Social security for cross-border working and entrepreneurship

Do you live in a country other than the country in which you work? Or do you receive benefits from a country other than your country of residence? When working and doing business across borders, you want to know in which country you are socially insured. In the Netherlands, the social insurances consist of employee and national insurances.

Employee insurance schemes

Employee insurances are compulsory for everyone who works in the Netherlands as an employee. These insurances provide income for when you get sick or for when you lose your job. Like sickness benefit, unemployment benefit and WIA benefit.

The schemes are the following:

  • Unemployment Insurance Act (Werkloosheidswet, WW)
  • Work and Income (Capacity for Work) Act (Wet werk en inkomen naar arbeidsvermogen, WIA)
  • Sickness Benefits Act (Ziektewet, ZW)
  • Invalidity Insurance Act (Wet op de arbeidsongeschiktheidsverzekering, WAO): only for employees that already received WAO before 1 January 2006

Employers pay contributions on behalf of their employees to the Dutch Tax and Customs Administration (Belastingdienst). These contributions are part of the payroll tax. The Employee Insurance Agency (Uitvoeringsinstituut Werknemersverzekeringen, UWV) arranges payment of employee benefits. With regard to the WIA you can opt to be a self-insurer.

Self-employed professionals do not pay any contributions for these insurances, unless they make arrangements for their insurances themselves.

National insurance schemes

National insurance is compulsory for everyone who works or lives permanently in the Netherlands. The national insurance contributions are calculated on the basis of your premium income.

The schemes are the following:

  • General Child Benefit Act (Algemene Kinderbijslagwet, AKW)
  • National Survivor Benefits Act (Algemene nabestaandenwet, ANW)
  • General Old Age Pensions Act (Algemene Ouderdomswet, AOW)
  • Long-term Care Act (Wet langdurige zorg, Wlz)

You do not pay any contribution for the AKW.

The national insurance contributions are deducted from your salary together with the wage tax, or levied in one tax assessment together with the income tax.
In certain cases, you may not be insured under the national insurance schemes. In that case, you do not have to pay any contributions, but you are also not entitled to the tax credit for the national insurance contribution.

National insurance if you live outside the Netherlands

If you do not live in the Netherlands and do not have an income from the Netherlands. If so, you are not insured under the Dutch national insurance schemes. In that case, you no longer have to pay contributions and you are also not entitled to an Anw, Wlz or AKW benefit. After your emigration, you will also no longer accrue AOW pension rights but your previously accrued AOW entitlements will remain. However, there are situations in which, even after your emigration, you will still be insured under the Dutch national insurance schemes on the basis of (inter)national regulations.

If you do not live in the Netherlands, but you do have an income in or from the Netherlands, you will be entitled to a pension from the Netherlands. In that case, an assessment must be made as to whether you are compulsorily insured under the Dutch national insurance schemes. This depends on your income in the Netherlands.

Please note!

Check how your social security is arranged, especially if you receive a pension or social insurance benefit from another country. You may be eligible for exemption from certain national insurance schemes. You will not receive this exemption automatically; apply for the exemption yourself to the SVB.

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