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Studying on a self-employed basis

KMO-portefeuille

The KMO-portefeuille grants subsidies for studies with recognised service providers. As such, a part of your tuition fee can be paid by the government.

Entrepreneurs or the liberal professions can make use of this. More information can be found on the website www.agentschapondernemen.be (website in Dutch only)
If you wish to pay via the KMO-portefeuille, take the following into account:
- Only the tuition fee can be paid via the KMO-portefeuille. This means that you cannot pay for course material, sports card, culture card, insurance, access to the digital learning environment for exam contracts and the administrative costs charged at deregistration.
- The application for the KMO-portefeuille must be submitted within two weeks after the start of the study program! Afterwards, this can no longer be accepted.
- The start date of the study program is the start date of the academic year or your actual enrolment date.
- You must always mention the correct tuition fee rate with your application. Take this into account when you register and register your ISP.
- As a service provider, you choose Odisee - Programmes with recognition number DV.O100326 or KU Leuven Campus Brussels with recognition number DV. O103 607
For more information, please contact the student administration of your campus.

Studying on a self-employed basis

If you have an independent activity in addition to your studies, you can apply for 'student-independent' status at your social insurance fund/entrepreneurial office if you are
  • between 18 and 25 years old;
  • registered for at least 27 credits with the purpose to obtain a diploma, unless you are completing a thesis or a compulsory internship (at the latest until you submit your thesis or finish your internship and for a maximum of one year);
If you do not meet the conditions to become a student self-employed person, you can still practise an independent profession.
Benefits with regard to social security as a student-independent person
As a student-independent person, you can benefit from a special social security contribution scheme and tax scheme.
If you have an income that is lower than the minimum income for the self-employed in your main occupation, you will benefit from a favourable social security contribution scheme:
  • You do not have to pay social security contributions if your net taxable annual income is lower than € 6.996,89;
  • You pay a reduced contribution of 20.5% on the part of the income between € 6.996,89 and € 13.993,78;
  • If your net taxable income in 2020 is equal to or higher than € 13.993,78 or if you do not have the status of a student self-employed person, you will pay social security contributions on your full income as a self-employed person, just like any self-employed person in your main occupation.
As a student-authorised worker, you are entitled to reimbursement of health care and during the periods for which you pay contributions (also reduced contributions) you are also entitled to incapacity for work, disability and maternity leave.
Advantages with regard to the tax status
Students working with a student working contract and the student-independent student are considered equal for the calculation of the persons dependant on their parents.
Attention! If you are self-employed, you are not bound by an employment contract and the labour court cannot intervene in any disputes between you and your client. So you are often on your own.
Students are often also blinded by the (theoretically) high profit percentage of self-employed work. However, you must also take into account the social and legal and fiscal consequences of self-employment. For more information, you can contact one of the many social secretariats for the self-employed or gather information via the National Institute for the Social Insurance of the Self-Employed (RSVZ).
Have your certificate filled in by sending your scanned certificate to sociaalstatuut@odisee.be (for Odisee students) or to sa.brussel@kuleuven.be (for KU Leuven students) to apply for the status.