax (vignette) should be returned to the issuing office as a partial refund may be possible.
Depending on the destination, some animals may require a period of quarantine. Their move will almost certainly require documentation and possible additional vaccinations or similar medical treatment.
Most domestic pets require documentation before they can travel. The EU pet passport covers dogs, cats and ferrets for movement within Europe, and the Pets Travel Scheme (PETS) allows qualifying domestic pets to travel to and from the UK without a period of quarantine. Local vets can provide information and documentation.
Travelling to other EU destinations with pets with passports (cats, dogs and ferrets) is relatively straightforward; relocating to a non-EU country may be more complicated. Contact the Embassy in the new country of residence for up-to-date information.