Last updated: 3/15/2023, 3:08 PM

If you choose to stay in the Netherlands illegally, you cannot earn money legally. This is why you have to watch out for human trafficking and exploitation. You can read more about this on this page.

No contract

There are employers who hire people without residence and work permits. Those employers can be fined for this. They do not therefore usually draw up or get employees to sign an employment contract.

If you do have a contract, as the work is not legal, an employee cannot force the employer to abide by the contract. As a result, unlicensed employees are often in a vulnerable position. Employers can abuse them more easily.

If you work in the Netherlands illegally, you do not pay any taxes and do not accrue any social security contributions. This means you will not be paid when you are sick and will not receive financial support if you are fired.

Victim of human trafficking or exploitation

As some people do not have residence and work permits to work legally in the Netherlands, they are at high risk of becoming victims of human trafficking.


The Coordination Centre against Human Trafficking (CoMensha) is an organisation dedicated to fighting human trafficking and exploitation. If you are a victim of either of these, please contact CoMensha at (033) 448 11 86. You can call from Monday to Friday, between 09:00 and 17:00.

The Red Cross will help

The Red Cross helps people without residence permits get information about local services such as legal support, healthcare and shelter.