Question in Tax Law

Question : What are the basic tax laws for foreigners living in the Netherlands?

Answer from Jan-Hein van Leeuwen, expert in Tax Law

Once such a foreigner becomes a tax resident of the Netherlands, he/she is taxable in the Netherlands for his/her worldwide earned income and worldwide held equity. Again tax residency in the Netherlands is created when a person’s main point of living socially and economically is located in the Netherlands. Private individuals are subject to Dutch personal income tax/ premium social security. Income is taxed at a progressive tax/premium rate whilst equity is taxed at a flat tax rate.


Solely for expats the Netherlands offer a very interesting tax benefit. It is called the 30%-ruling and offers a full tax exemption for 30% of the annually earned salary, meaning only 70% of the income is taxed and the top 30% of the income is exempted. Due to the progressive tax rates, the tax benefit is therefore realised at the highest applicable tax bracket. The maximum application term of the 30% ruling is eight years, prior stays in the Netherlands during the prior 25 years are deducted from this eight year term. Certain minimum salary and distance (from the Dutch border) criteria are to be met in order to qualify for this 30% ruling. Most expats will qualify for the 30% ruling. For more information on the 30% ruling please follow this link:

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