10 Changes to Dutch Law for 2018

The following are ten changes to Dutch law effective 1st January 2018. These include adjustments to existing rules and new regulations for childcare, minimum wage, pensions, dog owners, sales tax and several other matters…

Dutch Ministry Flags

Improvements to Quality of Childcare

  • The number of babies per childcare professional will be reduced from 4:1 to 3:1, providing each child with greater amount of attention.
  • The rule applies to both daycares and playgroups.
  • To help improve child development, each child will be assigned a mentor.
  • All day nursery and playgroup staff must be fluent in Dutch.

Childcare Workers

  • Everyone who works or lives in a location where children are cared for must register in the personal register from 1 March 2018. You cannot work in childcare without registration in the personal register. With the personnel register, employees are continuously screened for offenses incongruous with working with children. The new register will ensure temporary employees, such as trainees and volunteers are also continuously screened. This group of workers must be in the register on 1 March 2018.

Expansion of Basic Health Insurance Cover

  • Patients who suffer from hip or knee arthritis will receive the first 12 sessions of physical therapy at no charge.
  • Cancer patients undergoing immune therapy treatment will receive an allowance toward transportation to and from treatment sessions.

State Pension Age –

  • The Dutch state pension age goes up by 3 months on 1st January 2018 to 66 years of age (previously 65 years 9 months).

Marriage: Community Property

  • Community property for people marrying after 1st January 2018 is, by default, limited to that which is accumulated following the marriage. Property owned prior to a wedding is retained by the individual who owned it.

Partner Killing

  • Juvenile courts will be allowed to rule on contact between a child and parent who may be accused of killing the other parent.

Minimum Wage

  • Obligation to pay at least the minimum wage when working with piecework. In addition, this obligation also applies to overtime, including holiday allowance.
  • The minimum wage becomes the minimum standard for agreed work (other than an employment contract).
  • The minimum wage will increase from € 1,565.40 to € 1,578.00 gross per month from 1 January 2018.

New Degree in Higher Education

  • In addition to the existing bachelor’s and master’s degrees, there will be a new independent study program in higher education beginning in 2018: the associate degree. This is a 2-year program in higher professional education, ideally suited for MBO-4 graduates who want to continue studying but who abandon a 4-year bachelor’s degree. The associate degree also offers opportunities for training and retraining adults and workers in the context of lifelong learning. The 150 new associate degree programs can be followed at 22 different funded colleges. In addition, more than 60 associate degree programs will start at non-government-funded colleges.

Excise and VAT Tax Increases

  • The cost of a 20-cigarette pack will increase by €.18 and cost of 40-gram bag of tobacco will increase by €.36 (as of 01 April 2018)
  • A stricter measure will be applied to the ‘medicine’ product category (i.e. 6% BTW). Products which do not meet the new parameters will now be taxed at the regular 21% BTW rate. This change will affect such products as toothpaste, shampoo and sunscreen.

Behaviour Course for High-Risk Dogs

  • Owners of dogs whose breeds are now classified as ‘high-risk’ are required to have their dog complete a behavioral course. These are the dog breeds and cross-breeds the Dutch government has classified as potentially dangerous.



Related information…



Angloinfo South Holland (The Hague Rotterdam Delft Leiden)