European Blue Card | Undutchables

European Blue Card

A European blue card residence permit allows a highly skilled employee to live and work in the Netherlands. On this page, you can find out about everything you need to know, the conditions and how to apply for a blue card for the Netherlands.

What is a European Blue Card?

The European Blue Card is a residence and work permit for highly skilled migrants from outside the European Union. It was implemented to attract highly skilled non-EU nationals to come to work in the European Union.

The European Blue Card was introduced in the Netherlands on 19 June 2011 as another approved EU work permit added to the National Highly Skilled Migrant Programme. The EU Blue Card Council Directive makes it easier for highly skilled foreign nationals from outside the EU/ EEA countries and Switzerland to settle and work in the Netherlands or other EU member states.

The Dutch Highly Skilled Migrant Visa is a national work and residence permit that coexists besides the European Blue Card. Employers and their highly skilled non-EU employees can choose between those two options. To receive a blue card for the Netherlands an application must be submitted either by the employer or the employee.

Who can apply for a European Blue Card for the Netherlands?

  • You live outside the EU, EEA or Switzerland and you want to apply for a European blue card to start working in the Netherlands.

  • You already live in one of the EU countries that are part of the European blue card scheme and hold a European blue card residence permit. You now want to work in the Netherlands as a European blue card holder.

  • You are an employer and want to employ a foreign employee with a European blue card.

The requirements for receiving a blue card for the Netherlands

A residence permit from the other EU member state is required. To obtain this residence permit, the employee must comply with the conditions applicable in that member state. The employee must have a contract for highly qualified employment for at least one year in the Netherlands. The validity of the EU Blue Card is connected to the duration of the work contract: if the work contract is for 3 years, the EU Blue Card will be issued for a period of 3 years as well.

The employee must have completed a higher education programme of at least three years. Nuffic has to approve the employee’s diploma. The employee also has to meet the income requirements. They must have a passport valid for at least 6 months when filing the application as well.

Extra documents you’ll need to hand in with your application:

  • A copy of the page in your passport that contains the personal data and the period of validity. You should also send a copy of the pages with travel stamps.

  • A copy of the employment contract, in which it is stated that the employee will work for at least 12 months.

  • An employer's declaration.

  • A copy of your payslips for the past 3 months.

  • If the employee has a Dutch degree: a certified copy of the degree certificate.

  • If the employee has a foreign degree: a copy of the degree certificate and the degree evaluation from Nuffic.

  • If the employee has a protected profession: evidence that he or she meets the statutory requirements for being allowed to practise that profession in the Netherlands.

For more information, please visit the IND website.

The IND (immigratie & naturalisatiedienst) has 90 days to decide on your EU blue card Netherlands application. As an employee you can track the application’s process. You can also apply for a review of the decision made if you do not agree with the decision. Once you have received your blue card for the Netherlands you’re allowed to start working!

Are you a highly skilled migrant and are you looking for a job? Undutchables might be the place for you. Sign up and check out our vacancies here.

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