State pension (AOW)

Working in Europe | Unemployment | Netherlands

The Old Age Pensions Act (AOW) provides for basic state pensions for people age 67 and over. The amount of state pension you receive depends on your domestic situation and on the number of years you have been insured under the AOW scheme.

How much AOW pension can you expect to receive?

It is not yet possible to say exactly what the amount will be. The contributions you are now paying are not set aside for you personally, but are used to pay the pensions of people who are currently 67 and over. When the time comes for your AOW pension to be awarded, the SVB must also consider your domestic situation, and the age of your partner, if you have one. (You will find more information on this below).

Accrual of your AOW pension

For every year that you have legally lived or worked in the Netherlands after your fifteenth birthday, you accrue 2% of the full rate of AOW pension. If you live or work in the Netherlands from your 15th to your 67th year, you will receive the full 100%: 50x2%. You will normally not receive AOW pension for years spent abroad, or during which you worked abroad. For example, if you were outside the Netherlands (and not insured under the AOW scheme) for three years, you will receive 94% of the full AOW-pensioen (100%- 3x2%=94%).

If you settled in the Netherlands after the age of 15

If you came to the Netherlands after the age of 15, or if your partner or children came to the Netherlands, or resettled in the Netherlands after their fifteenth year, you can still pay contributions for years during which no pension rights were accrued. See paying backdated pension contribution.

Can I receive my AOW pension if I don't live in the Netherlands when I am 67?

Dutch state pensions cannot be paid in all countries of the world. In some cases, the payments will be reduced, or even stopped. One of the reasons for this is the Export Restrictions on Benefits Act (BEU), which is based on the principle that the Dutch government is only prepared to pay benefits to claimants living in another country if proper arrangements have been made with that country on the verification of entitlements.

Find out if you will be limited on the Dutch state pension payments (AOW).

How do you apply for a Dutch state pension (AOW)?

If you are registered with a municipality in the Netherlands, a claim form will be sent to you six months before your sixty-fifth (67th) birthday. If you live within the EU, or a country that has signed a social security agreement with the Netherlands, you should submit your pension claim to the social security institution in your country of residence. However, if you have never been covered by social security legislation in your country of residence, you should submit your claim for an AOW pension to the SVB. If you live outside the EU and you do not live in a country that has a social security agreement with the Netherlands, you should apply to the SVB office in Roermond, the Netherlands for a pension.

Further information

The institute in charge of this insurance is the SVB (Sociale Verzekeringsbank - Social Insurancebank). If you have any questions related to the AOW they can provide you with answers.

They provide extensive information on their website.