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On the conditions of entry and residence of third-country nationals for the purposes of highly qualified employment
Article 18

Article 18 — Conditions

  1. After eighteen months of legal residence in the first Member State as an EU Blue Card holder, the person concerned and his family members may move to a Member State other than the first Member State for the purpose of highly qualified employment under the conditions set out in this Article.
  2. As soon as possible and no later than one month after entering the territory of the second Member State, the EU Blue Card holder and/or his employer shall present an application for an EU Blue Card to the competent authority of that Member State and present all the documents proving the fulfilment of the conditions set out in Article 5 for the second Member State. The second Member State may decide, in accordance with national law, not to allow the applicant to work until the positive decision on the application has been taken by its competent authority.
  3. The application may also be presented to the competent authorities of the second Member State while the EU Blue Card holder is still residing in the territory of the first Member State.
  4. In accordance with the procedures set out in Article 11, the second Member State shall process the application and inform in writing the applicant and the first Member State of its decision to either:
    1. issue an EU Blue Card and allow the applicant to reside on its territory for highly qualified employment where the conditions set in this Article are fulfilled and under the conditions set out in Articles 7 to 14; or
    2. refuse to issue an EU Blue Card and oblige the applicant and his family members, in accordance with the procedures provided for by national law, including removal procedures, to leave its territory where the conditions set out in this Article are not fulfilled. The first Member State shall immediately readmit without formalities the EU Blue Card holder and his family members. This shall also apply if the EU Blue Card issued by the first Member State has expired or has been withdrawn during the examination of the application. Article 13 shall apply after readmission.
  5. If the EU Blue Card issued by the first Member State expires during the procedure, Member States may issue, if required by national law, national temporary residence permits, or equivalent authorisations, allowing the applicant to continue to stay legally on its territory until a decision on the application has been taken by the competent authorities.
  6. The applicant and/or his employer may be held responsible for the costs related to the return and readmission of the EU Blue Card holder and his family members, including costs incurred by public funds, where applicable, pursuant to paragraph 4(b).
  7. In application of this Article, Member States may continue to apply volumes of admission as referred to in Article 6.
  8. From the second time that an EU Blue Card holder, and where applicable, his family members, makes use of the possibility to move to another Member State under the terms of this Chapter, first Member State shall be understood as the Member States from where the person concerned moves and second Member State as the Member State to which he is applying to reside.