The Netherlands Citizenship Program: How to Apply for Netherlands Citizenship

The Netherlands Citizenship Program allows foreign nationals to apply for Dutch citizenship and provides many great benefits such as voting rights, the right to hold public office, and the ability to live and work in the European Union. To learn more about how to apply for Netherlands citizenship or to see if you qualify, keep reading!

The Netherlands Citizenship Program: How to Apply for Netherlands Citizenship

The Netherlands Citizenship Program is for anyone who’s interested in becoming a Dutch citizen and moving to The Netherlands from abroad or from within the country itself. It’s not an easy process, but if you’re serious about settling down in the land of tulips and cheese, this guide will walk you through everything you need to know about applying for Netherlands citizenship with as little hassle as possible and getting your new Dutch passport in record time!

The Netherlands Citizenship Program is one of the most extensive and thorough citizenship programs in the world, with over 200 steps involved. If you’re considering applying, you’ll want to be sure to go through each step thoroughly to ensure that your application doesn’t get lost along the way. This guide will tell you what to expect from the entire program, as well as provide tips on how to make your application as successful as possible.

About Netherlands Citizenship Program

The Netherlands citizenship program allows individuals from all over the world who have resided in the country for five years or more, to apply for Dutch citizenship. For some individuals, The Netherlands’ citizenship program is a good way of ensuring that they are able to remain in their adopted home, even after their resident permit expires. Moreover, the process of applying for and receiving Dutch citizenship is relatively simple and straightforward.

To find out if you meet the requirements needed to become a citizen of The Netherlands and how best to go about applying, visit our guide. You will also be able to find out if you need additional documents from local councils or other parties before your application can be processed by The Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND).

Check your eligibility

Before you start the application process, make sure you’re eligible. The requirements can vary depending on whether you live in the Netherlands or outside of it. If you live in the country, you must meet these requirements: You must be 18 years old (or older if married); You must have legal and permanent residency status; Your residence permit has been valid for at least five years, And your income has been sufficient over those five years.

If you live outside of the country, there are slightly different guidelines. Again, they vary depending on whether or not you have connections to The Netherlands through family members or heritage. Some examples of when people are considered connected include spouses and minor children who have a Dutch passport as well as parents with a registered address in the country.

Start preparing early

The process can take a long time, especially if you’re applying for Dutch citizenship because of family ties. The first step is to submit your application, along with copies of all the documents listed in the brochure. If you decide to apply through employment or residence, the process varies slightly but still takes quite a while.

After submitting your application, there will be an interview at which you’ll need to prove your identity and knowledge of Dutch society. You’ll then have to wait several months while immigration officials check that all your information is correct. Once they confirm it, you’ll have another interview and an appointment with a judge who will decide whether or not you deserve citizenship.

Decide where you want to apply

The first thing you should do is determine where you want to apply. The process can vary by location, so be sure to check the Dutch immigration authority’s website (Netherlands Embassy in Washington) or call the consulate and ask if there are any specific requirements unique to your location that you need to know about.

You’ll also need a valid passport with at least six months remaining before it expires. Make sure that your passport is valid for at least four months after your intended departure date, as well! You should also have an official identification document such as a driver's license or state-issued ID card.

Prepare all required documents

What documents are required depends on the reason you’re applying. As a rule of thumb, the more complicated your situation, the more paperwork you’ll need. The good news is that you don’t have to do everything all at once. For instance, if your residency permit will expire in a few months but you don’t have time or money to submit an application, there may be an interim solution available for a fee (like renewing your permit). You can also start gathering documents before even deciding whether or not you want citizenship. What type of resident are you? That affects what documents are required and how much they cost.

Understanding Netherlands Permanent Residence

Permanent residence is a person's legal resident status in a country or territory of which such person is not a citizen but where they have the right to reside on a permanent basis. This is usually for a permanent period, a person with such legal status is known as a permanent resident.

However, once you have received a Netherlands permanent residence status your stay in the country no longer depends on a certain purpose of stay which is the type of visa you have. Besides, your permanent residence can only be revoked if you leave the Netherlands permanently, commit a serious crime, or fail to comply with residency or imposed obligations. You can also work in the country legally without applying for a separate work permit. You just need to renew or request a new card every 5 years.

Moreover, having a Netherlands permanent residence status does not mean you are a Dutch citizen. Besides, Dutch citizenship is the next step after permanent residency. You can then apply for a Dutch passport, after becoming a citizen of the Netherlands. Although, you may have to renounce other nationalities you have in most cases. But you can still keep your original nationality when you apply for Netherlands permanent residence.

Advantages of obtaining a Netherlands Permanent Residence

There are benefits that are attached to this residency, and here they are:

1. Indefinite Residence in the Netherlands:

An individual can stay in the Netherlands like forever or a lifetime depending on the duration the person wants to stay there. Many people have used this as an avenue in making explore foreign countries where they reside.

2. Freedom in the Labour Market:

This permanent residency allows a foreigner to be employed by any employer in the Netherlands. If there are any job opportunities that come up during the foreigner's stay, this makes him or her eligible to take part in it.

Types of Netherlands Permanent Residence

Furthermore, you can apply for permanent residency after staying in the Netherlands legally for uninterrupted 5 years. However, there are two types of permanent residency:

  • Long-term residency, based on EU law
  • A permanent residence permit, based on Dutch national law

Moreover, the Immigration and Naturalization Service (IND) typically determines the residency permits you qualify for.

Long-term residency

A residence permit long-term resident EU entitles you to live in the Netherlands for an indefinite period. That means you can continue to live in the Netherlands for as long as you like.

Moreover, having a residence permit as a long-term EU resident allows you to apply more easily for a long-term residence permit in other EU countries, although the conditions for the residence permit may differ from one country to another.

However, conditions for long-term residence EU are as follows:

  • You have lived in the Netherlands with a valid Dutch residence permit for at least 5 consecutive years immediately before the application.
  • During the 5-year period, you were not outside the Netherlands for 6 or more consecutive months or 10 or more months in total.
  • You have a residence permit with a non-temporary purpose when you apply.
  • You have an independent, sufficient, and sustainable income.
  • Also, you passed the civic integration exam process. This means you can read, write, speak and understand Dutch at a sufficient level.

Permanent residence based on Dutch law

Moreover, you may qualify for a Dutch national permanent residence permit if you do not meet the conditions or requirements for the long-term residence permit based on EU law.

However, the conditions for the permanent residence permit are as follows:

  • You must have been living in the Netherlands for 5 years or more with a valid temporary residence permit
  • You have a residence permit with a non-temporary purpose when you apply.
  • Also, you passed the civic integration exam process.
  • You have an independent, sufficient, and sustainable income.

What Do You Need To Do During Any Online Application

There are guides you need to follow in order to Achieve a Maximum Result from every online Form Like Visa Sponsorship Scholarship Programs or internships or Jobs you Apply for and the below list will put you through:

  • Maintain Single Profile – Don’t make things hard for yourself by making your registration with multiple profiles which will have problems while trying to Verify or claim your Award
  • Instructions – It's true that people don’t read instructions and it will be very bad of you not to read instructions before Applying for any online Application.
  • Legal and Correct details –  If you are not sure of the details you are using please kindly verify before Adding them to your Application because once the Application is again Approval you can’t claim the Award
  • Enquirer –  Do ask questions on some unclear part of your registration before you proceed with it.
  • Subscribers – Make it a point of Duty to Join the email subscribers in order to get daily updates about your Application
  • Follow up – make it a point of duty to follow up on your application from start to finish in order to gain Approval
  • Validation – Make your registration and with valid documents to enable easy approval
  • Recommendation –  Make use of the document under recommendation from the Application form both format and size.

How to Apply for a Netherlands Permanent Residence

Any candidate who needs this must fill in an application form online and submit it back. In order to make it more concrete, one has to attach documents as evidence.

However, the Netherlands permanent residence application procedure and requirements differ for EU/EEA/Swiss and non-EU/EEA/Swiss citizens and family members. Therefore, we will be explaining the application process and requirements separately for easy and clear understanding. In addition, we will also be providing application fees and processing time for each of the categories,

1. EU/EEA or Swiss Citizens

However, if you are an EU/EEA or Swiss citizen and you have been living continuously in the Netherlands for at least five years. Then you can apply for a permanent residence permit for nationals of the EU and their family members.

Moreover, this also applies to family members who are non-EU/EEA/Swiss citizens. This includes people such as spouses, dependent children, or relatives of EU/EEA/Swiss citizens. This applies regardless of their own nationality.

If you are applying for a Netherlands permanent residence as an EU/EEA or Swiss citizen. Then, you must complete an online application form and submit it to the IND with a valid passport and other supporting documents. However, you can access the application form by clicking here.

Required documents

However, you will need to provide proof of your personal information and circumstances. Such as:

  • Proof that you have been living in the Netherlands for the past five years. You may provide your employment contract, health insurance policy, etc. However, the five-year term may become shorter if you have worked and retired in the Netherlands, become unfit for work, or are a cross-border worker.
  • You will also need to provide the residence permit that granted you permission to stay in the Netherlands on the basis of a relationship. That is if you are a family member of an EU/EEA or Swiss citizen.
  • You will need to provide evidence that you were working for at least one year before retirement, in case you are retired.
  • In case you are a cross-border worker, you will have to provide evidence that you stayed and worked in the Netherlands for three years before getting a job in another EU state. Evidence that you still have your home in the Netherlands, and that you return at least once a week.

Fees and processing time

Moreover, you must also pay a non-refundable fee for the IND to process your application. The fee is currently € 64, as of January 2021. For the processing time, the IND generally makes a decision on the applications within eight weeks. But the processing time usually takes a maximum of six months for non-EU/EEA/Swiss individuals and family members.

2. Non-EU/EEA or Swiss Citizens

If you are a non-EU/EEA/Swiss citizen applying for a permanent residence, the IND will first check if you meet the European requirement. If you do, you will receive a permanent residence as an EC long-term resident, which is the Long-term residency. You will be able to move to other EU member states, with this permanent residence status.

However, if you do not meet the European requirements, the IND will assess your application based on national legislation. When you meet the conditions, you’ll receive a permanent residence permit in accordance with Dutch national law (a long-term Dutch residence permit).  Then, if you fail to meet neither of the requirements, the IND will assess whether you can extend your current temporary residence permit.

General Requirements

However, you must fulfill the following requirements to be eligible to apply for the Netherlands permanent residence as a non-EU/EEA/Swiss national. They include:

  • Have held a temporary residence permit for a minimum of five consecutive years in the Netherlands.
  • Also, you should currently hold a residence permit for a non-temporary purpose, such as employment. Which must be with a minimum of a one-year contract.
  • You must prove to have an independent, sufficient, and sustainable long-term income.
  • You do not pose a threat to public order or national security.
  • Also, you passed the civic integration exam process. This means you can read, write, speak and understand Dutch at a sufficient level.

Application Procedure

To apply for the Netherlands permanent residence as a non-EU/EEA/Swiss citizen, you must complete an application form and submit it to the IND with a passport/ ID card and supporting documents.


However, you will have to submit the following documents to provide proof of your personal information and circumstances. They are as follows:

  • A copy of a valid passport or any other official travel document
  • Proof of sufficient funds, for example, bank statements, etc.
  • A civic integration diploma or comparable diploma

Fees and processing time

Moreover, you will also have to pay a non-refundable fee for the IND to process your application. The fee is currently ​€ 192, as of January 2021. Then for the processing time, the IND states a maximum period of six months to process your application.

Furthermore, once your application has been processed by the IND, you will receive a letter with their decision. If the decision turns out to be positive and you get the Netherlands permanent residence. You can collect the document about two weeks later at a regional IND desk.


The Netherlands is one of the most popular destinations in Europe for immigrants. Not only are they proud of their unique culture and history, but they also have a dynamic economy that has been attracting ex-pats who want to build a better life. Although the Dutch nationality law is relatively simple and straightforward, there are many specific requirements that you need to fulfill before becoming a citizen.

The application process for Dutch citizenship is lengthy and complex. But the end result is worth it: you can live in one of the most beautiful countries in the world and enjoy its many benefits, such as its first-rate healthcare system, advanced social services, high-quality public education, low crime rate, and friendly culture. The following information will help you determine if the Netherlands citizenship program is right for you.