Family reunification refugee

Last update: 15 April 2024

You have an asylum residence permit and you want to apply for family reunification. Read how you apply for a residence permit and visa (MVV) for family reunification as a refugee. 


For family reunion these requirements apply to you and your family member:

  • You have an asylum residence permit. 
  • You can only submit this application for the following family members:
    • Your husband or wife;
    • Your partner; 
    • Your child or foster child;
    • Your parents if you were unaccompanied and under 18 when you submitted your asylum application.
  • You apply for the residence permit and visa (MVV) at the same time for your family member. This visa is called a provisional residence permit (in Dutch: machtiging tot voorlopig verblijf or MVV). You have to submit the application within 3 months after you obtained your asylum residence permit. This is the family reunification period.
  • Your family member is part of your family and was already part of your family abroad.
  • Are you applying for the MVV for your partner, husband or wife? Then both of you must be aged 18 or older. 
  • Your family member has not committed an offense or crime.  
  • You declare that you are the sponsor for your family member. The sponsor is the person who brings the family member to the Netherlands.
  • Is there a parent who stays behind in the country of origin? And does that parent have custody of the child? Then, that parent has to sign a permission statement. With it, the parent gives permission for child´s departure to the Netherlands.
  • You must prove the identity of your family member and the family relationship with documents. 


The application process for the residence permit consists of the following steps:

Show details Hide details
  • 1. Check requirements open minus
  • 2. Collect documents open minus
  • 1. Apply open minus
  • 3. Apply open minus
  • 4. Pay for the application open minus
  • 5. Wait for the decision on the application open minus
  • 6. Decision on the application open minus
  • 7. Pick up MVV and travel to the Netherlands open minus
  • 8. Registration in the Netherlands open minus

Application forms

You can submit this application online. You must have DigiD with SMS verification and internet banking (iDEAL).

Online Application for a 'Regular Provisional Residence permit - persons making a journey in connection with family reunification with an asylum seeker'

Written application forms

Download a form if you prefer to fill in the application in writing and send it by post.

My family member will apply on their own at the Dutch representation abroad:
I want to apply for an mvv for other family members, such as brothers and sisters:

Appointment family reunification of refugees IND Zevenaar

Your family member must travel to the Netherlands within 90 days after collecting the MVV. After arriving in the Netherlands, your family member reports within 3 days to the IND in Zevenaar. Registration in Zevenaar is by appointment only. 

Arrange reception COA

Do you live in a reception centre from COA or NIDOS? Or you live in a place of residence that is not suitable for all of your family members to live in? Then you need to ask the COA for reception for your family member. You do this by e-mail. Your contact person from VWN can help you with this. Ask for reception after the journey for your family member has been booked, but before they depart to the Netherlands.

Asking COA for reception by e-mail

This is how you ask the COA for reception for your family member:

  • Send an e-mail to the COA in which you ask for reception for your family member. Send the e-mail to this e-mail address:
  • Put the following details in the e-mail:
    • Your first and surname, your telephone number and e-mail address (or VWN’s e-mail address).
    • The first names and surnames of all your traveling family members.
    • The V-number of all your traveling family members.
    • Date of arrival in the Netherlands of your traveling family members. This is also the day your family members will need reception for the first time.
  • Within 2 working days you will receive a confirmation email from the COA saying where your reception is.

Appointment with the IND

Did you send an e-mail to the COA for reception? The COA will then make an appointment for you at the IND in Zevenaar. You do not have to make an appointment yourself. 

Make an appointment at IND refugee family reunification desk in Zevenaar

Make appointment

Important information when making the appointment 

  • Only make an appointment if you have a suitable place of residence for all your family members. Do you not have a suitable place of residence? The COA will then make an appointment for you. 
  • Only make an appointment after booking your family members’ journey to the Netherlands, but before their departure to the Netherlands.
  • Make an appointment for all family members who need to register in Zevenaar.  Fill out their V-numbers and first names and surnames.
  • Fill out your e-mail address or the e-mail address of your counsellor from VWN. 

Adress IND Zevenaar

The address of the IND refugee family reunification desk is: Ringbaan-Zuid 2A, 6905 DB Zevenaar. You and your family member have to report at the E-gebouw Aanmeld Nareis (E Building). The opening hours and a route description can be found on the page IND desks and locations. Staying the night is not possible in Zevenaar. 

Cancelling appointment Zevenaar

What if the appointment made in Zevenaar cannot go through? For example, because your family member arrives in the Netherlands later than planned? Then cancel the appointment via the link in the e-mail confirming your appointment. As soon as this is possible, make a new appointment for your family member.

The residence permit 

Find out what else you need to know about the residence permit:

Your family member will receive a derivative residence permit

Your family member will receive a derivative asylum residence permit. This means that the residence of your family member depends on your asylum residence permit. The IND can withdraw your family member’s residence permit if there is no longer a family relationship with you. For example, if your family member is a child who will go and live on their own within a year.

Your family member can apply for an independent asylum residence permit

Your family member may also apply for asylum in the Netherlands on their own. The IND then assesses whether your family member has a right to an independent asylum residence permit. 

Working with the residence permit

Your family member may work in the Netherlands with a temporary derivative residence permit. Their employer does not need a work permit (in Dutch: tewerkstellingsvergunning or TWV). On the back of the residence permit it says ‘Free to work. Work permit is not required (in Dutch: Arbeid vrij toegestaan. TWV niet vereist). 

Legal obligations

A sponsor has an obligation to provide information and an administrative obligation. Your family member has an obligation to provide information. Read more about the legal obligations of the sponsor for a family member and the foreign national’s obligation to provide information

The IND checks whether you meet your obligations. Are you violating your obligations? You then may get an administrative fine

Validity of the residence permit

Your family member’s residence permit is valid for 5 years.

Other applications

Replacement of the residence permit

Has your family member’s residence permit been damaged, lost or stolen? Then, have the residence permit replaced. Go to the page residence permit damaged or change of personal details or residence permit lost or stolen.

Extend the residence permit 

Will your family member’s residence permit expire soon? Then, your family member can extend the residence permit

Permanent residence permit

Has your family member had a residence permit for 5 years? Then, your family member can apply for a permanent residence permit.