Reviews 4,000+ verified REVIEWS
Pricing plans
Compare all plans
Tax guide
Pricing plans
Compare all plans
Tax Guide
All articles

Tax guide for Americans in Netherlands

Tax guide for Americans in Netherlands

The Netherlands, with its picturesque canals, historic cities, and vibrant culture, has become a popular destination for American expatriates seeking new opportunities and experiences. However, relocating to a new country also brings with it the need to understand and navigate the local tax system.

Table of contents

  1. Resident vs. non-resident of Netherlands
  2. Who can be considered a resident of the Netherlands
  3. Types of taxation in the Netherlands
  4. Types of income in the Netherlands
  5. Deductions and credits for expats in the Netherlands
  6. Social security in the Netherlands
  7. Dutch pension system
  8. Filing income tax returns in the Netherlands
  9. Tax treaty between the US and Netherlands
  10. Most popular tax Forms for US expats
  11. When are Netherlands taxes due?
  12. Dutch tax forms for US expats

Resident vs. non-resident of Netherlands

The Dutch tax system classifies individuals into two main categories: residents and non-residents, each with different tax implications.

  • Resident taxpayers

    Residents of the Netherlands are subject to tax on their worldwide income, which includes earnings from employment, business activities, and investments, regardless of where the income is generated.
  • Non-resident taxpayers

    Non-residents, on the other hand, are only taxed on specific sources of income derived from the Netherlands. This might include income from employment or business activities conducted within the country or income from Dutch real estate.

    Non-residents are not subject to tax on their global income, providing potential tax savings for those who qualify.

Who can be considered a resident of the Netherlands

Determining residency status is crucial as it dictates the extent of an individual’s tax obligations in the Netherlands. The Dutch tax authorities consider several factors to establish residency:

  • Duration of stay

    Individuals who spend a significant amount of time in the Netherlands, typically more than 183 days in a calendar year, are likely to be considered tax residents.
  • Permanent home

    Having a permanent home in the Netherlands, whether owned or rented, is a strong indicator of residency.
  • Center of personal and economic interests

    If an individual’s primary social, family, and economic ties are in the Netherlands, they are likely to be deemed a resident for tax purposes.
  • Registered at the local municipality

    Individuals who are officially registered at a Dutch address with the local municipality are generally considered residents.
  • Intentions and future plans

    The intentions and future plans of an individual, such as plans to stay in the Netherlands long-term, can also influence residency status.

Types of taxation in the Netherlands

The Netherlands has a comprehensive and progressive tax system, ensuring that individuals contribute to the country's welfare and infrastructure. One of the key components of this system is personal income tax, which is levied on various types of income.

Personal income tax rates

Personal income tax in the Netherlands is progressive, meaning that higher income levels are subject to higher tax rates. The system is designed to be equitable, ensuring that those with greater financial means contribute a larger share of their income.

The Dutch tax system uses a "box" system, dividing income into three categories, each taxed differently:

Box 1: Income from employment and home ownership, taxed at progressive rates.
Rates for box 1 (2023)

Taxable income (€) Tax rate (%)
0-37,149* 9.28
37,149-73,031 36.93
73,031 and above 49.50

*National insurance tax is levied at a rate of 27.65%.

Box 2: Income from a substantial interest in a company, taxed at a flat rate (26.9%).

Income from Box 3, which is assumed to be derived from savings and investments, is subject to a uniform tax rate of 32%.


By 2024, the tax rate for Box 2 will undergo modifications, incorporating two new tiers: a standard rate of 24.5% applicable to the initial EUR 67,000 of income per individual, and a 31% rate for any income exceeding that amount.

Consumption tax

Consumption tax, also known as Value Added Tax (VAT), is a tax on goods and services in the Netherlands. It is applied at each stage of the production and distribution process and is ultimately borne by the final consumer.

The standard VAT rate in the Netherlands is 21%, applicable to most goods and services. However, a reduced rate of 9% applies to certain essential goods and services, such as food, books, and medicines.

Some items, like educational services and healthcare, are exempt from VAT.

Net wealth tax

The Netherlands imposes a tax on an individual's net wealth, also known as the Box 3 tax. This tax is applied to the value of an individual's savings, investments, and certain types of property, minus any associated debts.

The tax is calculated based on a deemed return on investment, with progressive rates applied to different bands of net wealth.

Property tax

Property tax in the Netherlands is levied by local municipalities on property owners. The tax is based on the deemed rental value of the property (WOZ value) and the tax rate set by the municipality.

Property tax rates vary across different municipalities, and the tax is used to fund local services and infrastructure.

Excise tax

Excise tax is applied to products such as tobacco, alcohol, and fuel. The rates vary depending on the product type and quantity.

For example, higher excise duties are imposed on cigarettes and alcoholic beverages compared to other goods. This tax is usually included in the retail price of the product, making it transparent to the consumer.

Luxury tax

Luxury tax in the Netherlands is applied to high-end goods such as expensive cars and yachts.

Transfer tax

Transfer tax is levied on the transfer of real estate located in the Netherlands. The tax is applicable whether the property is bought or received as a gift.

The standard rate for transfer tax is 2% of the property’s value, but a higher rate may apply for certain types of real estate, such as commercial properties

Insurance tax

Insurance tax in the Netherlands is applied to premiums paid for most types of insurance, including property, liability, and vehicle insurance.

The standard rate is 21%, and it is typically included in the insurance premium quoted by the provider.

Gift tax

Gift tax in the Netherlands is applied to gifts received, with the rate depending on the value of the gift and the relationship between the giver and the recipient.


The enhanced gift exemption, which in 2022 stood at EUR 106,671 for gifts used towards owner-occupied homes, is scheduled to be discontinued starting from the year 2024. Leading up to this change, the exemption amount has already seen a reduction, bringing it down to EUR 28,947 as of 1 January 2023.

Road tax

Road tax, also known as motor vehicle tax or road user charge, is a mandatory tax for vehicle owners in the Netherlands. The amount of road tax you pay depends on various factors including the type of vehicle, its weight, fuel type, and the province you live in.

Electric vehicles are typically exempt from road tax, aligning with the country's environmental policies.

Inheritance tax

Inheritance tax in the Netherlands is levied on assets received from a deceased person’s estate. The rate of inheritance tax depends on the relationship between the deceased and the beneficiary, as well as the value of the inheritance.

Spouses and children are subject to lower rates compared to distant relatives or unrelated beneficiaries. There are also exemptions and thresholds in place, potentially reducing the tax liability.

Estate tax

The Netherlands does not impose a separate estate tax. Instead, inheritance tax serves as the primary means of taxing wealth transferred upon death.

Unsure of every piece to be filed?
Get a free consultation with a tax pro!

Schedule my consultation

Types of income in the Netherlands

The Netherlands has a comprehensive system for taxing various types of income, ensuring that all residents and non-residents earning income within the country are subject to taxation.

Employment income

Employment income is one of the most common types of income and includes wages, salaries, bonuses, and any other compensation received for services rendered. This income is subject to progressive tax rates, and employers typically withhold tax and social security contributions from employees’ paychecks.

  • Reimbursements and benefits in kind

    In addition to regular wages, employees may receive reimbursements for expenses related to their employment, such as travel or relocation expenses. These reimbursements are generally tax-free, provided they are reasonable and necessary for the job. Benefits in kind, such as company cars or housing allowances, are considered taxable income but may be partially exempt under specific conditions.
  • Lucrative investment

    Lucrative investments refer to certain types of compensation that are closely tied to the performance of the company, such as stock options or profit-sharing plans. The tax treatment of these forms of income can be complex and depends on the specific terms and conditions of the investment.
  • Non-resident employees

    Non-resident employees working in the Netherlands are subject to Dutch income tax on their Dutch-sourced income. However, they may be eligible for certain tax benefits, such as the 30% ruling, which allows a portion of their income to be tax-free. The specific tax obligations and benefits for non-resident employees depend on their individual circumstances and any applicable tax treaties.

Equity compensation

Equity compensation refers to non-cash pay that is offered to employees, including stock options, restricted stock, and performance shares. In the Netherlands, these forms of compensation are subject to tax, and the specific tax treatment depends on the type of equity compensation and the timing of the income realization.

For stock options, the taxable event typically occurs when the options are exercised. The taxable amount is the difference between the market value of the shares at the time of exercise and the exercise price.

Restricted stock and performance shares are generally taxed when they vest, based on their market value at that time.

Capital gains

The Netherlands has a unique approach to taxing capital gains. For individuals, capital gains from the sale of personal assets (including investments) are generally not subject to tax.

However, there are exceptions, such as when the gains are derived from speculative transactions or from the sale of real estate in certain circumstances.

For investments, the Dutch tax system employs a deemed return on investment approach, where individuals are taxed on a notional return on their total net assets rather than the actual gains or losses realized. This deemed return is subject to progressive tax rates.

Dividend income

Dividend income received by individuals in the Netherlands is subject to income tax. However, a tax credit for Dutch dividend withholding tax may be available, potentially reducing the tax liability.

Interest income

In the Netherlands, individuals who possess a substantial interest in a company are subject to specific tax regulations. A substantial interest is defined as owning, either solely or in conjunction with a spouse or close relatives, a minimum of 5% of a company's shares, a specific class of shares, or rights to acquire a 5% interest in a company.

The income derived from this substantial interest, such as dividends and gains from the sale of shares or rights, is taxable under box 2 of the Dutch tax system. For the year 2023, the tax rate for box 2 is set at 26.9%.

Non-resident taxpayers are only subject to box 2 taxation if they hold a substantial interest in a company based in the Netherlands.

Rental income

Rental income derived from Dutch properties is generally not taxed as income in the Netherlands. Instead, the property itself is subject to taxation in Box 3 (savings and investments) of the Dutch tax system.

The value of the property, minus any related debts, is included in the calculation of the notional return on savings and investments, which is then taxed at the 31% rate.

However, if rental activities are extensive and conducted with the intention of making a profit, the Dutch tax authorities might classify the activities as a business, resulting in the rental income being taxed in Box 1 (income from work and home) at progressive tax rates.

Never had a pro tax help before?
Check out how it works!

See the process

Deductions and credits for expats in the Netherlands

The Dutch tax system provides various deductions and credits that can benefit expats, potentially reducing their tax liability.

Employment expenses

In the Netherlands, employees are entitled to deduct certain employment-related expenses from their taxable income. These expenses must be necessary for the performance of employment duties and not reimbursed by the employer. Common deductible employment expenses include costs related to work-related travel, professional education, and necessary tools or equipment.

  • Extra-territorial costs

    Extra-territorial costs are expenses that employees incur when working outside their home country. For American expats in the Netherlands, these could include costs related to relocation, living in a more expensive area, or travel back to the United States. The Dutch tax system acknowledges these additional burdens and provides avenues for relief.
  • 30% ruling

    One of the most significant tax advantages for expats in the Netherlands is the 30% ruling. This scheme allows employers to grant a tax-free allowance equivalent to 30% of an employee’s gross salary, intended to cover extra-territorial costs.

To qualify, employees must meet specific criteria, including having skills or expertise considered rare in the Dutch labor market.

Personal deductions

  1. Alimony

    If you are making alimony payments, these can be deductible from your taxable income in the Netherlands. It’s important to keep detailed records of these payments, as the Dutch tax authorities may require proof of payment and the legal obligation to make these payments.
  2. Charitable contributions

    Donations made to registered charities in the Netherlands can be tax-deductible. However, there are specific conditions that must be met, including the requirement that the charity is registered as an "ANBI" (Algemeen Nut Beogende Instelling) or an "SBBI" (Sociaal Belang Behartigende Instelling). The amount of the deduction may also depend on your income level and the size of the donation.
  3. Education expenses and the STAP-budget

    While direct deductions for education expenses are no longer available, the Dutch government has introduced the STAP budget (Stimulering Arbeidsmarkt Positie). This is a subsidy that can be used for professional training and development. Eligible individuals can apply for up to €1,000 per year to cover the costs of approved courses and training programs.
  4. Medical and disability expenses

    Certain medical and disability-related expenses that are not covered by health insurance can be deductible. This includes expenses related to medical care, prescribed medications, and necessary modifications to your home due to a disability. Proper documentation and receipts are crucial to claim these deductions.
  5. Life insurance premiums

    Premiums paid for certain life insurance policies may be deductible, particularly if the policy is linked to your mortgage. However, the rules surrounding this deduction are complex, and it’s advisable to seek professional tax advice to understand your eligibility and the potential benefits.
  6. Mortgage interest expenses

    One of the significant deductions available to homeowners in the Netherlands is mortgage interest deduction. If you have a mortgage on your primary residence, the interest payments on that mortgage can be deductible from your taxable income, potentially resulting in substantial tax savings.

Personal tax credits

Tax credits in the Netherlands directly reduce the amount of tax you owe. There are various tax credits available, and your eligibility depends on your personal situation. Some of the common tax credits include:

  • General tax credit: This is a basic tax credit available to everyone, though the amount decreases as your income increases.
  • Labour tax credit: Specifically designed for those who are employed, the amount of this credit depends on your income and working hours.
  • Young disabled persons tax credit: For young individuals with a disability and who are working.
  • Single parent tax credit: For single parents meeting specific criteria.

Levy rebates

Levy rebates are specific reductions on the national insurance contributions part of your tax liability. The most common levy rebate is the “General Levy Rebate” (Algemene heffingskorting), which is available to everyone, though the amount decreases for higher incomes.

There is also an “Employed Person’s Tax Credit” (Arbeidskorting), which applies to employed individuals and self-employed professionals.

Social security in the Netherlands

The Netherlands has a comprehensive social security system, designed to provide support in cases of unemployment, illness, disability, and old age. Participation in this system is mandatory for residents and employees in the country, and it is funded through various taxes and contributions.

  1. National Insurance Tax

    The national insurance tax in the Netherlands covers old age pensions, survivor benefits (Anw), and long-term care (Wlz). All residents and employees in the Netherlands are required to contribute to these programs. The contributions are calculated as a percentage of taxable income, up to a certain maximum, and are withheld from salaries by employers.
  2. Employee Insurance Contributions

    In addition to national insurance, employees in the Netherlands are also required to contribute to employee insurance programs, which provide benefits in case of unemployment (WW), sickness (ZW), and disability (WIA). These contributions are also withheld from salaries by employers.

    The rates for these contributions vary depending on the individual’s salary and the sector of employment.
  3. Dutch Health Insurance Act (Zvw)

    The Dutch Health Insurance Act mandates that all residents and employees in the Netherlands have health insurance. The cost of this insurance is partially covered by a nominal premium paid by the insured to the insurance company, and partially by an income-related contribution, which is withheld by the employer or paid directly by the individual in case of self-employment.

Dutch pension system

The Dutch pension system is renowned for its robustness and is structured in three pillars:

  1. State pension (AOW): This is a basic pension provided by the Dutch government to individuals who have reached the state pension age. The amount received depends on the number of years the individual has lived or worked in the Netherlands, aiming to provide a basic standard of living.
  2. Employer pension: This is a supplementary pension arranged by employers. Participation is usually mandatory if the employer offers a pension scheme. The contributions are typically shared between the employer and the employee.
  3. Private pension: Individuals can choose to contribute to a private pension plan to supplement their retirement income. This is a voluntary option and can provide additional security for retirement.

Filing income tax returns in the Netherlands

As a resident or non-resident taxpayer in the Netherlands, you are required to file an annual income tax return.

The Dutch tax year aligns with the calendar year, and tax returns should typically be filed before May 1st of the following year. Here are some key points to consider:

  1. Online filing: The Dutch tax authorities encourage electronic filing through their online portal. To access this service, you will need a DigiD (Digital Identification).
  2. Required documentation: Ensure you have all necessary documents, including your annual income statement, details of any deductible items, and information on assets and liabilities.
  3. Provisional assessment: If you expect a refund due to deductible items such as mortgage interest, you can apply for a provisional assessment to receive monthly refunds.

Tax treaty between the US and Netherlands

The United States and the Netherlands have a tax treaty in place to prevent double taxation and reduce tax evasion. Key aspects of the treaty include:

  • Residence: The treaty defines how residency is determined for tax purposes, helping to clarify your tax obligations in each country.
  • Tax credits: The treaty allows for the offset of taxes paid in one country against the tax liability in the other, potentially reducing your overall tax burden.
  • Pensions and social security: Special provisions exist for pensions and social security payments, ensuring that these are taxed fairly and consistently.
  • Information exchange: The two countries have agreed to exchange tax information, enhancing transparency and aiding in the enforcement of tax laws.

Most popular tax Forms for US expats

As a US citizen or resident alien living abroad, you are required to file US taxes on your worldwide income. Here are some of the most important tax forms you might need:

  1. Form 1040: The standard US individual income tax return.
  2. Form 2555 or 2555-EZ: Used to claim the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion, which allows you to exclude a certain amount of your foreign earnings from US tax.
  3. Form 1116: Used to claim the Foreign Tax Credit, which can reduce your US tax liability based on the taxes you pay to a foreign country.
  4. Form 8938: Required if you have certain foreign financial assets that exceed specific thresholds.
  5. FBAR (FinCEN Form 114): Required if you have financial interests in or signature authority over foreign financial accounts and the aggregate value of those accounts exceeds $10,000 at any time during the calendar year.

When are Netherlands taxes due?

In the Netherlands, the tax year is the same as the calendar year, and the deadline for submitting your income tax return is April 30 of the following year. If you are unable to file by this date, you can request an extension.

However, it’s important to note that if you owe taxes, interest may start accruing after the April 30th deadline, even if an extension is granted.

Dutch tax forms for US expats

As a US expat in the Netherlands, you will also need to comply with Dutch tax regulations. Here are some of the key Dutch tax forms you might encounter:

  1. Form P: The standard income tax return form for residents of the Netherlands.
  2. Form M: Used by individuals who have immigrated to or emigrated from the Netherlands within the tax year.
  3. Form C: For non-residents with Dutch income.