Residence permit au pair

Last update: 18 December 2023

You need a residence permit to live in the Netherlands as an au pair. Only an au pair agency recognised by the IND can apply for this residence permit for you. Find out what the requirements are and how an au pair agency can apply for the residence permit.


These are the requirements that apply to you and the host family.

  • You meet the general requirements that apply to everyone.
  • You are at least 18 and no more than 25 years old at the time of the application.
  • You are unmarried.
  • You do not have any (foster) children.
  • You have not had a residence permit for exchange in the Netherlands before.
  • You are going to live with a host family which is registered in the Personal Records Database (BRP). You will also be registered at that address.
  • Your host family has 2 or more members. They have Dutch nationality or a valid residence permit for the Netherlands.
  • Your host family meets the income requirements.
  • You have not worked for the host family before, in the Netherlands or abroad.
  • You are not related as a family member to the host family. Related means: parents, children, brothers and sisters, grandfathers and grandmothers, grandchildren, uncles and aunts, cousins, nieces and nephews, great grandparents and great grandchildren.
  • You are going to live in the Netherlands temporarily on an exchange programme as an au pair through a recognised au pair agency (recognised sponsor).
  • You will do light housekeeping tasks for the host family. You do this no more than 8 hours a day and for a maximum of 30 hours a week. You have 2 days off each week.
  • You will not carry out tasks for people who need more specialised care, for which you need to have a specific skill, such as nursing.
  • You and the host family will make a schedule for all 7 days of the week. You and the family sign this  schedule daily. The schedule must at least include:
    • how many of hours of light housekeeping tasks the au pair is going to do;
    • which 2 days of the week the au pair is off;
    • who does light housekeeping tasks besides the au pair: this person’s name must be given.
  • You have not signed a contract with a host family, intermediary agency (Dutch or foreign), or au pair agency stating that you must pay a fine if you do not fulfil the contract.
  • You have not paid any fees to an intermediary agency (Dutch or foreign) or au pair agency.
  • You have not paid more than €34 in costs to prepare for your stay in the Netherlands. For example, for registration and intermediary services by an intermediary agency or to take a course about staying in the Netherlands.

Process and costs

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Application forms

The au pair agency can submit this application online.

More information on access to and the possibilities in Business Portal

Written application forms

The au pair agency can also fill in the application form by hand and send it by post.

More information on access to and the possibilities in Business Portal

Written application forms

The au pair agency can also fill in the application form by hand and send it by post.

The residence permit

What else you need to know about the residence permit.

TB test

Did you indicate at the time of the application that you will take a TB (tuberculosis) test? Then make an appointment with the public health service (in Dutch: Gemeenschappelijke Gezondheidsdienst or GGD). Do this within 3 months after you have received the residence permit. Take the 

 with you to the appointment.

Working with the residence permit

As an au pair, you may only perform light housekeeping tasks. This is only allowed for the host family and at the address of the host family. In all cases you are only allowed to carry out the tasks from the day that you receive the residence permit. A work permit (in Dutch: tewerkstellingsvergunning or TWV) is not needed. You are not allowed to work for a second host family or an employer. 

It says on the back of your residence permit in Dutch: work permit not required for specific work, other work not permitted (in Dutch: TWV niet vereist voor specifieke arbeid, andere arbeid niet toegestaan). 

The Netherlands Labour Authority checks whether the au pair and the host family comply with the Foreign Nationals (Employment) Act (in Dutch: Wet arbeid vreemdeling or WAV).

Legal obligations

As a recognised sponsor, your au pair agency has an obligation to provide information, an obligation to keep and retain records and a duty of care. You only have an obligation to provide information. 

Read more about the legal obligations as a recognised sponsor and the foreign national’s obligation to provide information

The IND checks whether you meet your obligations. What if you do not? Then you can get an administrative fine.

Complaints about the host family

Try to first solve complaints or problems together with your host family. For example if you have to do more or different tasks than previously agreed upon. If you and your host family do not reach an agreement, then you can go to your au pair agency. If this does not help, call the IND’s Au Pair Information Line, phone number 06-10823594. You can also call this number in case of abuse or exploitation. Contact the police or file a police report in serious cases. 

Validity period of the residence permit

The au pair residence permit is valid for a maximum of 1 year. 

You must meet the requirements throughout this time. You may switch to a different host family or a different au pair agency. The au pair agency must, however, notify the IND of this.

Other applications

You cannot extend the residence permit for an au pair. Has your residence permit been damaged, lost or stolen? Then have the residence permit replaced. Visit the web page about Residence permit damaged or change of personal details or Residence permit lost or stolen.