End of Brexit transition period

​On 31 January 2020, the United Kingdom (UK) left the European Union (EU). UK nationals already living in the Netherlands before 31 December 2020 fall under the Withdrawal Agreement and will be allowed to stay in the Netherlands after the transitional period. However, you will need to apply to the IND for a Brexit residence document before 1 July 2021. UK nationals who wish to come to the Netherlands for the first time from 1 January 2021 do not fall under the Withdrawal Agreement. They must apply for a regular residence permit if they would like to live in the Netherlands.

​Regular policy on foreign nationals with effect from 1 January 2021

For the first time after the transitional period, UK nationals coming to the Netherlands are covered by foreign nationals' standard policy. As a result of Brexit, they no longer are EU citizens but 'third-country nationals'. You are a third-country national if you do not have EU, EEA, or Swiss nationality. Third-country nationals wishing to live in the Netherlands must apply for a regular residence permit. The latter not being the same document as the Brexit residence document. Third-country nationals are subject to different and often more strict rules than EU citizens.

However, the UK nationals are exempt from the visa requirement if they wish to visit the Netherlands and from the obligation to apply for a residence permit from abroad. In concrete terms, this means that they are treated in the same way as Americans or Japanese concerning their residence right. UK nationals coming to the Netherlands for the first time after the transitional period to live, work or study here can find more information on this website under their specific residence purpose (study, work, exchange, or family). 

Deadline for applying for a Brexit residence permit is 30 June 2021

All UK nationals living in the Netherlands before 31 December 2020 have until 1 July 2021 to submit an application. However, from 1 January 2021, all UK nationals need to be able to prove that they are entitled to live in the Netherlands under the Withdrawal Agreement. The easiest way to do this is with a residence card. That is why the IND advises all UK nationals in the Netherlands to submit an application as soon as possible and preferably before the end of this year. Besides, having the residence document in good time ensures convenience in social and economic life.

The Netherlands at the forefront of Europe

The IND is committed to ensuring that the residence of those UK nationals who came to live in the Netherlands before 31 December proceeds of as well as possible. The handling of the applications for a residence permit from UK nationals is going well. In February this year, the first Brexit residence card was handed out, making the Netherlands the first European country to do so. Approximately 34,000 UK nationals received an invitation to apply for a residence document. By mid-December, more than 80% had already applied.

Frontier workers

In October 2020, the IND started an on-line application procedure for frontier workers.  The Netherlands is one of the first countries within Europe to provide this group of UK nationals with a document. Frontier workers are employees (not on secondment) or self-employed persons established in the Netherlands who carry out economic activities. As they are not living here, they do not qualify for a residence document. However, they may apply for a 'frontier worker's document' if they were working as frontier workers in the Netherlands before 1 January 2021 and comply with the conditions of the Withdrawal Agreement.

The purpose of the frontier worker's document is to demonstrate that they meet the Withdrawal Agreement's conditions. On that basis, they will continue their economic activities as frontier workers in the Netherlands from 31 December 2020. The frontier worker's document is mainly used to enter and leave the Netherlands (when crossing the border). It proves that people are working in the Netherlands as frontier workers under the Withdrawal Agreement. Currently, the application for a frontier worker's document is free of charge.

More information

Q&A Brexit