Important changes regarding the 30% ruling

Important changes regarding the 30% ruling

If you are a highly skilled migrant in the Netherlands recruited from abroad, you might qualify for the 30% ruling. This ruling has been subject to changes in 2024. What impact will this have on you? Keep reading to find out.

What is the 30% Ruling?

The 30% Ruling, also referred to as the 30% facility, is a tax benefit provided to highly skilled migrants relocating to the Netherlands for a specific job position. Eligible individuals under the 30% Ruling are exempt from paying taxes up to 30% of their gross salary in the Netherlands. This arrangement allows employers, under certain conditions, to allocate up to 30% of the employee’s salary as a tax-free allowance for a period of 60 months (or five years). The purpose of this reimbursement is to offset the additional expenses that international employees may face when moving to a new country for work. Both the employee and the employer must agree in writing for the ruling to be applicable. Effective from January 1, 2024, the 30% ruling has been adjusted to the 30/20/10% rule.

Decrease to 30/20/10% rule

Employees who apply for the 30% ruling in 2024 will not receive the full benefit for 5 years. This adjustment affects new arrivals only and does not impact current recipients. The reduction will be implemented gradually in three stages:

  • For the initial 20 months, you can benefit from a tax-free portion of 30% of your salary.
  • In the subsequent 20 months, the tax-free portion decreases to 20% of your salary.
  • In the final 20 months, the tax-free portion is further reduced to 10% of your salary.

Moreover, starting from January 1, 2024, the tax benefit is capped at an annually adjusted maximum salary amount. For guidance on this change, you can seek advice from us.

If you are a highly skilled employee and you started your employment in or before December 2023, you can make use of the ‘old’ 30% ruling. Therefore you are still entitled to a tax-free allowance of 30% of your gross salary for 5 years.

Garden leave

Garden leave affects the entitlement to the 30% ruling. The applicability of this ruling stops one pay period after the last pay period in which work in fact has been performed. So if you are exempted from work, the tax benefit ceases to apply. A transfer of the ruling to a new employer could be at risk as well. Therefore, signing a settlement agreement that includes a period of exemption from work can be detrimental. We can provide guidance on this matter.


If employees with a visa for highly skilled migrants become unemployed, they have up to 3 months to find a new job that meets the criteria. This period is intended for securing a new position with another recognized sponsor and cannot exceed the duration of your highly skilled migrant permit. If your residence permit expires sooner, you have less than the 3 months’ time. The period for finding a job starts on the day on which your contract was terminated.

If you can’t find new employment that meets the visa requirements before that date, the IND may revoke your residence permit. In this regard, the termination date of the employment contract arising from a settlement agreement is crucial. GMW lawyers in The Hague can provide guidance on this issue.

Any questions?

The 30% tax-free benefit will be reduced in 2024, but the eligibility for reimbursement of extra-territorial costs continues to be important for employees relocating to the Netherlands. For further advice and information on how this adjustment will affect you, please contact us.