The game of Red Tape Limbo

If you want to find out how to register correctly and efficiently don’t call the IND or your municipality they don’t seem to know what’s going on, even though it’s their system!

So here’s what I did, in an effort to find out if we’re allowed to work before Mid-December, I called the Tax office (belastingdienst – phone number: 08000543)  and they seem to be the only people with a clue as to what’s going on!

Here is what they’ve said:

“First you need to go to your IND appointment (if you don’t have one you need to book one),

Once you have the ‘stamp’ in your passport that verifies your right to work you then need call us and we will check whether it is quicker to allocate you a sofi number so that you can get paid or for you to attend your appointment at the municipality (again if you don’t yet have one you need to book one) to get your BSN.
In some municipalities it’s not necessary to have an appointment to register with your municipality, you can just show up half an hour before your appointment with the IND and fill out your municipal registration then but for this you need to check with your municipality first.

Even if your municipality runs a booking system it might be worth showing up half an hour early for your IND appointment anyway in case you can get a sitting with the municipality registration as some bookings might have been cancelled or missed allowing you to fill the slot.”

So then I asked if we where allowed to work in the wean while and the belastingdienst said:

“Yes you may work but you cannot be paid until you have your BSN or a SOFI Number, but since your not likely to be paid until you’ve been working for a month already, it probably wont make a difference to when you get paid. If it does you’ll have to come to an agreement with your employer to hold your pay until you get the number.”

Finally! Someone who knew what they where talking about! I can’t thank the woman at the belastingdienst enough for her help today.

If you’re struggling to get your head around registering I seriously recommend you call them. If you don’t speak Dutch you will want to press the number 3 at the first menu and the number 3 at the second menu and then when you eventually get through to someone apologise profusely for not speaking Dutch then joke about how your country’s education system is inferior to the Dutch one – Works every time!

Speak Soon,


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