The IND checks if the sponsor and foreign national comply with the rules. When the sponsor or foreign national does not comply with the legal obligations, the IND may impose sanctions (disciplinary action). This page explains how the IND proceeds with enforcement and which sanctions the IND may impose.
The IND may, at any time, check whether a (recognised) sponsor or foreign national is complying with the rules. The IND has various ways of doing this:
When the recognised sponsor or foreign national fails to comply with the legal obligations, the IND may impose various sanctions:
The IND issues a warning the first time an obligation is violated. A warning constitutes a written notice in your file with the IND. A warning is valid for 24 months. The warning is removed from your file after this period. A warning is issued to the sponsor or foreign national. The IND may impose an administrative penalty if you are in violation of the same obligation within 24 months. The IND can also proceed with an administrative penalty straightaway if the violation is serious.
The administrative penalty is imposed on the sponsor. However, in a few situations, the administrative penalty is imposed on the foreign national:
The IND can impose an administrative penalty up to 5 years after the violation of a legal obligation.
If a sponsor or foreign national has violated a legal obligation, the IND will draw up a report of the violation. The report will state who committed the violation, the nature of the violation, and which obligation was violated, amongst other things.
The fine report may also include several violations. If the IND ascertains several violations at the same time, the appropriate sanction (disciplinary action) will be determined per case. The IND may:
The IND sends the report to the sponsor or foreign national, stating its intention of imposing an administrative penalty. The sponsor or foreign national is given the chance to respond to the intended decision. For example, because you do not agree with the administrative penalty. However, you are not obliged to provide a statement regarding the violation. Respond within the deadline indicated in the intended decision. The IND will decide whether an administrative penalty will be imposed, within 13 weeks after the fine report was drawn up. If you responded to the intended decision, the decision will state why the penalty amount was changed or why it stayed the same.
You may object to the administrative penalty. The administrative penalty decision will explain how to object and will indicate the period in which you can object. The objection does not have a suspensive effect. This means that you must still pay the penalty within the indicated period. What if the penalty amount changes based on the objection? Naturally, any amounts paid in excess will be refunded.
An administrative penalty must be paid within 6 weeks of the date on which the IND imposed the administrative penalty.
An administrative penalty is imposed per violation. The penalty amounts to a maximum of €3,000, per violation, for legal entities, companies and other organisations, and a maximum of
€1,500, per violation, for natural persons.
There is no ceiling amount for the overall penalty imposed. For example, a sponsor has violated the duty to keep records for 5 foreign nationals and the obligation to provide information for 1 foreign national. The IND may impose an administrative penalty amounting to 6 times the maximum penalty amount.
When determining the penalty amount, the IND will take into account the seriousness of the violation, the extent of the culpability and the circumstances under which the violation was committed.
The seriousness of the violation is the first to be scrutinised. The maximum penalty amount is imposed for a serious violation. These violations are considered serious:
When the violation is less serious, the penalty is lowered to 50% of the maximum penalty amount. These violations are considered less serious:
The IND then assesses the extent of culpability of the violation. This is interconnected with the circumstances under which the violation was committed. The IND will not impose an administrative penalty if the violation cannot be blamed on the sponsor or foreign national.
The IND will lower the penalty amount by (another) 50% for low culpability. In other words, this reduction is calculated on the remaining penalty amount once the seriousness of the violation has also been taken into account. Culpability is low in the following situations:
If the IND encounters the same violation within a period of 24 months, after an administrative penalty has been imposed, it can increase the administrative penalty by 50%.
A natural person committed a less serious violation. Culpability is also low. The IND will impose a fine amounting to €375. This amount is calculated as follows:
The maximum administrative penalty of €1,500, first lowered by 50% because it involves a less serious violation. The remaining amount is €750. This amount is once again lowered by 50%, because of low culpability. The remaining penalty amount is €375.
The IND can suspend the sponsor's recognition when it has good cause to suspect that the recognised sponsor does not (or no longer) meets the conditions for recognition. The IND or another government agency will then investigate the sponsor. The suspension of the recognition is for 3 months, but can be extended by 3 months each time, throughout the on-going investigation. The recognition may be suspended for 1 or more residence purposes.
The recognised sponsor may not make use of its recognition during the suspension period. In other words, during this period you cannot start applications that require recognition as a condition for entry. The sponsor's listing is also immediately removed from the Public Register of Recognised Sponsors.
The IND may withdraw the recognition in one or more of the following cases:
The IND can refuse an organisation to again become a recognised sponsor for a maximum period of 5 years after the recognition has been withdrawn. The recognition can be withdrawn for 1 or more residence purposes. The organisation is removed from the Public Register of Recognised Sponsors. The organisation may not make use of the accelerated procedure during this period, the organisation cannot act as a recognised sponsor and all new applications for recognition will be rejected.
When the recognition is withdrawn, the IND withdraws the residence permits of the foreign nationals who fall under the recognised sponsor's sponsorship. Withdrawal of the foreign national's residence permit will be individually assessed.
Was the foreign national unaware of the reason for the withdrawal? The residence permit will not be withdrawn immediately. The foreign national will have 3 months to look for another (recognised) sponsor. If he or she cannot find one within 3 months, the residence permit may be withdrawn. The foreign national will first receive a letter explaining that the IND intends to withdraw the residence permit (intended decision to withdraw).
Was the foreign national aware of the reason to withdraw the recognition or was he or she involved? In that case, the IND can instantly withdraw the residence permit.
If the foreign national can no longer lawfully reside in the Netherlands, the Dutch Government will check to see if he of she leaves the Netherlands. If he or she does not leave the Netherlands voluntarily, the government may proceed with removal. The IND may recover the related costs from the sponsor. This includes the costs of transport to the airport or the border, the costs of the airline ticket and the costs of a travel document. The IND can recover these costs from the sponsor up to 1 year after the sponsorship period (the period in which you were the foreign national's sponsor) has ended.
If the costs cannot be recovered from the sponsor, the costs will be recovered from the foreign national in question.
Costs for removal no longer to be recovered
In some cases, the costs can no longer be recovered from the sponsor, for example, when: