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Procedure for Non-EU Citizens

Procedure for Non-EU citizens

In order to make use of the streamlined formality procedures of the International Welcome Center North, the employer must be registered as a recognized sponsor with the IND (Immigration Service). Furthermore, the highly skilled employee must live in – or work for a company located in – one of the eleven municipalities participating in the IWCN (Groningen, Assen, Leeuwarden, Heerenveen, Smallingerland (Drachten), Ten Boer, Hoogezand-Sappemeer, Eemsmond, Emmen, Veendam, and Noordenveld).

Prior to the appointment

  • Please take into consideration that the IWCN charges fees for their services.
  • The employer or authorized organization should download the applicable IND form. Please note: there are separate forms for highly skilled employees, scientific researchers, and immediate family members. For more information, please see this link on the IND site.
  • The employer or authorized organization should complete the form and select the appropriate procedure. Make sure the direct debit form and the antecedents certificate have been signed and copies of all the necessary documents have been attached.
  • Select “Groningen” under the location of the Expatcenter where the residence document will be collected on the application form.
  • Send the completed application for a highly-skilled migrant along with the requested appendices to the IND at the following address (NEW Postbus address from 1 February 2017:

Immigratie- en Naturalisatiedienst
Postbus 5
9560 AA Ter Apel

  • The IND will send a confirmation letter to the employer or authorized organization once the completed application has been received. If the application is incomplete, the IND will indicate which items are missing and are required for re-submission.
  • As soon as the IND makes a positive decision about the application, the IWCN will contact the employer or authorized organization to make an appointment for the employee and, if applicable, his or her family members. If the employer or authorized organization receives a positive decision but has not been contacted by the IWCN within 3 days, the employer should contact the IWCN. Please send an email to formalities@iwcn.nl and include your name, email address, company and short message and we will contact you. The appointment should take place before the start date of the work contract.
  • The employer or authorized organization will receive an email from the IWCN concerning the appointment, which should be forwarded to the employee to bring to the appointment. The email will contain a list of all of the required documents necessary for the procedures at the IWCN (valid passports or country IDs; color copies (if possible) of birth, marriage, and divorce certificates with the appropriate legalizations and translations, if required), and proof of address in the Netherlands.
  • Electronic copies of all the required documents must be emailed to formalities@iwcn.nl well before the appointment.
  • An invoice for the fees (if applicable) will also be posted to the responsible party. The fees should be paid by bank transfer.
  • NOTE: ALL OF THE REQUIRED DOCUMENTS NEED TO BE COMPLETE, CORRECT, and DELIVERED ON TIME IN ORDER TO USE THE ACCELERATED FORMALITIES SERVICES AT THE IWCN.

During the IWCN appointment

The visit will involve meeting an IND representative and a representative from the local Municipality. The employee (and applicable family members) must bring the following documents with them to the appointment: appointment confirmation letter and originals of all the required documents.

  • If biometric data (fingerprints and photographs) were taken at the Dutch consulate where the applicant collected his or her MVV entry visa (if required), then the applicant will receive his or her residence document at the IWCN.
  • If no biometrics were taken previously, or if an MVV entry visa was not required, then biometric data will be taken during the appointment at the IWCN. It will take the IND about a week to prepare the residence card. Until that time, a sticker will be placed in the employee’s passport, allowing them to start work immediately. The employee will be notified when the card is ready to collect. The residence card must be collected in person by appointment on Tuesdays or Thursdays (13:00 to 16:00 hours).
  • After finishing with the IND representative, the employee will meet with a representative of the local Municipality to register in their database and be issued a BSN (personal public service number for the Netherlands).
  • The employee will immediately be issued a BSN during the appointment if they live in or will temporarily register at the address of a company located in Groningen. It can take up to three days to receive a BSN by post if the employee lives in – or will register temporarily at the address of a company located in – one of the other participating municipalities (Assen, Leeuwarden, Heerenveen, Smallingerland (Drachten), Ten Boer, Hoogezand/Sappemeer, Eemsmond, Emmen, Veendam, and Noordenveld).
  • Following the appointment, the employee (and applicable family members) will have the opportunity to ask the IWCN staff any other questions they may have about living in the Northern Netherlands. They can receive referrals for services and be able to obtain information on other practical matters. In addition, the employee will have the opportunity to start building a social network by participating in events and activities organized by the IWCN.

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