Asylum Seekers

Asylum seekers are entitled to reception from the time they request asylum until they receive a residence permit or must leave the Netherlands.The Central Agency for the Reception of Asylum Seekers (COA) houses them at reception centres and provides their basic needs. Asylum seekers’ rights are laid down in the Asylum Seekers and Other Categories of Aliens (Provisions) Regulations.

Basic facilities

COA has various types of reception centres throughout the Netherlands. Reception centres offer asylum seekers basic facilities such as a roof, cooking and washing areas, and computers. We also give them weekly pocket money and arrange their healthcare insurance. Their daily supervision is based on the current phase of their asylum procedure. Different facilities are available at the central reception location, process reception locations and family reception locations

Asylum seekers who have own assets or income are obliged to report this. They may have to give up part of their assets or income in order to contribute to their own reception costs and the reception costs of their family.

For whom?

All asylum seekers in the (first) asylum procedure have the right to reception and the basic facilities.  Asylum seekers coming from a safe country will be rejected quickly. Asylum seekers submitting a repeated request for asylum have the right to reception only once their Extended Asylum Procedure has started. They do not have a right to reception during the waiting period before the submission of an application for a repeated request for asylum.

Asylum seekers may also lose their right to reception in some circumstances, for example when they misbehave badly and are declared undesirable aliens

Actual situation

Due to the recent high inflow of  asylum seekers, the Netherlands currently does not have enough reception places for them  in normal reception centres. That is why asylum seekers are accommodated in (temporary) emergency reception locations with limited facilities.

Read more about the actual situation in the letter (available in 8 languages) that was issued in February 2016 by the Minister of Migration.