Highly Skilled Migrant

If you wish to hire an employee from outside the EU for a stay for longer than 3 months, the highly skilled migrant procedure is the easiest way to bring over the employee successfully. Both employer and employee need to comply with certain requirements. A highly skilled migrant or knowledge migrant is a migrant who comes to the Netherlands on a labour contract and who meets an income requirement: € 3.170 standard gross amount per month if he/she is younger than 30 years; and €4.324 if he/she is older than 30 years. This income requirement does not apply if the employee comes to the Netherlands to fulfill a function in an educational or research institution.

When a foreign national has been granted residence in the Netherlands as a highly skilled migrant, the employer of the highly skilled migrant is not required to be in possession of a work permit for this foreign national. This makes the process a lot faster and easier. Moreover, the process time of the highly skilled migrant procedure is much faster than the regular procedure.


The IND aims to make a decision in two weeks on the MVV request and take the decision for the residence permit in 2 weeks after arrival. Furthermore, family members of highly skilled migrants can also use the fast procedure to enter the Netherlands and will receive a residence permit allowing them to work without a work permit requirement. Professional soccer players, ministers of religion, teachers of religion, and sex workers are not eligible for a residency as a highly skilled migrant.


Conditions for the employer

The employer must sign a declaration for the admission of highly skilled migrants. This is a non-recurring declaration, which will apply to all applications you make in the future in the context of the highly skilled migrant procedure. In this declaration, the conditions will be further specified. You will also need to submit (among other things) proof of registration in the commercial register and a declaration of a good payment record issued by the Dutch Tax Administration.


The IND must have granted you access to the highly skilled migrant procedure before you can use the forms. Once the IND has received the declaration and everything is in order, you will receive a login name and a password. This will give you access to the application forms in the highly skilled migrant and company module. The application forms will indicate which documents are required for the application.


The combined entry visa

An authorisation for temporary stay does not allow the employee to multiple entries in the Netherlands. Therefore, we advise to apply for a so-called combined visa. The combined visa is generally issued automatically when the employee has a medical insurance valid for the first month of his/her stay, and when there are no safety risks for his/her admission to any of the Schengen countries. In most cases, the issue of an MVV (D visa) is combined with a short stay visa (C visa).


This combination visa is also referred to as the C + D visa. The short stay visa is valid for 90 days from the date of issue, and may be used during that period to travel to and from the Netherlands and to visit other Schengen countries. This combination visa serves to prevent problems that could occur if a foreign national is still waiting for his residence permit. For instance, if the foreign national wants to travel back to his own country for a short visit to arrange matters in connection with his move to the Netherlands, he will be entitled to return to the Netherlands for the duration of the short stay visa.


Voluntary MVV

Foreign workers holding a passport that does not require an MVV to enter the Netherlands can voluntary ask for an MVV as well (USA, Canada, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, and South Korea). The advantage of doing this lies in the residence permit application. When the employer applies for an MVV, the application is reviewed before the arrival of the migrant and when applying for the actual residence permit the migrant will receive a sticker in his/her passport that serves as a residence permit. This will allow the employee to start working immediately after the residence permit application. Furthermore, the BSN (Citizen Service Number) can be issued much faster.



There are fees associated with the application for entry into and residence in the Netherlands. The Dutch embassy or consulate in the country of origin can charge extra costs (for instance fax costs). Check the costs for stay on the IND website


How do you pay the charge for the MVV?

First of all, you should pay any charges for the MVV application by direct debit. To this end, you should send in a signed direct debit form along with your request for advice. The IND will collect the charge the moment you receive a positive advice from the IND on your request for the granting of an MVV. If you do not want to pay for the MVV by direct debit, you will receive an invoice from the IND. If you pay on the basis of an invoice, the IND will only inform the embassy of the positive advice that has been given after the charges for the MVV request have been received.


How do you pay the charge for a residence permit?

By signing the declaration, you as the employer agree to pay any charges by direct debit. This is the fastest way to obtain the residence permit. The charge for the residence permit application will be collected the moment you file your application. If you do not want to pay by direct debit, you or the highly skilled migrant will be sent a giro collection form. It will take a number of weeks before the IND will be notified of this.


Family members

The family members of highly skilled migrants have a special position. The employer can submit an application for these family members as well. Furthermore, family members of highly skilled migrants can also use the fast procedure to enter the Netherlands and will receive a residence permit that allows them to work without a work permit requirement.



  • Only companies established in the Netherlands can use the highly skilled migrant policy.
  • If you do not wish to pay by direct debit, the IND has no obligation to decide on your application within the two-week period.
  • A highly skilled migrant can get a sticker from the IND to prove his/her legal residency in the Netherlands, while awaiting a decision about his/her application for a residence permit. This makes it easier to obtain the BSN and enter the employee into your salary records.
  • Employees who have a residence permit with a work permit requirement and who also meet the requirements for a highly skilled migrant can get a change of status and receive a residence permit as a highly skilled migrant. This makes it a lot easier for their family members to find a job in the Netherlands. Another advantage is that the employer no longer needs to apply for a residence permit for this employee.
  • You can also apply for a highly skilled migrant status for employees from the new EU member state Croatia. If they qualify, you no longer need to be in the possession of a work permit.


For detailed information, check the Residence Wizard on the IND website. Please note that it is important to state the correct reason of stay and that you want to bring someone to the Netherlands!


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