The Guides to Social Policy Law is a collection of publications designed to assist decision makers administering social policy law. TheĀ information contained in this publication is intended only as a guide to relevant legislation/policy. The information is accurate as at the date listed at the bottom of the page, but may be subject to change. To discuss individual circumstances please contact Services Australia. The Netherlands' Social Security System

General information

The Netherlands' social security system consists of 2 compulsory contribution-based insurance schemes supported by a non-contributory means tested welfare scheme. These schemes are:

  • the National Insurance Scheme,
  • the Employee Insurance Schemes, and
  • the National Assistance Scheme.

National Insurance Scheme

The benefits covered under the National Insurance Schemes are:

  • General Old-age Pension Act - AOW,
  • General Surviving Relatives Act - ANW,
  • General Child Benefits Act - AKW,
  • General Act on Exceptional Medical Expenses (Compensation) - AWBZ,
  • Self-employed Person's Disablement Benefits Act - WAZ, and
  • Supplementary Benefits Act - TW.

Employee Insurance Scheme

The benefits covered under the Employee Insurance Scheme are:

  • Sickness Benefits Act - ZW,
  • Disablement Benefits Act - WAO, and
  • Unemployment Benefits Act - WW.

National Assistance

Other Netherlands' social security benefits covered are:

  • National Assistance Act (Algemene Bijstandswet) - ABW.


The ministry responsible for social security in the Netherlands is the Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment.

Each Dutch scheme is administered by a separate independent authority.

The Sociale Verzekeringsbank or SVB (Social Insurance Bank) administers AOW, ANW and AKW benefits through its 9 district offices.

The National Institute for Social Insurance through UWV Gak administers ZW, WAO, WAZ, WW and TW benefits through its district offices and International Office.

Payments of Algemene Bijstandswet are administered by Municipal authorities throughout the Netherlands.

Portability of Netherlands' benefits

Netherlands' contributory and non-contributory benefits can only be paid in the Netherlands.

Contributory benefits covered by the Agreement are portable to Australia and to other countries with which the Netherlands' Government has signed a bilateral treaty that covers these benefits.

Contributory benefits are also portable to a European Union (EU) country that belongs to the European Economic Area (EEA).

Act reference: SS(IntAgree)Act Schedule 7 The Netherlands

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