• Business Visitors Eligible for Multiple Visits
  • August 17, 2015
  • Law Firm: Fragomen Del Rey Bernsen Loewy LLP - New York Office
  • An amendment now allows business visitors to conduct business meetings in the Netherlands without a work permit during multiple visits of up to 13 weeks cumulatively in a 52-week period. The prior rule - which allowed a cumulative stay of four weeks in one 13-week period for permissible activities - no longer applies to any business activities in the Netherlands.

    This amendment, which effectively allows eligible business visitors to stay up to 13 weeks in one year, is the result of the Dutch government’s effort to promote international trade and to align the law more closely with bilateral international agreements and with the Schengen rules, which limit stays up to 90 days in a 180-day period in the Schengen Area.

    Business visitors conducting other work permit-waived activities, such as certain installation and repair activities or receiving training on Dutch equipment/software, are still work permit-exempt for one visit of up to twelve consecutive weeks in a 36-week period.

    Background

    Prior to January 2014, business visitors could enter multiple times and perform permissible business visitor activities without Dutch work authorization for up to four weeks in a 13-week period. In January 2014, new rules were implemented that implied that only one visit for up to 13 consecutive weeks was allowed within a 52-week period. Since this was not the intent of the change, the authorities reverted to the pre-January rule until the law was amended. Now the law clarifies that multiple visits are allowed.

    Business visitors to the Netherlands are generally limited to conducting business meetings in which information is exchanged on behalf of the home employer. Any other activities generally require work authorization.

    What This Means for Foreign Nationals

    Business visitors conducting business meetings should benefit from the ability to enter the Netherlands multiple times. Business visitors to the Netherlands should abide by the Schengen stay limit as well.