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We put together this Netherlands immigration guide to help you get started planning your own move.

Netherlands immigration status – as a foreign resident

As a non-EU national, you or your company can apply for a Highly Skilled Migrant or Intra Corporate Transferee permit. With either you will not need a separate work permit but you will still need a residence permit. This will allow you to work when you arrive in the Netherlands. The other option is to apply for a (combined residence and) work permit.

Intending to stay long term?

If you plan on living in the Netherlands longer than four months you will need to register as a resident with your local municipality. You will also be registered with a residence card by the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND) within your region. This will be after your residence permit application has been approved.

In most cases, temporary residence permit/entry visa (MVV) needs to be applied together with the application for a residence permit. An MVV is a national entry visa in the form of a sticker in your passport which is issued so that you can travel to the Netherlands to collect your actual residence permit here. Exempted from the MVV-requirement are nationals from the following countries:

  • Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Japan, Monaco, Vatican City, United States of America, or South Korea.
  • An EU/EEA Member State or Switzerland.

You can visit the Immigration and Naturalisation Service website to find out more

What you need to bring to register with the municipality

  • passport
  • residence permit (if required)
  • birth certificate
  • marriage certificate, if applicable
  • fully signed rental/purchase contract or permission to register at your home or office address

Visa requirements

Intending on staying short term and in need of a business or tourist visa? You will need to request this in person at the Dutch embassy or consulate in their home country. You will need to bring your passport and an invitation letter from your employer/sponsor in the Netherlands. This letter should state your name and date of birth, the purpose of your visit, your passport number, a description of the relation between you and the company/sponsor and a guarantee regarding the possible costs of your visit. You will also need to show a return ticket and adequate travel insurance.

The MVV visa is applied for by your employer together with the application for a residence permit. However, after approval of the employer’s application, the foreign national is responsible for requesting and collecting the MVV visa and presenting the necessary documents, as well as giving biometrics at the Dutch Embassy or consulate in their home country.

Relocating with a partner?

Loved one with a non-EU nationality will need their own residence permits as dependents to be able to reside in the Netherlands. Some permits, such as those for partners of Highly Skilled Migrants, allow the partner to work as well without a separate work permit. For some other types of (work) permits this is not the case. One of our advisors will be able to let you know which rules are applicable to your case.

Acceptable forms of identification in the Netherlands

A passport and driver’s license are the main forms of identification. Non-EU nationals who hold a residence permit, will also have receive a residence card from the IND for identification purposes.

And lastly…

Your residence permit will be based on your main residence in the Netherlands, which means that you are only allowed to spend a number of months abroad per year, depending on type of permit. Make sure that you are registered correctly with the municipality where you live. Check whether you are covered for Healthcare insurance for the full duration of your stay. Make sure to renew your permits before they expire.

Not sure which part of the Netherlands is right for you? Visit our destination guides to find out more.


Crown Relocations has made every effort to present accurate information. However, regulations, rates and other variables are subject to change and Crown Relocations cannot accept responsibility for the errors that might result. Should you have any questions or need additional information, please contact your local Crown representative.

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