Rights and obligations

Asylum seekers have the right to reception when they do not have enough money to support themselves. COA’s reception is governed by specific conditions.


  • Education: children of compulsory school age are entitled to go to school.
  • Accommodation: asylum seekers who have been granted a residence permit are offered a home outside the asylum seekers’ centre.
  • Pocket money: asylum seekers receive weekly pocket money for food and clothes, as laid down in the Asylum Seekers and Other Categories of Aliens (Provisions) Regulations.
  • Insurance: asylum seekers are insured against most healthcare expenses and against the consequences of legal liability.
  • Work: asylum seekers are allowed to work for pay for a maximum of 24 weeks a year.


The right to a roof is offset by specific obligations:

  • TB screening asylum seekers arriving in the Netherlands must cooperate in a tuberculosis (TB) screening and any follow-up treatment that may be necessary.
  • Home rules: we expect the occupants to observe the reception centre’s house rules.
  • Duty to report occupants must report to the Aliens Police and COA regularly for the in-house registration.
  • Registration with the municipality asylum seekers staying at a reception centre more than six months after they have requested asylum must register in the population register of the municipality in which they are staying.