• Minimum Salary Thresholds for Highly Skilled Workers Now Calculated Without Including Holiday Allowances
  • April 8, 2015
  • Law Firm: Fragomen Del Rey Bernsen Loewy LLP - New York Office
  • Holiday allowance payments are now excluded from the Knowledge Migrant (Kennismigranten) program’s minimum salary requirements, the Dutch Immigration and Naturalization Service (IND) recently clarified. For employers of non-EEA nationals in the Knowledge Migrant program - used by highly skilled foreign workers - the practical effect of this policy change is slightly lower salary requirements as follows:
    • Applicants under 30 years of age must evidence a valid offer of employment and a monthly gross starting salary of at least €3,071 (approximately $3,480).
    • Applicants 30 years of age and older must evidence a valid offer of employment and a monthly gross starting salary of at least €4,189 (approximately $4,750).
    • Foreign graduates of a Dutch institution of higher education taking advantage of the program’s one-year search period to find employment must evidence a valid offer of employment and a monthly gross starting salary of at least €2,201 (approximately $2,495).
    As previously reported, the Netherlands increased the salary threshold for the Knowledge Migrant program on January 1. At the time, the IND’s online guidance suggested that the salary thresholds included holiday allowance payments made to Knowledge Migrants. However, following discussions with Fragomen, the IND has clarified its salary policies and expressly stated that employers must meet the salary thresholds excluding any holiday allowance payments.

    Benefits and other allowances may be counted towards the salary requirements under certain conditions.

    What This Means for Employers and Foreign Nationals

    The policy change also serves as a reminder that the IND’s internal policies for processing Knowledge Migrant applications are subject to change with little or no advance notice. Fragomen strongly recommends that those planning to apply for Knowledge Migrant work authorization review with their Dutch immigration professional the new minimum salary requirements and overall application requirements and related processing times prior to filing.