Update 30 percent ruling Netherlands 2015

The last time the 30 percent ruling in the Netherlands was thoroughly revised was in 2012. The main changes considered the maximum period of 8 years instead of 10 years.

Also expats have to have lived further than 150 kilometers away from the Dutch border during more than 16 months before their employment in Holland to qualify for the 30 percent ruling. Besides these alterations there is the change in the criterion. Before it was called the specific knowledge criterion, now it is basically a salary criterion, indicating that employees from abroad that have specific knowledge earn more. An exeption is made for younger persons with a master degree and those that receive their PhD in the Netherlands.

The past years these changes have raised many questions, especially the 150 kilometer rule. Especially if someone has had to move more than 150 kilometers it can be confusing if the application is denied. The Tax authorities are strict in applying the rule, 1 kilometer can make the difference. It could also be that you have moved 280 kilometers from Cologne (Köln) to The Hague, but do not apply for the 30 percent ruling because Cologne is less then 150 kilometers from the Dutch border.

The fact that you have to have lived abroad for 16 months raises a lot of questions. What if you have worked in a different job before in which the 30% ruling applied? What if you were travelling and it is not sure where your center of life was? Answers to these questions are sometimes hard to find and qualified tax advice is required.

Salary criterion

With the salary criterion it is crucial that the qualifying salary of € 36.705,– or more (in 2015) is the taxable salary after the 30%-ruling has been applied.  Make sure your employer or payroll agency applies the 30%-ruling correctly. We offer second opinion advice when your apllication is denied or when you have doubts about the procedure being correct or not. You cab also contact us if you want to know more about the 16 month period that you have to have lived abroad, since this often raises a lot of questions.

In case of unemployment

Last but not least we want to highlight that, if unfortunately this situation occurs,  you need to make sure that you are not unemployed for longer than 3 months in between jobs. If you exceed this period you will loose your eligibility for the 30% ruling in the new job.


As an expat and business owner, my income taxes can get pretty complicated. But thanks to the folks at J.C. Suurmond & zn., I don’t have to worry about getting things wrong or forgetting obscure tax rules. It’s great to feel like I have someone on my side dealing with the Dutch tax authorities. They’ve handled my taxes for years, and I hope they will for years to come. Thanks 🙏🏼”

– Brian Pagán-


“Work in the US, through secondment by a Dutch research institute. Sander was able to advise me on avoiding double taxation and other tricky questions, and help with filing taxes in NL during the last two tax seasons. Professional and prompt responses, can certainly recommend!”

– Roelof Smit –


“They are very helpful and responsive in the times of need. Good and clear communication of right information.”

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Who are Suurmond Tax Consultants

Since 1986 expat and business tax advice in relation to the Netherlands is one of our areas if expertise we provide to our individual and/ or business clients.

In addition, we can also assist in a variety of other cross-border situations. We will ensure you are compliant as well and that you pay no more tax than needed. Examples include advising clients as to starting a business in The Netherlands, accounting, property tax, and amnesty ruling. We file all types of  tax returns and specialise for example in the 30% ruling and 183-days rule consequences. The value we can add with our fiscal advice, is a key focus point to us. Also, what should not be overlooked, is the fact that a correct tax return will prevent future issues and penalties. This is essential when moving to a new country, or when setting up a business in a new country. 

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J.C. Suurmond & zn. Tax Consultants
Zwarte Zee 100
3144 DE Maassluis
T: +31 (0)10-3033701
E: taxadvice@jcsuurmond.nl


General information

CoC register: 27224918
VAT: NL 8016.36.668.B.01
Tax consultant number: 330826