What visa and permit do I need: A guide for working in the Netherlands

What visa and permit do I need: A guide for working in the Netherlands

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Payingit International provides a wide range of services for expats, including payroll management, visas, permits, IND sponsorship, and tax arrangements.

The Netherlands is always looking for talented professionals! If you want to work in the Netherlands, there are certain permits you have to have, but which ones do you need? And how do you apply for them? Follow the questions below and you will have your answer!

Can you answer “yes” to the following questions?

First of all, you have to be able to answer the following questions with a “yes”:

1. Do you have an employment contract with an employer or research institution in the Netherlands that is a recognised sponsor at the IND? 

If you have to answer “no” to this question, working in the Netherlands may still be possible for you with the help of a payroll service.

2. Do you meet the income requirements for highly skilled knowledge migrants?

This means: If you are 30 years or older, you will need to earn at least 4.612 euros gross per month or if you are younger than 30 years, you will need to earn at least 3.381 euros gross per month.

These conditions are mandatory for everyone.

What visa or permit do you need?

Now, the part where all the visa and permit information comes in:

1. How long will you be staying in the Netherlands?

So, how long will you be staying in the Netherlands:

a. Less than three months?

You need to apply for a short-stay visa. This is perfect if you are just visiting the Netherlands for business. You can apply at the Dutch embassy in your own country. If you are a resident from outside the EU, the EEA and Switzerland go to part 2.a. 

EEA citizens don’t need a visa to stay in the Netherlands for less than 3 months.

b. Longer than three months?

You will have to apply for a long-stay visa. This is called a residence permit, which we call the MVV (in Dutch, it stands for machtiging tot voorlopig verblijf). Even though you are staying in the Netherlands for longer, you still have to put down your reason for being in the Netherlands when you apply for this permit. If you are staying longer than three months go to part 2.b.

c. I don’t know yet, I just graduated.

You can apply for a “zoekjaar” visa or “orientation year” within three years of graduating. Before you apply, you must have a diploma or a declaration from your university (Dutch university or in the top 200 of the world) that you have fulfilled all the requirements for earning your degree. Your diploma and a valid passport are the only things the Dutch immigration service (IND) requires of you to apply for the orientation year status.

2. What will you need?

What permit or visa will you need? 

a. If you are a resident from outside the EU, the EEA and Switzerland staying less than three months, you need to get a TVW.

This is a regular work permit. You don’t need a residence permit, but you do need this work permit. Please note that only your employer can apply for one. You as an employee can’t. 

b. If you are staying longer than three months, you will have to have a work permit and a residence permit.

You can get a combined one that is referred to as the GVVA. The website of the Dutch government states: ‘‘The GVVA is a residence permit with an additional document stating for which employer they are permitted to work and under which conditions.’’ Note that there are exceptions for certain groups of researchers, highly skilled migrants, and trainees.

Also, since October 1, 2020, family members of foreign self-employed professionals no longer need a work permit.

EU Blue card

In addition to the Dutch highly skilled migrant scheme, there is a European scheme for highly skilled migrants: the EU Blue Card. To be eligible for an EU Blue Card, highly skilled migrants must:

  • Earn the minimum of 5.160 euros gross per month
  • Have a diploma at Bachelor level which is recognised by the International Credential Evaluation (IDW) service.

If you think after reading this: Oh my, I still don’t know where to start?! Payingit International is happy to help you with any questions you may have about your visa application, the 30% tax ruling or the (maybe lack of) IND sponsorship of your employer.



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