Expat Survival Guide 2021 - The Netherlands

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HIGHLY SKILLED MIGRANT POLICY (KENNISMIGRANTENREGELING) • Employment-based immigration policy for highly skilled migrants. Combined residence-and-work permits are applied for by the employer, who acts as “sponsor”. • Only so called “recognized sponsors” can make use of this policy. IND keeps a public record of all recognized sponsors at: www.ind.nl/en/Pages/public-register-recognisedsponsors.aspx. Highly skilled migrants must be on payroll of recognized sponsor. • The policy all depends on salary. Highly skilled migrant salaries must meet a particular threshold, while also being competitive. The salary thresholds do not apply to medical specialist training, or academic positions. • Net salaries must be paid by bank on a monthly basis. Late or irregular payment of salary may immediately give cause for withdrawal of residence permit. • Sponsors of highly skilled migrants are under a duty of information. They have to report significant changes to the IND within 28 days. • Employees can begin work once they receive their residence permit or “residence endorsement sticker” (verblijfsaantekening) from the IND. Highly skilled migrants may perform self-employed activities on the side, but no side-jobs in employment. Dependent family members have full access to labour market. SEARCH YEAR VISA • Foreign students who have completed higher education can file with IND to remain in the country for a year to look for a job; full and unrestricted access to the labour market. • Permission also applies to those who obtained a degree in the last three years from a university listed in the top 200 of the most recent Times Higher Education World University Rankings, QS World University Rankings, or Academic Ranking of World Universities. • Visa is non-extendable, but if graduate finishes a different study program after expiry of first Search Year Visa, a second Search Year Visa can be issued. START-UP VISA • One-year temporary residence permits enabling applicant to launch an innovative start-up in the Netherlands. • Start-up entrepreneur business idea must be innovative. Innovativeness is broadly defined. • The start-up entrepreneur must have significant savings or another source of income for at least a full year. • The start-up entrepreneur must have a contract with a start-up facilitator having a sound track record. Most major start-up incubators in the Netherlands are accepted. • After one year, permit must be changed into a regular entrepreneur residence permit. This may be done with a statement of good entrepreneurship obtained from start-up facilitator. Facilitators set their own benchmarks for this.


INDEPENDENT PERMITS • A non-EU national who has a residence permit based on a relationship (a Dutch or legally resident partner or parent, for example) can apply for a permit in his or her own right after five years of holding a Dutch permit. • Dependent children can apply for an independent residence permit after one year of legal stay based on a family residence permit. • Specific, but restrictive policies facilitate continued stay of ex-partners in case of domestic violence or the threat of violence. • Continued stay in case of divorce before the five-year term is usually possible if there are children having the Dutch or an EU nationality. PERMANENT RESIDENCE PERMIT • Permanent and unconditional residence permit. After five years of uninterrupted legal stay, this permit can be issued. • Applicant must have the Civic Integration Diploma (Inburgeringsdiploma), even if prior residence was based on work. • Applicant must show having sufficient and durable means of support. • Beware of “residence gaps”, meaning a “gap” between the expiry date of old residence permit and starting date of the new permit. A “residence gap” causes the loss of all accrued time; you basically have to start counting five years from zero. • EU/EEA/Swiss citizens can obtain permanent status after five years too. The rules here are considerably less strict. RESIDENCY COSTS (2020) For all applications the IND charges costs. The exact figures are subject to frequent change. Please refer to www.ind.nl/en/pages/costs.aspx for details. IDENTIFICATION All residents over the age of 14 must carry an ID that shows their residence status (for EU/EEA nationals, a passport).


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