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Work permit (TWV)

This information is provided by

Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO | Immigration and Naturalisation Service, IND

Are you planning to hire an employee from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland? You will need a work permit (tewerkstellingsvergunning, TWV) or a combined residence and work permit (gecombineerde vergunning voor verblijf en arbeid, GVVA).

Employees from within the EEA and Switzerland

EEA and Swiss residents do not need a work permit to work in the Netherlands. They do need a valid passport or identity document.

Employees from outside the EEA and Switzerland

If you own a company in the Netherlands and you want to hire foreign workers from outside the EU, the EEA and Switzerland, generally they need either a work permit, or TWV (in Dutch) or a combined work and residence permit, GVVA. This depends on the duration of the employment and the type of employment. You must first do everything within your power to hire someone from within the EU, the EEA or Switzerland and the vacancy should be reported to the Employee Insurance Agency (Uitvoeringsinstituut Werknemersverzekeringen,UWV) first.

Please note: from 1 April 2022 refugees from Ukraine can work in the Netherlands without a work permit under the Temporary Protection Directive. You must notify UWV 2 days in advance (in Dutch).

Less than 90 days

If you want to employ the foreign worker for less than 3 months, they will probably need a work permit (in Dutch). You can apply for this work permit for the Netherlands to the Employee Insurance Agency (UWV, in Dutch). It is valid for a maximum of 1 year, after which you can apply for a renewal. If you hire someone through an intermediary or you outsource work to another company, then these third parties can apply for the work permit.

More than 90 days

If you want to employ a foreign worker for 3 months or more, you will generally have to apply for a combined residence and work permit (GVVA), the so-called single permit. The GVVA is a residence permit with an additional document stating for which employer they are permitted to work and under which conditions. They therefore do not need a separate work permit. You can apply for the single permit or the worker can apply for the single permit to the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (Immigratie- en Naturalisatiedienst, IND).

If the employee will be staying in the Netherlands for more than 90 days, you will also need to apply for a provisional residence permit (mvv). This is a special type of visa with which the employee can enter the Netherlands. Not all nationalities need an mvv. If your employee already has a residence permit from a Schengen country, you do not have to apply for an mvv.

To find out whether your employee needs a permit, you can use an infographic (in Dutch) or check with the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND).

Payment

You must pay a foreign employee's wages monthly via a bank account.

Accelerated procedure

Accelerated procedures apply to:

  • some categories of employees, such as senior management, specialists and employees of your foreign branch who come to the Netherlands to learn additional techniques (apprentices)
  • top artists. If you are an employer active in dramatics, theatre, opera, musicals, classical music or dance, you can obtain a work permit for them. The artist's salary determines whether they belong to the top.

No permit required

You do not need a work permit in the Netherlands for certain groups of researchers, highly skilled migrants and trainees. Also, since 1 October 2020, family members of foreign self-employed professionals no longer need a work permit.

Temporary cross-border services by foreign companies

If your company is based outside of the Netherlands, but within the EU, the EEA or Switzerland, and it performs an assignment in the Netherlands with employees that come from countries outside the EU, the EEA, or Switzerland, these employees do not need a work permit TWV or single permit GVVA if:

  • they are allowed to work in your company's country;
  • you notify the service provider online prior to the start of the assignment;
  • and your company's service does not comprise the provision of employees (as intermediairy, secondment or subcontracting).

Change in permit

If there is a change in your situation or the purpose of your stay in the Netherlands, you may need to apply for a different permit. You are only entitled to a specific work and/or residence permit if you fulfil the requirements for that permit. If your situation changes, you will need to contact the Immigration and Naturalisation Service to apply for a different permit.

Work permit and residency rights of British citizens after Brexit

Depending on the date of your arrival in the Netherlands, you may or may not need a work permit. If you are a British citizen or you employ British citizens, find out how British residency rights have changed. For the latest information, check the Immigration and Naturalisation Service Brexit page, the website of the Government of the Netherlands or UWV's Brexit information.

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This information is provided by

Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO
Immigration and Naturalisation Service, IND
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