Registration for Privileged People
Anyone that come to the Netherlands to represent another country, or work for an international organisation, is considered ‘privileged' (this includes their family members). This means that they derive their rights to live and work in the Netherlands due to a treaty, rather than through their citizenship (for example someone from an EU country), or through having complied with Dutch immigration laws (for example someone with a residence permit).
If you are a representative of a foreign country, or work for an international organisation, you can enjoy several benefits in the Netherlands. You also need to comply with various regulations, for example registration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (ProBas registration).
ProBas (Protocol Base) is the database of all privileged people living and working in the Netherlands, and is administered by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA). If you work for an international organisation or represent a country, then your employer will take care of this registration for you. You will also receive a privileged or MFA card: this acts as both ID and a residence permit. It also serves as proof of your privileged status in the Netherlands.
Registering with the Municipality and the BSN
Whilst the MFA will issue you with a BSN identification number, it won't be listed (‘activated') in the Dutch municipal register (BRP). This means that you won't be able to utilise most Dutch government services.
Whilst it is not required to also register in the BRP database, if you are staying in the Netherlands for anything longer than a month or two, we would highly recommend registering in the municipal register and ‘activating’ your BSN. Registration in the BRP database does not affect your privileged status, including your tax privileges.
Once you are registered in the BRP database, you'll be able to access DigiD, the Dutch government's online login for resident's affairs. You will also be able to register yourself or your children in educational programmes (DUO), enroll your children in the government vaccination programme (RIVM), take out Dutch health care insurance and apply for benefits.
It also means that you will be able to obtain a Dutch Coronavirus vaccination QR code.
How to register with the Municipality, and activate your BSN
You can ‘activate’ your number by attending an appointment at The Hague International Centre. During the appointment, we will register you in the BRP.
Please remember that everyone who is going to be registered in the BRP must attend their appointment in person. This includes family members and children.
Documents to bring to your appointment
- Valid identification (passport or EU identity card).
- Proof of occupancy: rental/tenancy agreement, home purchase deed or a signed statement by the main occupant of the house. Please use the following statement. Please bring a copy of the ID of the main occupant of the house and a copy of the signed rental/tenancy agreement or purchase deed of the house.
- Legalised birth, marriage and/ or divorce certificate (if available). Read more about legalisation and apostille at the website of the Dutch government.
- Privileged or MFA card.
Permanent residence after privileged status for 10 years
Anyone who has lived in the Netherlands with privileged status for 10 years or more may apply to the IND for permanent residency. For more information, see the IND website.