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Are you a freelancer or self-employed professional in the Netherlands and in need of financial support? For instance because you want to start a business while you are on benefits?
Your municipality can offer you various forms of social benefit options under the Decree on Social Assistance to the Self-Employed (Besluit bijstandverlening zelfstandigen, Bbz). The Bbz offers loans, credits or low income supplements. Also, your municipality can offer you coaching free of charge.
When are you eligible for Bbz?
Different groups of freelancers/self-employed persons are eligible:
- those starting a company, who receive:
- established entrepreneurs who are experiencing temporary financial problems;
- entrepreneurs born before 1960 with a non-viable company (in Dutch);
- entrepreneurs who wish to end their company.
When do you qualify?
Whether you are eligible for financial support as a freelancer/self-employed professional depends on your situation. As does the type of support you require. There are different requirements for each situation. For instance your personal capital determines whether your company capital is a grant or a loan (which you have to pay interest on). It is important to check which requirements apply to your situation. Your local municipality can help you with this.
You can also use the Dutch-language Bbz check to find out if you are eligible. This tool is an initiative of several collaborating government organisations.
Temporary relaxation of conditions
From 1 October 2021 until 1 January 2022 the conditions for applying and receiving Bbz have relaxed. Municipalities will not perform a means test (vermogenstoets) within this period. You can request Bbz retroactively for a maximum of two months. The municipal authority will decide the amount of Bbz you are eligible to receive on a monthly basis, instead of yearly.
How to apply?
You submit your application to your municipality's social services.