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Benefits & Allowances in the Netherlands: FAQ

Benefits & Allowances in the Netherlands: FAQ

Below you can find answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about the Dutch benefits and allowances:

Fiscal partners and allowances

Your financial situation is the main criterion for whether or not you qualify for government benefits. If you’re single and have no one else registered at your address, it’s simple. Only your own income (and sometimes your savings and investments) will be considered.

If you have a toeslagpartner, or a fiscal partner, you have to take their income into account as well.

Definition of a fiscal partner

A fiscal partner can be your spouse or your registered partner. Even if you are not married or in a registered relationship, you can still have a fiscal partner if someone is registered at your address. This third category includes the following situations:

  • A person you have a formal cohabitation agreement with (samenlevingscontract).
  • A person you have a child with.
  • You jointly own a house which you both live in.

If the person living at your address is subletting from you, that person is not your fiscal partner. If you let someone use your address as a postal address only, that person will not be considered your fiscal partner.

Am I entitled to benefits? How much can I receive?

To find out if you are entitled to benefits, and to learn how much you may be able to receive, it’s necessary to do an individual calculation, as there are too many determining factors to list all payment levels. On this page from the Belastingdienst you can fill in your information to get an indication on how much you will receive.

When & How to apply for Dutch benefits and allowances

Applications for benefits and allowances must be submitted in Dutch on the Mijn Toeslagen (My benefits) webpage using your DigiD. You can apply for the huurtoeslag, zorgtoeslag and kindgebonden budget for a specific year up until September 1 of the following year. So if you want to retroactively apply for 2017 benefits, you have until September 1, 2018. For the kinderopvangtoeslag you must apply within three months of your child starting day care.

If you apply for an extension to do your annual income tax return, then you also receive the same extension on applying for benefits - which usually gains you a couple of extra months.

How long does the application process take?

After applying, the Belastingdienst processes your application and publishes a calculation of your benefit (berekening) on your Mijn Toeslagen account. Within five weeks you will see a payment overview (voorschotbeschikking) on your Mijn Toeslagen account. After another two weeks the same payment overview will be sent to you by post.

Once your payment overview is in your Mijn Toeslagen account, your benefits will be paid into your bank account. Payments are usually made on the 20th of the month.

The total processing period takes roughly eight weeks. If you have not heard from the Belastingdienst within 13 weeks then you can submit a formal notice (formulier ingebrekestelling) which requires them to make a decision within two weeks.

Foreign income / pension and Dutch benefits

If you have an income or pension from abroad this will be taken into consideration when determining your eligibility, so it’s important to declare this to the Dutch tax office.

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