Residence permit for a clergyman

Conditions for obtaining a residence permit in the Netherlands for a spiritual minister


Do you want to be employed as a spiritual minister in the Netherlands? To do this, you will need a residence permit.

How is the procedure for applying for a residence permit?

The employer (or the clergyman himself) must apply to the IND for a combined residence and work permit. The IND submits this request to the Labor Exchange (UWV). The UWV, in turn, assesses this request, based on the legislation, and provides its recommendations to the IND, which, on the basis of these recommendations, makes its decision on the issue of the requested residence and work permit.


There are a number of conditions that apply to everyone. In addition to these, the following requirements apply:

  • you have passed the inburgering (integration exam) if you are not exempt from it;
  • you have a sufficient level of income: per month without vacation pay € 1701 (with vacation pay € 1837,08);
  • your religious or ideological organization must have the status of a legal entity or be part of an organization that has the status of a legal entity;
  • your religious or ideological organization must meet a number of additional conditions related to ability to pay, continuity and reliability;
  • the organization must register you with DUO within 4 weeks after you receive your residence permit in order to pass the integration exams;
  • your organization should provide you with the time and opportunity for your integration.

Features of the Law on Employment of Foreign Citizens

To obtain a work permit, you and your employer must meet a number of requirements.

Pastor or Religion Teacher

  • A spiritual minister (pastor or religious teacher) must work for a religious or ideological organization.
  • This job requires special training, knowledge or experience.
  • The presence of a spiritual minister is essential for the worship and functioning of the organization.
  • A salary equal to or higher than that of a 21-year-old.
  • The term of work is maximum 3 years.

Monk or missionary

  • A monk or missionary performs the duties necessary to achieve the purpose of the organization.

If there is no employment relationship with the organization, then the following requirements must be met:

– according to the charter, the monk takes a vow of poverty and or

– the organization provides him with a salary not lower than the minimum.

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