Task Force

The Task Force is a programme set up by the Minister for Migration. The Task Force is helping the IND to process a backlog of asylum applications as quickly as possible. In this way, the IND wishes to make sure that asylum seekers who have been waiting a long time receive a decision as soon as possible. With the help of the Task Force, the IND can also limit the number of penalty payments. On this page you can read more about the Task Force.

Please note: the coronavirus measures that apply since 15 December 2020 do not affect appointments asylum seekers have with the Task Force. All interviews will go ahead.

Last update: 14 January 2020

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Task Force assignment

When the Task Force started, it was tasked with processing a backlog of 15,350 outstanding asylum applications. These are all applications submitted before 1 April 2020. Despite the influence of the coronavirus on its work, the Task Force had decided on 8,200 cases by 31 December 2020. This means that about 7,000 asylum applications still need to be decided on.  

In her letter of 7 January 2021, Minister for Migration, Ankie Broekers-Knol wrote to the Dutch Parliament's House of Representatives. She advised that the Task Force and the IND will continue to do everything possible to decide on the remaining asylum applications by mid-2021 at the latest. However, the Task Force and the IND must continue to take into account unpredictable factors, such as the coronavirus.  

Read the letter to parliament on progress regarding delayed IND cases on the website of the Dutch Parliament's House of Representatives (in Dutch).

Task Force decides on 8,200 applications

At the end of last year it became clear that the Task Force would not be able to decide on all outstanding asylum applications before the end of 2020. However, the Task Force continued to work hard work right up to the end of the year. As a result, a signficant proportion of asylum seekers who are waiting have received clarity regarding their situation. This has been achieved, among other things, thanks to organisational improvements and some innovative measures in the Task Force's work processes. These include the introduction of new ways of holding interviews and also additional collaboration with experienced IND employees.  

Approach of Task Force and IND in 2021

In 2021, it has been decided to combine the results of the Task Force in 2020 with the IND's knowledge and experience.

This is firstly in order to complete the Task Force's assignment by mid-2021 at the latest. Secondly, it is to ensure that asylum applications submitted after 1 April 2020 are also decided on as far as possible within the legal decision period.

In practice, this means that the working methods with which the Task Force has gained experience, will be further developed in 2021. These include different ways of holding interviews (video conferencing and in writing), as well as outsourcing the preparation of a number of decisions to external agencies. 

Read more about the Task Force's approach and the IND in 2021 in the letter to parliament about making progress with delayed IND cases on the website of the House of Representatives (in Dutch).

Letter from Task Force to asylum seekers

In a letter, the Task Force apologised to asylum seekers who had (probably) not received a decision on their asylum application by the end of 2020. The Task Force understands that it is difficult for this group of asylum seekers not to hear this year whether they can stay in the Netherlands. Read the Letter to asylum seekers about the progress of asylum cases in English. Or in one of the following languages:

Task Force staff and locations

The Task Force staff come from different organisations and are employed at several locations (Utrecht, Den Bosch and Zevenaar).

The following staff members are working for the Task Force:

  • 180 IND staff members;
  • 20 staff members from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs;
  • 30 staff members of the Repatriation and Departure Service (DT&V); and
  • 250 temporary staff.
       

Different types of interviews by Task Force

The Task Force is using different types of interviews when processing asylum applications:

  • Physical interview: the asylum seeker has an interview in person at a Task Force location.
  • Video interview: the asylum seeker has an interview via video-conferencing. The asylum seeker stays at their own COA location. Read more about video interviewing (in Dutch)
  • Written interview: the asylum seeker is asked questions in a form. The asylum seeker fills in the form at a Task Force location. This way of interviewing was used for the first time by the Task Force, and happens on a voluntary basis. Read more about written interviewing.

Corona measures taken by Task Force

The Task Force is making every effort to protect the health and safety of asylum seekers and staff. That is why the Task Force is following the coronavirus measures that apply everywhere at the IND. Read which coronavirus measures these are.

Waiting times for Task Force asylum procedure

Unfortunately, the Task Force cannot give more information about when the asylum seekers will have an interview. or when they will receive a decision. This is because the Task Force uses a schedule that depends on many different factors, these include the availability of interpreters and interview rooms, and also health problems of asylum seekers and staff (symptoms similar to the coronavirus). The Task Force will in any event work hard to process all applications by or before mid-2021.

Applied earlier for asylum but decided on later

At the start of the project, the Task Force had to decide on a total of 15,350 outstanding asylum applications submitted before 1 April 2020. In many of these cases, the legal decision period had passed or there was a risk that no decision would be made in time. The legal decision period is the time that the IND legally has to to decide on an asylum application (maximum 6 months).

When the Task Force began, it was agreed that the IND (not the Task Force) would decide on all applications from after 1 April 2020. The IND and the Task Force each work with their own schedule. Therefore, someone who applies for asylum later could receive a decision sooner.

Read more about the handling of asylum applications in different languages.

Transport to and from the Task Force

The IND provides for transport to and from the Task Force. For this purpose the IND hires coaches, minibuses and taxis. Scheduled bus services are not used.

The minibus or taxi goes to the COA location where the asylum seekers are staying. The driver reports to the reception desk. Sometimes there is an agreed place at the COA location where the asylum seekers are waiting. The security guard at the COA location lets the driver know.

All asylum seekers who travel to a Task Force location return to the COA location the same day. The departure times for the return trip are:

  • Den Bosch: 18:00.
  • Utrecht: between 16:30  and 17:00.
  • Zevenaar: 13:00 18:00.

These times are subject to change. If it is important for the process, these times can be different.

You can also read the frequently asked questions about this subject.

Frequently asked questions about Task Force

On this page you can read the answers to frequently asked questions about the Task Force.

Do you have questions?

Then you can contact the Task Force in several ways:

    • Do you have a specific question about an asylum application? Then call the Task Force information line  on 088-04 36 888 (available on working days from 9:00 - 12:00 and 13:00 -17:00). Or send an e-mail to info.Task Force@ind.nl. NB: information line staff will only answer questions about asylum applications submitted before 1 April 2020.
    • Do you have a question about written interviews? Then please send an e-mail to: schriftelijkeprocedure@ind.nl.
    • Are you a lawyer and would you like to schedule an interpreter in a different language for your client? Then please send an e-mail to tolken.planning@ind.nl.
    • Are you an interpreter and do you have a question about your interpreting service or about your invoice? Then please send an e-mail to tolken.planning@ind.nl.
    • Do you have a question about the transport of asylum seekers to and from the Task Force in Utrecht and Zevenaar? Then please send an e-mail to vervoer.utrecht.Task Force@ind.nl.
    • Do you have a question about the transport of asylum seekers to and from the Task Force in Den Bosch or the FMMU? Then please send an e-mail to vervoer.taskforce@ind.nl.