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What you need to arrange if you want to work

Last updated: 11/22/2023, 1:50 PM
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If you want to perform paid work in the Netherlands, you need to arrange a number of things. You also have rights. Read here about what you need to arrange and what rights you have.

You need a BSN number to open a bank account

You must have a Dutch bank account in order to work. A bank account is required to enter into a contract with your employer. Your employer must deposit wages into your bank account. Your employer may not pay your wages in cash. Your employer cannot deposit your wages on your moneycard from the

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Central Agency for the Reception of Asylum Seekers (COA)

To open a bank account, you need a BSN number. You get this citizen service number when you register in the Dutch population register (BRP)

You cannot currently register in the BRP

Many people with a W-document are now unable to apply for a BSN. This is because of the long waiting times. Applications from people with a 5-year residence permit are given priority. After that, people with a W-document are next in line. Even if you have been in the Netherlands for 6 months and are allowed to work, you do not get priority.

Please note: If your employer already has a work permit for you, you will be given priority for registration with the BRP. Contact a COA employee at your reception centre.

If you have work you have to pay a contribution for childcare

If you are staying in the COA reception centre, you must report your income to COA. You then have to contribute to the costs of the reception centre. You can keep 25 percent of your income, up to a maximum of €246 per month.

If you earn more than the amount you have to pay for childcare, you get to keep the rest of the income as well.

Sometimes you need a Certificate of Good Conduct (CGC) to work

For some types of work, you need a Certificate of Good Conduct (CGC) to work. Usually the employer applies for this CGC for you. You do not have to do this yourself.

If you work in the Netherlands you have employment rights

You have the same employment rights as people with Dutch citizenship. Even if you only have a W-document for 1 year. These are your rights: 

  • Your employer may not pay you less than the minimum wage in the Netherlands. The minimum wage from the age of 21 is 13.27 euros per hour in 2024.

  • You are entitled to holiday and days off.

  • You have the right to call in sick.

  • Your employer must deposit your salary into your bank account every month.

  • Your employer must provide a safe and healthy work environment.

  • You work up to 60 hours per week, but not every week. 

  • Your employer must pay you a wage that is in line with the market. This means that the pay is normal for the work you will do with your knowledge and experience.

  • If you are a minor, you are not allowed to work at night or do dangerous work.

Please note: If you work when you are not allowed to, you do have the same employment rights.

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