Highly Skilled Migrant

HMS Scheme

A possible option for obtaining a work related residence permit is through the so-called highly skilled migrant program. To be eligible for residence under this program the height of the gross monthly salary is decisive.

For the highly skilled migrant the payment of the salary must be made into a bank account in the name of the employee. Expense allowances do not count as a part of the monthly salary, unless they are guaranteed and structural. Note that wages in kind are also not included for the income standard. A year-end bonus will be included in the calculation of the level of income.

As of January 2020 the following gross monthly salaries are applicable:

  • HSM 30 years or older: €4612 gross per month
  • HSM younger than 30: €3381 gross per month excluding 8% holiday pay
  • Reduced salary requirement after Orientation year: €2423 gross per month

All mentioned amounts are excluding the mandatory 8% annual holiday pay.

Candidates, regardless of age, employed by educational or research institutions, university professors and postdocs under thirty years of age, can be regarded as a highly skilled migrant. For this group no income requirement applies.

As a general condition the IND demands that the salary offered should be market conform. In practice, this means that the IND assesses whether the level of salary similar to salaries of others in equivalent functions. If the salary offered is too high or too low, the residence permit may be refused.

The residence permit is granted in principle, for the duration of the employment contract. This may also be a period of three months or less. Persons who meet the income requirement or the qualification of PhD student or lecturer or postdoctoral researcher under the age of thirty years, may only be granted stay if the employer has been admitted into the highly skilled migrant scheme as an approved sponsor.

Enrollment as recognized sponsor

The company should have sufficient solvency to pay the salary of the highly skilled migrant if it wants to be admitted into the highly skilled migrant scheme. Furthermore, it is checked whether the company has a history of good payment behavior with the tax authorities. It is furthermore checked whether the company has been found guilty of employing aliens who are not allowed to work and who have been fined for this.

New companies without a fiscal past can only be admitted to the highly skilled migrant scheme if it can be shown that the continuity of the business is assured. A business plan will need to be submitted to the National Service of Entrepreneurial Netherlands (part of the Ministry of Economic Affairs) for review.

The costs of the application of the company to be registered in the highly skilled migrant scheme amounts as of May 3rd 2018 €3.927. The application fee for recognized sponsorship for Start-ups and for smaller companies with less than 50 employees is lower €1.963 . Keep in mind admission into the highly skilled migrant scheme is not yet secured. This is just the rate for the handling of the application. It is therefore recommended to check that all the conditions are met before submitting the application.

If you or your business is interested in employing highly skilled migrants, our firm can handle this for you. As well as handling the enrolment procedure for recognized sponsorship we can handle all the residence applications for the highly skilled migrants and their family members.

For questions about the highly skilled migrant program and what Alt Attorneys can do for you please email us (info@altadvocaten.nl) or call us at 020 616 14 87. We are happy to help!


Barentszplein 2F
1013 NJ Amsterdam

Contact details

Telephone: 020 616 14 87,
Fax: 020 616 46 29

Office hours:

09:30 – 12:00 hrs and 13:00 – 17:00 hrs

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