|New restrictions for family reunification|
The Netherlands is going to restrict the possibilities for family reunification on various points. Only those who are married or are registered partners and minor children will be eligible for family reunification. This means that the other family members, such as unmarried partners and adult children will no longer qualify for a residence permit.
Partners of the same-sex or different religions that are not allowed to marry in their country of origin due to legal impediments may obtain a temporary marriage licence in order to marry or become registered partners.
Another restriction will be the introduction of a waiting period: the sponsor will only be allowed to have the family member join him/her, after one year of legal residency in the Netherlands.
Finally, the family member will qualify for an independent residence permit for extended residency only after five years instead of three.
For these amendments see the letter from the Minister dated 17 February 2012.