If you are interested in working abroad in The Netherlands, there are various permit/visa options available, each of which has its own requirements. The criteria for living and/or working in The Netherlands will depend on such factors as nationality/citizenship, education, occupation, intended length of stay in The Netherlands, and other variables. Citizens of some countries will not need a Dutch visa/permit to live and work in The Netherlands; citizens of other countries will not require a Dutch visa/permit to enter The Netherlands, but they will require a Dutch Residence and Work Permit to live and work in The Netherlands; people from the majority of the world’s countries will need a Dutch visa/permit, such as the Provisional Residence Permit (MVV), to enter The Netherlands, and also require a Dutch Residence and Work Permit (GVVA) to live and work in The Netherlands.

Foreign nationals who are citizens of countries that are members of the European Union (EU) or the European Economic Area (EEA), as well as people who are citizens of Switzerland, and who also have valid passports or other acceptable travel documents, do not need a Dutch visa/permit to live, work or study in The Netherlands, but they may need to follow other procedures, depending on their length of stay or other circumstances. Croatia became the 28th member of the EU on July 1, 2013, but Croatian citizens must follow a somewhat different procedure than citizens from the other EU/EEA countries or Switzerland since Croatia is in a transitional period and has a provisional status on some issues.

If an individual does not hold citizenship from a country in the EU/EEA or Switzerland, but they are an eligible close family member of an EU/EEA or Swiss citizen, they may be able to apply for verification against EU Law to be issued a “certificate of lawful residence” so they may live and work in The Netherlands without needing a Dutch residence and/or work permit.

Foreign nationals who are citizens of certain countries (e.g., Australia, Canada, Japan, Monaco, New Zealand, South Korea, United States, or Vatican City) do not need the Dutch Provisional Residence Permit (MVV) to enter The Netherlands, although a Dutch Residence and Work Permit may be required to live and work in The Netherlands.

Citizens from most of the world’s countries will need to obtain the Dutch Provisional Residence Permit (MVV) to enter The Netherlands, as well as be issued a Dutch Residence and Work Permit (known in Dutch as a gecombineerde vergunning voor verblijf en arbeid or GVVA for short) in order to legally reside and be employed in The Netherlands for more than 90 days. Qualified skilled foreign workers who meet the criteria for certain high-demand categories (such as “highly-educated persons”), can be issued both the MVV and GVVA through the single Entry and Residence Procedure (TEV). The requirements for the TEV and the length of time a foreign national could be allowed to live and/or work in The Netherlands will depend to a large extent on which category they fall under (i.e., their reason for living in The Netherlands). For example, “highly educated” foreign nationals (who usually have at least a Masters Degree and meet other criteria, including obtaining enough points for various factors) can be authorized through the TEV to live in The Netherlands up to 12 months so they can more easily seek Dutch employment there. Once they secure acceptable employment in The Netherlands, they (or usually their employer/sponsor) can then apply for a Dutch Residence and Work Permit (GVVA) that is normally valid for the length of their employment contract up to five years.

Please be aware that this is a brief overview of some of the key requirements for applying for a work visa to The Netherlands and is subject to change at any time by the Dutch government.

NOTE: The work visa application process for The Netherlands is a complicated and time-consuming procedure. Therefore, we do not encourage people to apply for a work visa at this time and are not currently assisting with the procedure, although individuals may choose to do so on their own.