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How to become a recognised sponsor

This information is provided by:Immigration and Naturalisation Service, INDImmigration and Naturalisation Service, INDNetherlands Enterprise Agency, RVONetherlands Enterprise Agency, RVONederlandse versie

Before you can apply for a residence permit on behalf of a highly skilled migrant or researcher, your organisation needs to be a recognised sponsor. It is also needed if you want to act as an intermediary for an au pair, a cultural exchange, or a student. You must apply to the IND to become a recognised sponsor.

When is a recognised sponsor needed?

Individuals who want to come to the Netherlands and work as a highly skilled migrant or researcher need to contact a recognised sponsor. This is also the case for a young person who wants to work as an au pair, take part in a cultural exchange programme, or study in the Netherlands.

The recognised sponsor acts as the intermediary between these persons and the Dutch government. The recognised sponsor checks if all the conditions for coming to the Netherlands are in order. If necessary, the recognised sponsor files the application for a residence permit.

Apply to become a recognised sponsor

To be recognised as a sponsor, your organisation must be a reliable partner for the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND). To apply, you need to follow an IND procedure. Organisations that have been recognised as a sponsor are listed in a public register. Recognition also has the following advantages:

  • The IND aims to decide on applications from recognised sponsors within 2 weeks.
  • Recognised sponsors need to provide less documentary evidence with an application. In many cases, their own statement for admission is sufficient. In this, they state that the applicant (and their family members, if relevant to the application) meet all the conditions for admission and stay in the Netherlands.
  • They can use the Business Portal to submit digital applications.

Recognition for organisations for au pairs, cultural exchange, and study

You must also apply for recognition as a sponsor in these situations:

  • You run an au pair agency and you want to bring young people to the Netherlands as an au pair.
  • Your exchange organisation wants to bring young people to the Netherlands for a cultural exchange.
  • You have an educational institute and you want to apply for residence permits for students.

General conditions and how to apply

These conditions apply to all organisations that want to become a recognised sponsor:

  • The organisation must be listed in the Business Register of the Netherlands Chamber of Commerce (KVK), unless this is not required under the Business Registers Act 2007.
  • Your organisation's ongoing existence and financial stability must be guaranteed.
  • The organisation may not be insolvent. And there may not be a suspension of payment.
  • The organisation, the managing directors, and other persons involved in the organisation must be reliable.

On the IND website, you can find the all the information you need to apply. This includes all conditions, explanations, and the application form.

After applying, the IND will assess whether your organisation meets the conditions for recognition. If applicable, the IND will check with KVK if the organisation is listed in the Business Register. The judicial information about the managing directors and the organisation will also be checked.

If necessary, the IND will request that you submit a Certificate of Good Conduct (VOG). You can apply for this certificate at the integrity and screening authority Justis. Or if you have a sole proprietorship, you can apply for a VOG from the municipality where you live.

Costs of the procedure

There is a fee for your recognised sponsor application. This must be paid when submitting the application.

Your organisation must pay a fee for each category for which the organisation wants to be recognised.

If the organisation does not pay the fee, the IND will not process the application.

The organisation will not receive a refund if the application is rejected.

Duration of the procedure

If the application for recognition is correctly completed, the procedure will take no longer than 3 months.

Public Register for Recognised Sponsors

If your application to become a recognised sponsor is granted, your organisation will be included in the Public Register for Recognised Sponsors. Anyone can check this register to find out if you are recognised as a sponsor.

File an objection

Is your application to become a recognised sponsor denied? If you do not agree with the decision, you can file an objection.

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