The Dutch immigration policies allow companies to, quickly and in a straightforward manner, recruit highly skilled personnel from outside the European Union. In order to allow this there is a specific ruling for highly skilled labour. Within the EU this ruling is among the most favourable for allowing skilled labour in.
The first step for a company to be able to employ highly skilled migrants is to become a recognised sponsor. The Dutch Immigration Service makes the assessment whether a company can be a trusted partner for the Immigration Service and be accepted as recognised sponsor. This takes approximately 5 weeks.
- The government fee to apply to be become a recognised sponsor is € 4,326.
- For start-ups and companies employing less than 50 employees the government fee is € 2,162.
Once the company is approved to become a recognised sponsor, this is for indefinite period. Only once approved can the company file applications for highly skilled migrant visa and work permits.
The EU has adopted Directive 2009/50/EC which regulates the entry of highly skilled migrants within the EU. This particular residence permit is called the EU Blue Card.The EU Blue Card will co-exist with the residence permit for highly skilled migrants. The EU Blue Card is not easier to be acquired than the residence permit for highly skilled migrants, but it will allow for better possibilities to work in other EU member countries. The salary threshold to qualify for the EU Blue Card is gross per month € 5,867 (exclusive 8% holiday pay), which is gross annually € 70,404 (excluding 8% holiday allowance).
- Foreigners, 30 years of age or older, need to earn a gross monthly salary of € 5,008 (excluding 8% holiday pay), which comes down to an annual salary of at least € 60,096 (excluding 8% holiday allowance).
- For foreigners younger than 30 years of age, the gross monthly salary threshold is € 3,672 (exclusive 8% holiday pay), which is annually € 44,064 (exclusive 8% holiday allowance).
- For foreigners who have studied and graduated in the Netherlands following their studies, the threshold is € 2,631 gross per month (exclusive 8% holiday pay), on an annual basis that is € 31,572 (excluding 8% holiday allowance).
When applying for a highly skilled migrant visa and residence permit, a labour contract indicating the salary does not have to be included with the application.
The procedure itself is fairly quick. According to the policy of the IND (Immigration and Naturalisation Service) a decision on the application is given within two weeks of the submission. In practise it takes between 2-3 weeks.
Nationals that do need an MVV-visa (Schengen D-visa) to enter the Netherlands, will need another 1 to 7 days to collect the MVV-visa at the Dutch embassy.
The company in the Netherlands applying for the HSM visa does need to be registered ahead of time with the Highly Skilled Migrant Scheme with the IND. This registration can be done within 4 to 6 weeks.
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