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Dutch spouse or common law partner

Joshua Pex
Joshua Pex

Do you have a Dutch spouse and you want to live in Holland for an extended period of time? Do you want to apply for Dutch nationality as the life partner of a Dutch resident? You may feel overwhelmed and confused by the available information and you may have no idea where to start.

Our law office helps with immigration, relocation and visas to Holland. In this article, attorney Joshua Pex will explain the necessary information and procedures you will have to follow.

Spouse or partner

Dutch spouse or common law partnerThis article is relevant for you if your spouse or partner has the Dutch nationality or holds permanent residence in Holland. Partners of Dutch residents can apply for residency if they have a long-term and exclusive relationship together. Your relationship is regarded as long-term and exclusive when you are both 21 years or older; you must both declare that you have an exclusive relationship with each other and intend to live together and run a joint household upon moving to the Netherlands.

Dutch residence permit

If you have Israeli citizenship only and plan to stay with your spouse or partner in the Netherlands for longer than 90 days, you will need to apply for a residence permit. You will also need a special visa in order to enter the Netherlands (abbreviated as MMV in Dutch), which you request simultaneously with the residence permit. Citizens of countries in the European Union or the European Economic Area are exempt of the procedure outlines below, given their special relationship with the Netherlands. Refer to the following website for a full list of these countries:

Criteria for acquiring Dutch residency:

As spouse or partner of a Dutch resident, you are eligible to apply for Dutch residency if you and your spouse or partner meet the following criteria:

  • You are both 21 years or older
  • You are going to live together in the Netherlands
  • Your spouse or partner declares their willingness to sponsor you
  • Your spouse or partner has independent sufficient and sustainable income. In other words, a source of independent income for which taxes and social security contributions are paid. The income needs to at least equal the Dutch statutory minimum wage (sufficient income), and the contract employment contract has to be valid for another 12 months (sustainable income). If your Dutch spouse or partner receives unemployment benefits, benefits for long-term illness or any other public funds, or if your partner has a flexible contract, the condition of independent and sufficient income will be reviewed for your personal situation. If your Dutch spouse or partner is self-employed, they must have earned this income for at least 1.5 years and prove that they will receive this income for another 12 months
  • You have passed the basic civic integration examination abroad, in your country. You are required to demonstrate some understanding of Dutch language (written and spoken) and society. There are numerous exceptions to this requirement, such as; if you are retired; if you have lived in the Netherlands for eight years during compulsory school age; if you have nationality of another country in the European Union, the European Economic Area, Turkey or Suriname; if you have a diploma, certificate or any other document to proof that you’ve attended a Dutch-speaking educational facility.

Dutch nationality

After living in Holland for over five years under a residency permit, you may apply for Dutch nationality at your local municipality. You are only eligible to apply if you are; 18 years or older, stayed in the Netherlands for five consecutive years, have no criminal records, and passed the intermediary civic integration exam (testing knowledge of Dutch society and your skills in speaking, reading, listening and writing in Dutch) or have a NT2 certificate affirming your Dutch language skills. Do note however, that policy in Holland requires you to give up your own citizenship in order to receive Dutch citizenship if you are not Dutch by birth.

How is the application for Dutch Nationality Submitted?

The Immigration and Naturalization Service (IND) at Ministry of Justice and Security will process your application. You may start your application when you and your Dutch spouse or partner are still outside the Netherlands, with the Civic Integration Examination being the first step. It is recommended to start preparation for your application in advance, since there are a number of official documents you will need to receive from the authorities of the country you are a resident of, and these documents may need translation into Dutch.

Once the application is granted

With a residence permit as spouse or partner of someone with a Dutch nationality, you may live, work and study in the Netherlands, provided that you live together with your Dutch spouse or partner, as you declared while applying for the permit. You will be obliged to purchase a Dutch insurance and you will have to continue the civic integration procedure, with the Civic Integration Exam as a final test.

Contact us for help and further info

Are you interested in applying for a residence permit in the Netherlands so you can live there with your Dutch spouse or partner for an extended period of time? The application procedure for residence permit is a lengthy one, requiring a lot of effort. We are here to guide you through the whole process, from the start of your application and until you receive your residence permit. Advocate Joshua Pex or the other advocates in the firm are ready to provide the professional assistance you need.

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