FREELANCING IN THE NETHERLANDS
Freelancers, in Dutch known as ZZP’ers, are self-employed expats or Dutch entrepreneurs who are not committed to an employer by an employment contract.
WHAT TO KNOW WHEN FREELANCING IN THE NETHERLANDS
Freelancers often prefer their employment situation because of the flexibility and the opportunity to work for and from wherever they prefer. However, there are a few administrative requirements that you must keep in mind when working as a freelancer.
Before anything, make sure you have a valid residence permit which makes it possible for you to live and work in the Netherlands. Also, you must register your business with the Dutch Chamber of Commerce. Because being a freelancer is no official legal business form in the Netherlands, you must choose a legal form closest to your preferences. The most used business form is an eenmanszaak (sole trader, known as a one-person business). If you have investors or a bigger turnover, you might find the BV better suited for you.
VAT FOR FREELANCERS IN THE NETHERLANDS
When you register your business with the Dutch Chamber of Commerce (KvK), you will also be registered with the Dutch tax office, which automatically issues your company with a VAT number. In the Netherlands, all products and services are filed with VAT, which is a standard of 21%. There are some exemptions to this 21% VAT.
For freelancers, there are a few things to keep in mind concerning VAT.
- When invoicing your clients for your services or products, you must add an additional 21% VAT on top of the regular price. Remember to set this money aside, as you will need to pay this to the tax office in the next (few) month.
- You are allowed to deduct the VAT from business-related expenses such as education, materials and even the costs for workspace
- When eligible for the small business scheme, when collecting under €1.883 VAT per year, you will pay less or no VAT at all for the Dutch tax office.
- If you do not submit the VAT declaration on time, you will receive a fine.
ADMINISTRATION FOR FREELANCERS IN THE NETHERLANDS
Having your administration up to date is important for freelancers, as you are required to not just keep up with your invoices and bills, but you must also record the number of hours worked. Keeping track of your hours is important because it might make you eligible for tax breaks. From a minimum of 1.225 hours a year, you are eligible for the ‘zelfstandigenaftrek’.