Working in the Netherlands for non-Dutch students

Working in the Netherlands for non-Dutch students

As a non-Dutch student, you can work in the Netherlands alongside your studies. There are a number of rules that you have to take into accounts such as

  • health insurance,
  • a work permit,
  • income tax, and
  • social security contributions.

Check if you need a work permit:

If you need a work permit to work in the Netherlands depends on your citizenship.

No work permit required:

  • Citizens of the EU,
  • Liechtenstein,
  • Norway,
  • Iceland, and
  • Switzerland.

Work permit required:

  • Citizens of all other countries

Apply for a work permit by your employer:

Your (future) employer must apply for a work permit for you at the UWV (Employee Insurance Agency). He must then send your residence permit and proof that you are registered as a student. This takes around five weeks.

Restrictions when working with a work permit in the Netherlands:

Do you want to work alongside your studies, and do you need a work permit? Then you can select from one of the options below. Both are not allowed.

  • You do seasonal work during June, July, and August
  • You work all year, part-time but never more than 10 hours a week

These restrictions do not apply to residents of the European Union, Liechtenstein, Norway, Iceland, and Switzerland. They are allowed to work full time, just like Dutch students.

Basic insurance or private insurance for medical expenses?

International students must have independent health insurance. Everybody aged 18 and over who lives or works in the Netherlands must have health insurance.

Read more about student health insurance

Income tax and social security:

You have to pay taxes on the total of your income. If you receive a grant, it may be that it is added to your salary. In the Netherlands, you must file a tax return once a year.

Do you want to know more about your income tax?

  • Go to the personnel department of your employer,
  • or call the Dutch Tax Authorities on 0800 0543.

A social security contribution will be deducted from your gross salary. Your employer is obliged to do this. This means you are insured against the consequences if you get an accident while working.

Working outside the law (‘undeclared work’)

Some students have a part-time job where no taxes or social contributions are paid. This is called undeclared work. This seems unusual because you earn more. But undeclared work is illegal. You have no rights as an employee and are not insured if something happens to you during work. Working without a work permit if you do need one is also prohibited. The employer risks a heavy fine or even imprisonment.

You may also want to read:

Study and Work in Australia

Study and Work in Norway

How to work in Canada as an international student

Work and study in Malta: learn how to do this legally