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Registering in the Amsterdam Area

You will need to register with your municipality (gemeente) if you plan to live or work in the Netherlands. If you are registering for the first time, you will receive your citizen service number (BSN) when you do this. You must also register a change of address if you relocate and de-register when you leave the Netherlands.

Do I need to register?

Everyone moving to the Netherlands from abroad must register their address in the Personal Records Database (BRP). This also include citizens of the EU, EEA and Switzerland. It is very important to be registered at the correct address of residence. After registering you receive a Dutch citizen service number (burgerservicenummer BSN). You need a BSN to work, open a bank account, take out healthcare insurance or apply for benefits. If you are returning to Amsterdam from abroad, you must re-register or renew your registration. Your BSN remains the same.

Registering is optional if you will be living in the Netherlands for less than four months, but you must register if you want to obtain a BSN – they are used by everyone in the Netherlands, even those born here. There is a special procedure to register for a short stay of less than four months (see more below). Children must also be registered.

What do I need for registration?

In order to register you must be in the Netherlands legally and you must have a residence in the Amsterdam Area. You will be required to present documents proving your identity and that you meet these requirements.These include your passport, your original birth certificate and your original marriage certificate if you are married. In some cases a sworn translation may be required. You will also need to show either a rental contract, proof you have purchased your home or proof you have permission to reside at an address. Depending on your circumstances and country of origin, you may also be asked to provide additional documents such as a residence permit. 

How do I register in the Amsterdam Area?

You must register within five days of arriving in the Amsterdam Area. You register in person at a City Office and you need to make an appointment for this in advance. Remember to bring all the required documents. Children under 16 years of age must be accompanied by a parent, guardian or caregiver who must provide valid proof of identity. If you are moving to another town or city, contact the local municipality to make an appointment. 

Registration with IN Amsterdam

You may also be able to make use of IN Amsterdam’s specialist immigration services if you are moving to Amsterdam or one of its partner municipalities. These services are available for people who qualify as a highly skilled migrant or are eligible for the startup permit or orientation year permit. EU citizens working for a company that is recognised as an official sponsor by the IND can also use IN Amsterdam’s services.

How does registration with IN Amsterdam work?

  • Municipal registration is arranged when collecting the initial residence permit
  • Those who receive their residence permit directly from the IND can schedule an appointment for municipal registration
  • Intermediaries (relocation agents, immigration lawyers, tax advisers, company contacts etc) can make an appointment for registration

Register for a short stay

The short stay registration procedure applies to people who will be resident in the Netherlands for no more than four months. For example, if you have a short-term employment contract, are a cross-border worker or are studying. If you’re residing in the Netherlands for less than four months, you’re not required to officially register as a resident. However, if you plan to work, study or access services like healthcare, you’ll need a BSN. You’ll receive your BSN when you register for a short stay in the Netherlands and are entered in the Registry for Non-Residents (Registratie Niet Ingezetenen, RNI). Short stay migrants can only register in one the 19 participating municipalities in the Netherlands. IN Amsterdam also offers registration for some short stay migrants. 

Registering a change of address

If you are planning to move, you must register your change of address. This applies whether you live in a rental property or have bought an apartment or house. You can register your change of address no earlier than one month before or up to five working days after your move.Failure to register at your new address in time could result in a fine. An incorrect registration could also affect your housing benefit, student benefits and your taxes.

How do I register a change of address?

If you have a DigiD code (see below), you can register your move with an online form or by post. You will need to upload or send the following documents:

  • valid identification (passport, identity card or residence permit)
  • a tenancy agreement or purchase contract for your new home
  • if you are lodging with someone: a copy of the identity document of the main resident and a declaration stating that they give you permission to live there

If you are leaving Amsterdam, check the website of the municipality you are moving to for the online form and postal address for registering a change of address. The municipality you are moving to will notify your old municipality of your departure.

You will receive written confirmation of your move at your new address. 

Who can register a change of address?

  • Everyone above the age of 16
  • Spouses who live together may register for each other
  • Partners, in a registered partnership, may register for each other
  • The parent, guardian or carer of minors
  • Parents with children older than 16, still living at home
  • Adults for parents who are living with them
  • The guardian of someone who has been placed in their care
  • Any other adults who are authorised in writing (see below) – for example, unmarried couples or those without a registered partnership

Authorising a third party

You can authorise someone else to register your move for you. They will need to provide:

  • Their valid form of identification (passport, driver’s licence, Dutch identity card or foreign nationals’ document)
  • An authorisation form completed and signed by you
  • Your valid form of identification (passport, driver’s licence, Dutch identity card or aliens document or a copy thereof)


It is possible to request your address details remain confidential. You can obtain more information from the Department of Civil Affairs of a City Office.

Do I need to de-register when I leave the Netherlands?

If you are leaving the Netherlands, you must de-register from the Personal Records Database yourself. Your municipality removes your personal details from the database and informs other government authorities of your departure. You can deregister a month before leaving the Netherlands and are required to indicate your date of departure. Check your municipality’s website for more information. 

What is a DigiD code?

Many official organisations and businesses in the Netherlands require you to use a digital signature called ‘DigiD’ to access their online services. To get a DigiD you must first acquire a username and a password. With these, you can sign in and access personal data or submit forms digitally. Your DigiD is connected directly to your citizen service number and home address. Typically, you should also connect your mobile phone number to your account, as many services require SMS verification when logging in. Your DigiD is your unique online identification, in the same way that your passport or driving licence is your identification offline.

After applying for a new DigiD login, an activation code will be sent to your home address within five days as an extra level of security. Note that you will never be asked to give your DigiD password over the phone, by post or by email. Watch out for phishing emails that ask you to click a link and submit your DigiD login.