Dutch American Friendship Treaty

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What is the Dutch American Friendship Treaty (DAFT)?

DAFT is an international convention that allows for citizens of the United States to migrate to the Netherlands as an independent entrepreneur. The DAFT aims to promote the economies of both the United States of America and the Netherlands and to stimulate trade and business on a bilateral basis. Via the DAFT, self-employed U.S. citizens can make use of a rather favourable ruling to work and reside in the Netherlands.

Most Americans applying for residence permits under DAFT have little or no experience establishing a business in the Netherlands. Expatlaw specializes in DAFT applications for American citizens. We provide custom business advice for the entrepreneur regarding local conditions here.

We offer a wide range of services, including basic and full service packages, to help self-employed Americans get their DAFT residence permits and establish their business in the Netherlands. We can provide all the necessary guidance and assistance you need to meet the requirements

Who doesn’t need a Dutch permit?

If you are a citizen from the European Union (EU), European Economic Area (EEA – EU plus Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) or Switzerland you can travel freely to The Netherlands without requiring any visa or residence permit. However, you will need to register with the local authorities if you plan to stay long-term. Read more about EU/EEA/Swiss nationals moving to The Netherlands.

If you are a family member of an EU/EEA or Swiss citizen, you can also come to the Netherlands but must apply for verfication against EU law. Read about the application procedure in our guide for joining EU/EEA/Swiss family.

If you are not from the EU/EEA/Switzerland, nor a family member of someone who is, you will typically need a Dutch residence permit.

Do you need an entry permit (MVV)?

Not everyone needs an MVV in order to enter The Netherlands and apply for a Dutch residence permit.

You will need to apply for an MVV unless:

you (or a close relative) are from the EU/EEA/Switzerland;
you already hold a valid Dutch residence permit;
you already hold a ‘long-term residence permit EC’ issued by another European Community (EC) state;
you already hold a residence permit in another country that is part of the Schengen area;
you already hold a residence permit/Blue Card for 18 months in another EC state;
you are a national of Australia, Canada, Japan, Monaco, New Zealand, South Korea, the United States of America or the Vatican City;
your child (under 12) was born in The Netherlands and you have lawful residence in The Netherlands.

As mentioned above, if you do not require an MVV, you can apply for a residence permit directly, either abroad or in The Netherlands.

If you do require an MVV but don’t apply for one, and instead only apply for a residence permit, your application will be refused.

mr Gabriëlle Rothuizen LL.M.

Corporate Lawyer and legal international immigration services

E-mail:  g.rothuizen@rpslegal.nl
Tel: +31 20 697 4000


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