Dutch law in 2021: Here's what's changing from January 1

Dutch law in 2021: Here's what's changing from January 1

New year, new laws. There's lots changing in 2021 - here's everything you need to know about Dutch law in  2021, and how it will affect you as an expat. 

Tax in 2021

Fears of a recession brought on by the ongoing coronavirus crisis mean that there are significant changes to the Dutch tax system in 2021. To give a general overview, the lowest bracket for corporation tax will be reduced from 16,5 percent to 15 percent, and the threshold for this bracket will be changed to allow more SMEs to be eligible. The Dutch government has also announced a new investment tax credit from 2021, which will mean businesses that make an investment i.e. the purchase of new technology, will receive a tax credit. 

The tax on small investors and savers will also be reduced: no tax will be charged on assets up to 50.000 euros, and anyone with assets up to 220.000 per person will be charged less tax. The tax rates for entrepreneurs and self-employed people will also be reduced to be made fairer.

Housing and mortgages

The government has introduced a number of measures for 2021 in an attempt to make it easier for first-time buyers to enter the housing market. If you're looking to buy property and you're between the ages of 18 and 35, you will no longer be expected to pay transfer tax, while the tax rate for investors will rise from 2 percent to 8 percent. Changes have also been made to the rules for applying for a mortgage (student debt will play less of a role in determining how much you can borrow, and couples can apply for a higher mortgage).

Family and children

The Dutch government is introducing a new alcohol law which will mean that anyone who buys alcoholic drinks for underage people will risk a fine. The law was supposed to come into effect in January, but has been pushed back and will come into effect on July 1, 2021. The value of the fine is yet to be determined, but the law will mean that parents who buy alcohol for their children could be fined. The law will also introduce stricter regulations and age checks when purchasing alcohol online. 

The child benefit will increase in 2021, as will the child-related budget. Furthermore, as of January 1, the maximum hourly rates for daycare, out-of-school care, and childminder care will increase. The maximum hourly rate is the amount up to which a parent can be reimbursed for the costs of childcare.

Daycare 8,46 euros
Out-of-school care 7,27 euros
Childminder care 6,49 euros

Employment and income

The tax rate on incomes up to 68.507 euros will be reduced from 37,35 percent to 37,10 percent in 2021 (and will be further reduced to 37,03 percent by 2024). Other changes to the tax system mean that, on the whole, salaried workers will see their net income increase slightly in 2021.

The national minimum wage will be higher next year. The (gross) minimum wage in euros from January is:

Age Month Week Day
21 + 1.684,80 388,80 77,76
20 1.347,85 311,05 62,21
18 842,40 194,40 38,88
16 581,25 134,15 36,83

Climate and the environment

A new tax will come into effect from January 1 which will make all airline tickets slightly more expensive. Looking to fly from a Dutch airport in 2021? You can expect to pay an additional 7,45 euros for the new passenger tax - read more about it here. 2021 will also see the introduction of the CO2 tax for big industry - companies that emit more than a certain amount of CO2 will be taxed.

In an attempt to reduce plastic waste and littering, the government has introduced a new deposit for small plastic bottles that will come into effect on July 1, 2021. A deposit of 15 cents will be charged on all small bottles (less than one litre). To collect your deposit, you will be able to return small bottles as well as large bottles at supermarkets, as well as at train stations and petrol stations. A similar scheme is also expected to be introduced in the new year for cans.


In 2021, pregnant women will be able to book a 13-week ultrasound scan in addition to the 20-week scan that is already available. The HPV vaccine will also be made available for boys in the new year, and the age for the first call to be vaccinated will be reduced from 13 / 14 years to 9 / 10 years.

Cigarettes and other tobacco products will become more expensive next year due to an increase in tobacco tax The a packet of 20 cigarettes will cost 12 cents more from January 1.

Crime, justice, and security

From January 1, 10 municipalities across the Netherlands will trial the use of batons (or truncheons). In these municipalities, Community Service Officers (BOAs) will receive special training and be armed with batons for a trial period of one year. The municipalities taking part in the trial are: Amsterdam, Alkmaar, Capelle aan den Ijssel, Hoorn, Leeuwarden, Valkenburg aan de Geul, Velsen, Zandvoort, Zoetermeer, and Zuid West Friesland.  

Victoria Séveno


Victoria Séveno

Victoria grew up in Amsterdam, before moving to the UK to study English and Related Literature at the University of York and completing her NCTJ course at the Press Association...

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