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How to Get Dutch Citizenship: Everything You Need to Know Explained

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Having Dutch citizenship brings with it numerous benefits, including being able to live and work anywhere in the European Union without restriction, among other perks. To learn everything you need to know about how to get Dutch citizenship, check out this helpful guide.

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The Netherlands is particularly unique in that it grants citizenship to foreign-born individuals, foreigners with close ties to the Netherlands who reside abroad, and foreigners who are married to Dutch nationals. It’s important to remember that becoming a Dutch citizen is not a simple or quick procedure. To guarantee that your application is successful, you must be knowledgeable of all the procedures because the Netherlands has stringent citizenship criteria.

If you spend enough time in the Netherlands or have other reasons to stay there permanently, it’s worth the effort to apply for Dutch citizenship even though the procedure can be protracted and rather laborious. What you need to know about obtaining Dutch citizenship is provided below.

Understanding Dutch Citizenship?

Citizens of the Netherlands have certain rights, obligations, protections, and benefits as a result of their legal status as citizens. If you have Dutch citizenship, you can stay in Germany indefinitely. Regardless of the location of birth, citizenship is usually awarded to children of Dutch parents. Unless specific conditions are met, children with two foreign parents who are born in the Netherlands do not automatically gain Dutch citizenship.

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You must meet a number of prerequisites in order to become a citizen of the Netherlands. It is not always as easy as just packing up and going; many applicants are turned down because they fall short of Dutch citizenship standards. Even while obtaining Dutch citizenship can take some time, your entire family will ultimately profit. Continue reading to learn everything you need to know about how to become a Dutch citizen if you wish.

Plan appropriately because it could take several years to become a Dutch citizen. Even if you fulfill all of these conditions, you have six months to appeal the judgment if you are refused citizenship. You may then file an appeal with the court if your application is again denied. You will be qualified for full citizenship if you are awarded citizenship and stay in the country legally for five years afterward.

Types of Dutch Citizenship

There are three types of Dutch citizenship:

  • Naturalization: You have lived in the Netherlands (or the Dutch Caribbean) for an uninterrupted five-year period and you meet other conditions that are mentioned below.
  • The option procedure: If you have continuously lived in the Netherlands since birth or early childhood, or if you meet other requirements that qualify you as eligible for the option procedure.
  • By law (by birth or family relations): If you are born to a Dutch father or mother, if your Dutch father acknowledges paternity, or if you are adopted by Dutch parents then you can apply for Dutch citizenship by law.

However, the two main paths to getting Dutch citizenship are option procedure and nationalization.

Dutch Citizenship by Option Procedure

Compared to naturalization, the option process is easier and faster for obtaining Dutch citizenship. To find out if you are eligible for the process is worthwhile. Additionally, there are some benefits to applying for Dutch citizenship through this route as opposed to naturalization. They consist of:

  • there are fewer requirements to apply;
  • the process is usually quicker, taking up to three months instead of one year;
  • fees are also cheaper than the naturalization application.

However, find out whether you can get Dutch citizenship by option. You are eligible to apply for Dutch nationality with a request for an option. One of these situations applies to you:

  • You live in the Netherlands with a residence permit.
  • You live in the Netherlands or a Dutch territory as an EU national. An EU national is someone who has the nationality of an EU or EEA country or Switzerland. The application procedure for becoming a Dutch national if you live outside the Netherlands is different from the application procedure if you live in the Netherlands.
  • Moreover, you have been married to or lived with a Dutch citizen for at least three years and have lived in the Netherlands for at least 25 years.

Dutch Citizenship by Naturalization

You can naturalize to become a Dutch citizen if you reside in The Netherlands and have been a resident there for five years. You’ll need to demonstrate, among other things, that you have sufficient financial resources and health insurance. A process called naturalization makes it feasible for a non-Dutch person to acquire Dutch citizenship.

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However, if you have lawfully resided in the Netherlands for 5 years, you can naturalize to become a Dutch citizen. Applications are sent to your municipality for naturalization. The Immigratie- en Naturalisatiedienst – IND will receive the application (Immigration and Naturalization Service).

Requirements for Dutch Citizenship Through Naturalization

Furthermore, you must have a valid residence permit, but must also meet the following conditions.

  • You are more than 18 years old.
  • You have lived legally in the Netherlands or the Dutch Caribbean (Bonaire, Saint Eustatius, Saba, Aruba, Curaçao, or Saint Martin) for an uninterrupted five-year period (some exceptions apply, see below).
  • You hold a valid Dutch residence permit or a residence permit for a non-temporary purpose.
  • You can speak, read, write and understand Dutch. To prove this you must have passed the Dutch Civic Integration Exam at the A-2 level. Exceptions to this requirement are possible if you have already received an equivalent diploma such as the NT2 State Exam.
  • You have not received a prison sentence, community training, or fine of 810 euros or more in the last four years.
  • You are willing to give up your current nationality (some exceptions apply, see the section on dual nationality below). If you do not do this your new Dutch citizenship may be revoked.
  • You must attend a citizenship ceremony at which you must declare your allegiance to the Netherlands.

How to Become a Dutch Citizen Through Naturalization

The procedure for applying for Dutch citizenship is done through your local municipality, and there are up-front costs involved. Your request will be sent to the IND after the municipality has reviewed your information and received the mayor’s recommendation. The IND will then decide if you can apply for Dutch citizenship. The maximum length of the decision-making process is twelve months.

But if you reside abroad, you can apply for Dutch citizenship at a general or Dutch embassy. You can take the civic integration test at a Dutch embassy or general consulate if you want to apply for naturalization, but you must pass it first.

Moreover, the following documents will be required:

  • Passport
  • Residence permit
  • Birth certificate and those of your children (if applicable)
  • Marriage certificate (if applicable)
  • Civic integration certificate or another diploma.

What is the Cost of Becoming a Dutch Citizen?

The Netherlands has relatively low naturalization fees. Here is the cost of becoming a Dutch citizen:

Naturalization

  • Naturalization request 1 person: € 945.00
  • Naturalization request together with a partner: € 1206.00
  • ​Co-naturalize children younger than 18: €139.00
  • Request by a stateless person or asylum permit holder: €703.00
  • Request by a stateless person or permit holder asylum together with a partner:  € 965.00

Option

  • Option request 1 person: € 200.00
  • Option request together with a partner: €342.00
  • A co-opting child younger than 18: € 22.00

However, you can always check the latest fees, as application fees for Dutch citizenship are typically reviewed at the beginning of the year and/or mid-year.

Additional Notes

In addition, if your application is approved, you will have to show up at a naturalization ceremony. Once you’ve been to the ceremony, you can only apply to become a Dutch citizen. This entails signing a solidarity declaration that outlines the freedoms and privileges of Dutch citizenship as well as associated responsibilities. You must also pledge your commitment to support Dutch law by doing so in Dutch.

Furthermore, since the ceremony to become a naturalized citizen is an annual event, attendance is required. If you fail to do so, you will have to reapply for citizenship. You will get a declaration of your Dutch citizenship at the naturalization ceremony, which you can use to apply for a passport.

See Also:

Bottom Line

There is a ton of information and resources available online regarding how to apply for and obtain citizenship from another nation, but we’ve discovered that the majority of the articles either concentrate on specific European nations or general U.S. immigration. You must make direct contact with an immigration lawyer in your state or country to obtain assistance from them if you want to learn everything there is to know about becoming a citizen of the Netherlands. To learn more, visit the official website.

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