Contract in Netherlands

Contracting in Netherlands - FAQ

What is the monthly cost of using an Umbrella Company in Netherlands? 

Around €350 per month.


How long does it take to get a work permit in Netherlands?

2 to 5 weeks.

What is the estimated net retention in Netherlands for a contractor earning USD 500 per day?

*update pending

What is the estimated net retention in Netherlands for a contractor earning USD 1000 per day?

Assuming the candidate is entitled to the 30% ruling then around 65-70%.

*doesn’t include fee for work permit or other immigration costs

More questions? See the rest of the FAQ for more information on the Netherlands work permit process

Getting Started

Taking a contract in Netherlands means tackling numerous administrative headaches. Before you even begin working as an independent contractor, there are complicated payroll, tax, and immigration issues to work out.

All this complex admin comes on top of any personal matters you need to sort, as well. Even worse, it can be a huge nuisance when you’re already in Netherlands, trying to adjust to a huge relocation – and a new contract!

Streamlining even a few of these obstacles can dramatically improve your experience.

Luckily, there are ways to simplify more than just a few…

Freelance Netherlands Requirements


One of your first hurdles will be securing the proper work permit. To get one, you usually need an employer to sponsor you. This means they take full responsibility for you while you’re working in the country.

That’s fine for full-time employees, but what about independent contractors?

Many clients won’t offer sponsorship for a temporary worker and, even if they do, you’ll need to apply for a new permit for each new contract. This creates a mountain of paperwork each time you want to work with a new client.


Additionally, you need to figure out what you owe (if anything) in taxes for your work in Netherlands.

Of course, there’s also your country of tax residency; you’re likely to owe something on that front, too.

You can take advantage of certain tax structures, but doing so requires a strong familiarity with expat tax law in Netherlands.

Benefits of working through an Umbrella Company in Netherlands

You can outsource a lot of these admin problems to specialists at an Umbrella Company (or contractor management company).

An Umbrella Company basically becomes your full-time “employer,” even though you stay in control of your workload, clients, and schedule. The Umbrella Company simply collects and processes your payments, filtering out social security and any necessary fees.

They can also sponsor your work permit, meaning you get to take on new clients without the aggravation of applying for a new permit each time.

Even better, most specialise in tax law for contractors in Netherlands and can ensure you’re keeping the largest amount of your earnings as possible. They can even assist you with reducing your tax liability back home.

In short, you get all the benefits of a working for an employer, without sacrificing your autonomy as a contractor.

How to get started with the right Umbrella Company

There’s a lot of Umbrella Companies out there; finding the right one for you can be daunting.

We’ve done the research on Umbrella Companies in Netherlands, and know how to match contractors with the perfect company. If you’ve already secured a contract, get in touch with us and let us know your situation. We can get you started with the best Umbrella Company for you, or simply offer feedback on contracting in Netherlands.

Oh, and we don’t charge anything. Drop us a line and get free, honest, simple advice.

Send your details for more information

Additional FAQ - work permits & payroll


What is the cost of a Work Permit in Netherlands?

€ 1,850

What documentation is required for a work permit in Netherlands?

Passport photos, degree/diploma/professional certifications, contract, copy of your passport, police clearance. This list isn’t exhaustive and will depend on such factors as the nationality of the contractor, skill-set etc.

What is the work permit process in Netherlands?

The company sponsoring your visa must have the KMR (Knowledge Migrant Ruling) that allows them to hire skilled non-EU/EFTA nationals under a special residence permit. The candidate must provide their documentation: passport photos, degree/diploma/professional certifications, contract, copy of your passport, police clearance. Then the company sponsoring your permit will make the application to the Dutch authorities and once approved the candidate has the visa stamped into their passport in their country of residence.

Can you transfer from a business visa to a work permit in Netherlands?


Can we organise a business visa for Netherlands?


How long does it take to process a business visa in Netherlands?

5 to 7 days.

How much does a business visa cost in Netherlands?

€ 300


Can nationals of certain countries enter Netherlands without a business visa (ex. on an entry visa or visa waiver)?


Yes. All EU national countries.





Skill-set dependent



How does payroll work in Netherlands?


Your employer (the company sponsoring your visa) pays the candidate on a monthly basis. They deduct social security - which is approximately 21.2% for employers and 31.15% for employees (up to the first EUR 32 127 of income). They also deduct income tax - which is progressive and varies from 2.35% to 52% pendant on salary level. These deductions are made at source and paid to the Netherlands tax authorities. Candidates are able to offset their taxable income with relevant business expenses. The World Bank estimates it takes employers in Netherlands 64 man days to ensure compliance with payroll and labour taxes each year.