Businesses intending to employ staff will have to deal with various government rules and regulations. We have devised a guide that you may use to determine a company’s obligations. However please note that this is merely a guideline, some other obligations might apply. 




1. Recruitment

Companies are obliged to recruit personnel in the European Economic Area (EEA) and/or Switzerland. Only companies that can prove that they cannot find suitable personnel are permitted to recruit from other countries.


2. Verification and registration of the employees’ identity

Companies must verify the identity of all employees on the basis of an original identity document upon joining the company. A copy of the identity documents must be kept in the companies’ records.


3. Work permit application (if applicable)

Companies seeking to employ someone who is not from the EEA or Switzerland or who comes from Romania or Bulgaria must apply for a work permit from the Public Employment Service. Special rules apply to so-called knowledge workers.


4. Finding accommodation for foreign employees

Companies are obliged to find suitable accommodation for employees coming to the Netherlands to work under a work permit. The relevant rules applicable in the municipality of intended stay are to be respected by the company.


5. Registration as an employer with the Tax Administration

Companies that employ personnel for the first time must register as an employer with the Tax and Customs Administration. The Tax and Customs Administration will then send the necessary forms to meet the applicable payroll tax obligations.


6. Employee tax and social insurance number

Foreign employees who do not have a Dutch citizen service number must provide companies with a tax and social insurance number. They themselves need to apply to the Tax and Customs Administration for such number.


7. Contract of employment

In a contract of employment the employee’s salary is specified. The contract must also indicate whether a Collective Labour Agreement applies and outline working hours and rest times. It also has to contain arrangements in respect to an employee pension scheme.


8. Minimum wage and holiday allowance

Dutch law has a statutory minimum wage and a holiday allowance. This applies to all employees including temporary workers, flexworkers and foreign personnel.



Knowledge workers 

Foreign knowledge workers are exempt of applying for a work permit if one or more of the following conditions apply:

  • The knowledge worker comes from Switzerland or the European Economic Area (EEA) with the exception of Bulgaria and Rumania.
  • The knowledge worker will receive a gross income of more than EUR 50,619 (employees who are 30 or older) or EUR 37,121 (employees younger than 30); the amounts are from 2011.
  • The knowledge worker is a scientist with a grant, a visiting lecturer or a participant in an exchange program of the European Union.
  • The knowledge worker is a university lecturer, doctoral candidate, a post doctoral candidate or doctor training to become a specialist.
  • The knowledge worker studies in the Netherlands or has graduated from a Dutch university or university for applied sciences less than a year ago. The person's starting salary must at least amount to EUR 26,605.