This website uses Cookies

We use cookies for necessary website functionalities, for social media functionalities and for webiste statistics and analysis. More information can be found in our privacy policy.

I agree with the use of cookies for:

Necessary functionalities and anonymous statistics
areas of expertise

There are 3 ways to obtain Dutch nationality: through naturalization, through an option procedure or through birth from a Dutch father or mother.

The Dutch Citizenship Act is complicated; whether and how you may acquire Dutch nationality is different in each individual case. Many rules and exceptions must be taken into account. Our nationality desk lawyers are experts in matters like naturalization, dual nationality and option procedures. They can advise you, assist with the application for Dutch citizenship or represent you during an objection appeal or confirmation procedure.

To diplomats, employees at a consulate or at an international organization (summarized as the privileged) other rules apply.  

1 - Naturalization

The following conditions apply to naturalization:

  • main residency in the Netherlands for a minimum of 5 consecutive years, with a valid residence permit
  • renunciation of other nationalities, unless this is not possible
  • civic integration diploma
  • a valid passport
  • a valid birth certificate
  • no criminal convictions
  • at least 18 years of age

Naturalization term and residence permit

The 5-year naturalization term entails that you had your main residency in the Netherlands at any moment during the 5-year period. It also means you have always renewed your residence permit on time, so there are no gaps in between permits.
Your residence permit must be for a non-temporary purpose at the time of your naturalization application. It must remain valid throughout the whole procedure (this can be more than a year).

Shorter naturalization term

In certain cases, the naturalization term is reduced. The following situations may apply:

  • Are you the partner of a Dutch citizen, married or unmarried? You may apply for naturalization after 3 years of living together in the Netherlands, continuously and legally
  • Are you married or have a registered partnership with a Dutch national? You may apply for naturalization after 3 years of living together continuously, in the Netherlands or abroad. In this case, you can choose to apply from abroad, as long as this is not the country of your nationality.
  • Have you lived in the Netherlands for 10 years with a valid residence permit? You may apply for naturalization after 2 years of continuous residence.
  • Are you officially stateless? You may apply for naturalization after 3 years of residence in the Netherlands



2 - Dutch citizenship by option

Dutch nationality can also be acquired through the option procedure. You may be eligible for this procedure if you have a ‘special connection’ to the Netherlands, for instance if you are:

  • a former Dutch citizen, living in the Netherlands for at least 1 year with a valid residence permit of indefinite stay, or definite stay but with a non-temporary purpose
  • a latent Dutch citizen*

The option procedure is faster and less expensive than naturalization. A civic integration exam is not required and in most cases, you do not need to renounce your current nationality.

3 - Dutch citizenship by birth

A child obtains Dutch nationality by birth if one of its parents is Dutch, no matter where it is born. This birthright also applies when a child is born from a single Dutch mother.
If a child is born out of wedlock from a Dutch father and a non-Dutch mother, assessment is needed to determine whether the child has Dutch citizenship or how it could obtain a Dutch passport.

Latent Dutch citizens

You have a Dutch mother, but you are not a Dutch national. This may very well be the case if you were born before 1 January 1985 from a Dutch mother and a non-Dutch father. This means you are a so-called latent Dutch. To obtain Dutch citizenship next to your current nationality you may use the option procedure.

Everaert Advocaten Immigration Lawyers was a founding father of the ‘Latent-Dutch Regulation’. We can tell you all about it and of course, we will be happy to assist you in any procedure becoming a Dutch national!

For more information, please contact Hermie de Voer, Bram van Melle, Vera KidjanElles Besselsen or Mirjam den Besten


Pardon permit holders to get Dutch passport at last

On July 7th 2021, it was announced that the 10.000 ‘pardon’ permit holders and their children will be exempted from the document requirement and will finally be able to obtain Dutch citizenship. This is fantastic news for all the participants in our project ‘Naturalization without documents’ that Everaert Advocaten started in 2019.

Read more ...

Policy change announced regarding naturalization of RANOV permit holders

On April 20th, a majority of the Dutch Parliament once again voted in favor of a motion to exempt RANOV permit holders from the requirement to provide a passport and birth certificate when filing a naturalization request. The government was asked to implement this motion without waiting for the research of the Research and Documentation Center (WODC).

Read more ...

Further investigation into naturalization of RANOV permit holders

After a majority of the Parliament voted in favor of the motion on February 9, 2021 to exempt RANOV permit holders from the requirement to provide a passport and a birth certificate when filing a naturalization application, State Secretary Broekers-Knol stands by her policy.

Read more ...

Vera Kidjan on NOS Radio 1 News about 'pardon' permit holders

Vera Kidjan represents about 500 persons who received a 'pardon' permit in the past, but 13 years later still cannot obtain Dutch citizenship. In total, about 10.000 people are in this same situation. 

Read more ...

Dutch parliament supports motion to allow naturalization for RANOV permit holders

A majority of the Dutch Parliament voted on Tuesday 9 February in favour of the motion to exempt RANOV permit holders from the requirement to provide a passport and a birth certificate when filing a naturalization application.

Read more ...

Parliamentary majority wants to accommodate naturalization of pardon permit holders

This week, two Dutch political parties (SP and CDA) intend to file a motion to pave the way for about 10.000 pardon permit holders to obtain Dutch citizenship. A majority of the parliament is in favor of this initiative.

Read more ...

Dutch naturalization impossible without documents

The topic of this headline received renewed attention from the public and politicians in recent weeks, since Ethiopian born, but Dutch raised, Yosef Tekeste-Yamane made his appearance in the media. 

Read more ...