Spouse or (registered) partner

You wish to live in the Netherlands with your spouse or partner. To live in the Netherlands with your spouse or partner, you need a residence permit. What are the conditions for this residence permit? And how does the application procedure work?

Other conditions apply to persons with the nationality of an EU/EEA country or Switzerland and their family members.

Conditions

There are certain conditions that apply to everyone. In addition, you and your partner have to meet the following conditions:

  • You are married to each other or have entered into a registered partnership together. Or you are unmarried and have a long-term and exclusive relationship with each other.
  • One of the following situations applies:

      • Your partner is a Dutch citizen.
      • Your partner lives in the Netherlands and has a residence permit for a non-temporary purpose of stay.
      • Your partner lives in the Netherlands with a residence permit for:
        • study
        • orientation year highly educated persons
        • cross border service provider
        • intra Corporate Transferees
        • stay with a family member
        • temporary asylum
        • medical treatment
        • awaiting a decision on a request to establish Dutch citizenship (Art. 17 RWN)
        • temporary humanitarian grounds (except stay as a unaccompanied minor foreign national)
        • foreign investor
  • Your partner lives in the Netherlands with a valid residence permit for at least 1 year already. This condition does not apply if:

      • You and your partner both live abroad and travel to the Netherlands together.
      • Admission of the family member is in the interests of minor children.
      • Your partner already lives in the Netherlands and has a temporary residence permit for:
        • study
        • orientation year highly educated persons
        • Intra Corporate Transferees
        • stay as a highly skilled migrant
        • Holder of a European Blue Card
        • Scientific researcher under Directive 2005/71/EC
        • paid employment
        • self employed person
        • cross border service provider
        •  temporary asylum
        • employment as non-privileged military or non-military civilian staff (NATO)
        • awaiting a decision on a request to establish Dutch citizenship (Art. 17 RWN),  
        • medical treatment
        • temporary humanitarian grounds (except stay as a unaccompanied minor foreign national)
        • foreign investor
        • stay under the Association Treaty between the European Union and Turkey (1/80)
        • stay on the basis of the Dutch-American Friendship Treaty or the Dutch-Japanese Trade Agreement
  • You are both 21 years or older.
  • You have passed the civic integration examination abroad or you are exempt from taking this examination
  • Your partner must have a sufficient independent long-term income. This condition does not apply in the following situations:
    • Your partner has reached the AOW pension age. The AOW pension age differs for persons.
    • Your partner is permanently and fully unfit to work. Contact the IND for more information.
    • Your partner is permanently unable to meet the requirement for labour participation. Contact the IND for more information.
  • You are going to live with your partner and will register at the same address as your partner's.
  • Your partner declares that he or she is your sponsor.

Other conditions may apply for Turkish nationals and their family members.

Costs

This application costs € 237. 

Checklist documents  

The application form lists the documents that you have to enclose with the application.

You have to have official foreign documents legalised and translated into Dutch, English, French or German. 
 

Steps in the application procedure

1. Submit application and payment

To travel to the Netherlands, you need a provisional residence permit (mvv). The mvv is a sticker that the Dutch representation places in the passport. In some cases, you do not need an mvv.

You apply for the mvv and the residence permit at the same time. This can be done in 2 ways:

  • Your partner applies to the IND in the Netherlands.
    Your partner uses the application form. The form is at the bottom of this page. Your partner sends the application form and the documents required to the IND by post. After the application has been received, the IND sends a letter stating how the fees are to be paid.
  • You apply to the Dutch representation in your own country or the country of continuous residence.
    You submit the application to the Dutch representation. The Dutch representation forwards your application to the IND. After you have submitted the application, you will get a letter from the Dutch representation stating how the fees are to be paid. For the application form and information on how to apply and how to pay the fees, please contact the Dutch representation.

The IND recommends your partner to start the application. This helps save you travel costs for the journey to the Dutch representation.

Receive mail quickly online with the Messagebox

You can also receive your mail from IND online with the Messagebox. This is your personal mailbox from MijnOverheid. Government organisations place messages for you in this box. You receive an e-mail when you have mail from the IND. You can arrange it easily on www.ind.nl/message-box.

2. Receipt and check application

​Your partner will get a confirmation letter once the IND has received your application. The confirmation letter states the date the IND has received the application. It also states the period within which the IND makes a decision.

The IND will then check to see if your application is complete and that the fees have been paid. Are documents missing, or are documents not correct? In that case, the IND will send your partner a letter: a request to rectify the omission. This letter lists the documents that your partner still needs to send. Send the requested documents before the mentioned date to the IND.

3. Decision

​The IND checks whether you and your partner meet all the conditions required for the residence permit. The IND has to make a decision within a period of 90 days.

  • Negative decision
    If you or your partner do not meet the conditions, you will not get an mvv and a residence permit. This decision is given in the formal decision. The IND sends the decision to your partner. You can register an objection against this decision.
  • Positive decision
    If you and your partner meet all the conditions, you will get an mvv and a residence permit. Your partner receives this a letter about this decision. The IND also informs the Dutch representation.

4. Collect mvv

​You collect the mvv from the Dutch representation that your partner has filled in on the application form, or where you have submitted the application form. This is also the representation where you did your civic integration examination abroad.

You have 3 months to collect the mvv. Please make an appointment for this with the representation. Your passport must be valid for at least 6 months on the day you get the mvv.

Did your partner apply in the Netherlands? You then have to provide your biometric information upon collecting the mvv.

5. Travel to the Netherlands

​Once you have collected your mvv, you can travel to the Netherlands. The mvv is valid for 90 days. The validity is shown on the mvv sticker. The mvv sticker shows 2 dates:

  • Effective date: as of this date the mvv is valid.
  • End date: as of this date the mvv is no longer valid.
The mvv allows you to travel within the Schengen Area.

Steps in the application procedure

1. Submit application and payment

You do not need a visa to travel to the Netherlands. You can apply for a residence permit directly.

Submitting the application can be done in 2 ways:

  • Your partner applies to the IND in the Netherlands. You are still abroad.
    Your partner uses the application form. The form is at the bottom of this page. Your partner sends the application form together with the required documents to the IND by post. After the application has been received, the IND sends a letter stating how the fees are to be paid. 
  • You apply in the Netherlands.
    You apply for the residence permit to the IND yourself. Please use the application form. The form is at the bottom of this page. You send the application form and the documents required to the IND by post. After the application has been received, the IND sends a letter stating how the fees are to be paid.

You have to give your biometric information at an IND Desk within 2 weeks after having sent the application.

Receive mail quickly online with the Messagebox

You can also receive your mail from IND online with the Messagebox. This is your personal mailbox from MijnOverheid. Government organisations place messages for you in this box. You receive an e-mail when you have mail from the IND. You can arrange it easily on www.ind.nl/message-box.

2. Receipt and check application

Your partner will get a confirmation letter once the IND has received your application. The confirmation letter states the date the IND has received the application. It also states the period within which the IND makes a decision.

The IND will then check to see if your application is complete and that the fees have been paid. Are documents missing, or are documents not correct? In that case, the IND will send you a letter: a request to rectify the omission. This letter lists the documents that you still need to send. Send the requested documents before the mentioned date to the IND.

3. Decision

The IND checks whether you and your partner meet all the conditions required for the residence permit. The IND has to make a decision within a period of 90 days.

  • Negative decision
    If you and your partner do not meet the conditions, you will not get a residence permit. This decision is given in the formal decision. You can register an objection against this decision.
  • Positive decision
    If you and your partner meet all the conditions, you will get a residence permit. You will receive a letter from the IND to collect the residence permit.

Are you still abroad? Upon arrival in the Netherlands, you have to go to an IND desk to provide the biometric information.

Application forms and costs

Registration Form Basic Civic Integration Examination Abroad

Use this form to register for the Civic Integration Examination Abroad.

Please note: This is not an IND form, but a form of the Education Executive Agency (DUO).

Register  

Application for a residence permit with the purpose of residence being ‘family members and relatives’ (sponsor)7518

Use this form if your partner starts the application.

Checklist documents

The application form lists the documents that you have to enclose with the application. 

You have to have official foreign documents legalised and translated into Dutch, English, French or German.

How to send documents to the IND:

  • You only send copies of your documents, single-sided and on A4 paper.
  • The copies must be complete and legible.
  • Write down your V-number or client number on each copy. If you do not know these numbers, then please write your name and date of birth on each copy.
  • Do not send USB sticks, CDs or DVDs.
  • You keep the original documents yourself. You have to show these documents to the Dutch representation abroad.

Costs application

This application costs € 237.

  • Are you from San Marino or Israel? Based on the Benelux Treaty you do not pay for the application.
  • Are you a family member of NATO personnel or personnel of TRON? You do not pay for the application.
  • Do you have the Turkish nationality? Or is your partner a Turkish national and does your partner have the right to work in the Netherlands? Your application costs € 64.
  • Are you applying for Residence with a family member pursuant to Section 8 ECHR in connection with insufficient income?  You do not pay for the application when you attach the following documents to your application:
    • AT-2 personal income statement, issued by the Legal Aid Council (Raad voor Rechtsbijstand), showing that the principal person did not have any income in the relevant year and does not have any assets;
    • Means of evidence showing that the foreign national and/or the sponsor cannot obtain sufficient funds at short notice to pay the fees of the application. The foreign national and the sponsor also have to show that they cannot turn to family members or other elegible third parties. You can, for example, show evidence of applications for loans (with family, friends/acquaintances and banks) that are not granted.

Download  

Application for family members of your employee via recognised sponsor7514

Your recognised employer uses this form to apply for the residence permit of your family members. Your employer can also start the application online.

Checklist documents

Your employer has a list of documents that you need.

You have to have official foreign documents legalised and translated into Dutch, English, French or German.

How to send documents to the IND:

  • You only send copies of your documents, single-sided and on A4 paper.
  • The copies must be complete and legible.
  • Write down your V-number or client number on each copy. If you do not know these numbers, then please write your name and date of birth on each copy.
  • Do not send USB sticks, CDs or DVDs.
  • You keep the original documents yourself. You have to show these documents to the Dutch representation abroad.

Costs application

This application costs € 237.

  • Children under 18 pay € 51.
  • Are you from San Marino or Israel? Based on the Benelux Treaty you do not pay for the application.
  • Are you a family member of NATO personnel or personnel of TRON? You do not pay for the application.
  • Do you have the Turkish nationality? Or is your partner a Turkish national and does your partner have the right to work in the Netherlands? Your application costs € 64. ​

Download  

Application forms and costs

Application for a residence permit with the purpose of residence being ‘family members and relatives’ (sponsor)7518

Use this form if your partner starts the application.

Checklist documents

The application form lists the documents that you have to enclose with the application. 

You have to have official foreign documents legalised and translated into Dutch, English, French or German.

How to send documents to the IND:

  • You only send copies of your documents, single-sided and on A4 paper.
  • The copies must be complete and legible.
  • Write down your V-number or client number on each copy. If you do not know these numbers, then please write your name and date of birth on each copy.
  • Do not send USB sticks, CDs or DVDs.
  • You keep the original documents yourself. You have to show these documents to the Dutch representation abroad.

Costs application

This application costs € 237.

  • Are you a family member of NATO personnel or personnel of TRON? You do not pay for the application.
  • Do you have the Turkish nationality? Or is your partner a Turkish national and does your partner have the right to work in the Netherlands? Your application costs € 51.

Download  

Application for a residence permit with the purpose of residence ‘family and relatives’ (foreign national)7525

Use this form if you are going to start the application yourself.

Checklist documents

The application form lists the documents that you have to enclose with the application.

You have to have official foreign documents legalised and translated into Dutch, English, French or German.

How to send documents to the IND:

  • You only send copies of your documents, single-sided and on A4 paper.
  • The copies must be complete and legible.
  • Write down your V-number or client number on each copy. If you do not know these numbers, then please write your name and date of birth on each copy.
  • Do not send USB sticks, CDs or DVDs.
  • You keep the original documents yourself. You have to show these documents to the Dutch representation abroad.

Costs application

This application costs € 237.

  • Are you a family member of NATO personnel or personnel of TRON? You do not pay for the application.
  • Do you have the Turkish nationality? Or is your partner a Turkish national and does your partner have the right to work in the Netherlands? Your application costs € 51.
  • Are you applying for Residence with a family member pursuant to Section 8 ECHR in connection with insufficient income?  You do not pay for the application when you attach the following documents to your application:
    • AT-2 personal income statement, issued by the Legal Aid Council (Raad voor Rechtsbijstand), showing that the principal person did not have any income in the relevant year and does not have any assets;
    • Means of evidence showing that the foreign national and/or the sponsor cannot obtain sufficient funds at short notice to pay the fees of the application. The foreign national and the sponsor also have to show that they cannot turn to family members or other elegible third parties. You can, for example, show evidence of applications for loans (with family, friends/acquaintances and banks) that are not granted.

Download  

Application for a residence permit for a ‘long-term third country national from outside the EU’ (sponsor)7519

Use this form if you have the status 'long-term third country national' in another EU-country. Of if you are a family member of a person that has the status 'long-term third country national' in another EU-country and you already had a residence permit as a family member of your partner in that other country. Your partner (sponsor) submits the application.

Checklist documents

The application form lists the documents that you have to enclose with the application.

You have to have official foreign documents legalised and translated into Dutch, English, French or German.

How to send documents to the IND:

  • You only send copies of your documents, single-sided and on A4 paper.
  • The copies must be complete and legible.
  • Write down your V-number or client number on each copy. If you do not know these numbers, then please write your name and date of birth on each copy.
  • Do not send USB sticks, CDs or DVDs.
  • You keep the original documents yourself. You have to show these documents to the Dutch representation abroad.

Costs application

This application costs [Langdurige ingezetene die deze status heeft gekregen in een ander EU-land$zondermvvbedrag].

Download  

Application for a residence permit for a ‘longterm third country national from outside the EU’ (foreign national)7528

Use this form if you have the status 'long-term third country national' in another EU-country. Of if you are a family member of a person that has the status 'long-term third country national' in another EU-country and you already had a residence permit as a family member of your partner in that other country. 

Checklist documents

The application form lists the documents that you have to enclose with the application.

You have to have official foreign documents legalised and translated into Dutch, English, French or German.

How to send documents to the IND:

  • You only send copies of your documents, single-sided and on A4 paper.
  • The copies must be complete and legible.
  • Write down your V-number or client number on each copy. If you do not know these numbers, then please write your name and date of birth on each copy.
  • Do not send USB sticks, CDs or DVDs.
  • You keep the original documents yourself. You have to show these documents to the Dutch representation abroad.

Costs application

This application costs [Langdurige ingezetene die deze status heeft gekregen in een ander EU-land$zondermvvbedrag].

Download  

Application for family members of your employee via recognised sponsor7514

​Your recognised employer uses this form to apply for the residence permit of your family members. Your employer can also start the application online.

Checklist documents

Your employer has a list of documents that you need.

You have to have official foreign documents legalised and translated into Dutch, English, French or German.

How to send documents to the IND:

  • You only send copies of your documents, single-sided and on A4 paper.
  • The copies must be complete and legible.
  • Write down your V-number or client number on each copy. If you do not know these numbers, then please write your name and date of birth on each copy.
  • Do not send USB sticks, CDs or DVDs.
  • You keep the original documents yourself. You have to show these documents to the Dutch representation abroad.

Costs application

This application costs € 237.

  • Children under 18 pay € 51.
  • Are you from San Marino or Israel? Based on the Benelux Treaty you do not pay for the application.
  • Are you a family member of NATO personnel or personnel of TRON? You do not pay for the application.
  • Do you have the Turkish nationality? Or is your partner a Turkish national and does your partner have the right to work in the Netherlands? Your application costs € 64. 

Apply online  Download  

After the application

Collect your residence permit

The IND aims to have your residence permit ready within 2 weeks following your arrival in the Netherlands. The IND will send you a letter indicating when you can collect the residence permit. You do not have to make an appointment to collect your residence permit.

Check to see if the information on the residence permit is correct while you are still at the IND desk. If something is incorrect, please inform the IND staff member at once.

Registration with the municipality

Upon arrival in the Netherlands, you must register in the Municipal Personal Records Database (BPR)  in the municipality you are going to live.

To register with the municipality you need a legalised and translated  birth certificate. Take this therefore with you when you travel to the Netherlands.

TB test

You have indicated your intent to undergo a tuberculosis test (TB test) when you applied. You have to make an appointment for this with the Area Health Authority (GGD). You do this within 3 months after having received your residence permit. Please take the 'TB test referral form' with you to the appointment.

In some cases you are exempt from taking a TB test.

Take out health insurance

Anyone living in the Netherlands must take out health insurance. You do this within 4 months following your arrival in the Netherlands.

Civic integration in the Netherlands

If you are subject to the integration requirement, you will receive a letter from the Education Executive Agency (DUO) stating that you must integrate in the Netherlands.

Validity residence permit

The validity of your residence permit depends on your partner. Does your partner have a temporary residence permit, then the end date of your residence permit matches your partner's. If your partner is a Dutch citizen or has a permanent residence permit, your residence permit is then valid for 5 years. 

Right to work

The back of your residence permit shows if you are allowed to work. Whether you are allowed to work depends on the work rights of your partner.

Is your partner a Dutch citizen? Your residence permit states 'arbeid vrij toegestaan. TWV niet vereist' ('work allowed free from restrictions. Work permit not required').

Does your partner have a residence permit? You get the same work rights as your partner. Does your partner need a TWV to work, than you also need a TWV to work. Is your partner not allowed to work, than you are also not allowed to work.

In the following situations you will get other work rights as your partner:

  • Your partner has a residence permit as a highly skilled migrant, scientific researcher or is holder of the European Blue Card. You may work freely. Your residence permit states 'arbeid vrij toegestaan. TWV niet vereist' ('work allowed free from restrictions. Work permit not required').
  • Your partner has a residence permit for study. You are not allowed to work. Your residence permit states 'arbeid niet toegestaan' ('work not allowed').
  • Your partner has a Single Permit (GVVA). You are only allowed to work if your employer has a work permit for you. Your residence permit states 'arbeid toegestaan, mits TWV verleend' ('work allowed, work permit required').

Legal obligations

There are a number of legal obligations that apply to you and your partner.

The IND monitors your compliance with these legal obligations. Failure to meet these legal obligations may have consequences.

Further applications (extend or change) / return visa

Replace residence permit

Is your residence permit damaged, lost or stolen? In that case, have the residence permit replaced.

Extend residence permit

Is your residence permit due to expire soon? Apply for an extension.

Change residence permit

Having had a residence permit to stay with family for a period of 5 years, you may change your residence permit for an independent residence permit. 

Has something changed in your situation that influences your residence permit? Please report this immediately to the IND. It may mean that the residence permit has to be changed sooner.

Permanent stay

Having had a residence permit for a period of 5 years to stay with a spouse or partner, you may apply for a permanent residence permit.

Becoming a Dutch citizen

Having had a residence permit for a period of 5 years to stay with a spouse or partner, you may apply for Dutch citizenship.

Return visa

If you are awaiting a procedure, you do not have a valid residence document at present and you wish to travel outside the Netherlands, you may need a return visa to re-enter the Netherlands. This could be the case if your current residence permit is no longer valid or your current residence permit will expire during your stay outside of the Netherlands. To apply for a return visa you must meet certain conditions. 

Long-term and exclusive relationship

​A relationship is long-term and exclusive if the relationship can be considered a marriage. You can show this among other things by filling out a relationship declaration. In the relationship declaration you and your partner declare that you are going to live together in the Netherlands. You are going to run a joint household. You also declare that you have an exclusive relationship with each other. You can find the relationship declaration as an appendix in the application form.

Sponsor

​A sponsor is a person, employer or organisation that has an interest in the arrival of the foreign national in the Netherlands. A sponsor has rights, but also obligations with regard to the foreign national. The sponsor can start the application for the foreign national from the Netherlands .

Provisional residence permit (mvv)

​The provisional residence permit (mvv) is a visa you need if you wish to stay in the Netherlands for more than 90 days.

Dutch representation

​This is the Dutch embassy or consulate.

Country of continuous residence

​A country of continuous residence is a country (other than the country of origin) where you may lawfully live for more than 3 months. This means you have a valid residence permit for that country. Or that you are waiting for your application for a residence permit to be aproved.

Are you in a country in your free term? Of with a visa for short stay (maximum of 3 months)? This is not continuous residence.

Formal decision

​A formal letter with the decision on your application.

TWV

​A TWV is a work permit. The employer applies for a TWV with UWV (Netherlands Employees Insurance Agency). UWV examines among other things if there is no employee with the Dutch, EU/EEA or Swiss nationality that is qualified for the job. For more information about the TWV, check the website of UWV (only in Dutch).