Is my job regulated?

What is a regulated job?

If your job is regulated, this means that you must meet certain requirements in order to be able to practice the profession. These requirements are laid down in a law for each country. In each country there is a competent authority for each protected profession that checks whether you meet the requirements.

Common protected professions are:

  • general care nurse (in Dutch: verpleegkundige)
  • doctor in basic medicine (in Dutch: arts)
  • dentist (in Dutch: tandarts)
  • teacher in primary education (in Dutch: leraar)
  • teacher in secondary education (in Dutch: docent)
  • child care worker (in Dutch: medewerker kinderopvang)
  • Physiotherapist (in Dutch: fysiotherapeut)

A protected profession is also called a regulated profession.

How do I know if my job is regulated?

Working in the Netherlands

Would you like to work in the Netherlands with a foreign diploma? Then check if your job is regulated. Follow these steps:

  1. Search your profession in the database of the European Commission. Please note that you have to know the Dutch name of your profession.
  2. Is your profession on the list? Then it's regulated.
  3. Isn't your profession on the list? Then it's probably not regulated. Please contact us if you have any doubts.

Working in another EU country

Would you like to work with a Dutch diploma in a country within the EU or Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein or Switzerland? Then check if your job is regulated in that country:

  1. Choose the country you are going to in the database of the European Commission.
  2. Search the profession in the list.
  3. Is your profession on the list? Then it's regulated.
  4. Isn't your profession on the list? Then it's probably not regulated. Please contact the national authority if you have any doubts.

Working outside the EU

Would you like to work with a Dutch diploma in a country outside the EU?

  • Contact the NARIC office in the country concerned. They can tell you how to find out if your profession is regulated.
  • Some countries do not have a NARIC office. In that case, the ministry of education of the country concerned can help you.

My job is regulated. Now what?

Click on the name of the Dutch profession or the foreign profession in the European database. There you will find information about the competent authority that checks the requirements for this profession.

Contact that organisation to ask how you can get permission to practice the profession. And what the rules are if you only want to work temporarily or occasionally.

Are you staying within the EU or in Switzerland, Norway, Liechtenstein or Iceland? Then, in some cases, you can use one of the means below, which will help you to get permission to practise your profession:

European Professional Card

The European Professional card is an electronic procedure to get your profession recognised in another EU country. You can apply for a European Professional Card if you want to practise one of the following professions:

  • pharmacist
  • physiotherapist
  • real estate agent
  • nurse
  • mountain guide

You can find more information about the costs and application procedure on the website for 'Your Europe'.

AC declaration

Do you have a Dutch qualification for a different regulated profession and are you planning to go to another EU country or Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland? Then apply for a free AC declaration. This document is issued in English and states that your profession is regulated in the Netherlands.

Please note: An AC declaration is neither a description of your diploma nor a permit to perform a regulated profession abroad.

It only applies to holders of a Dutch diploma who wish to work in a regulated profession in the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland, and is issued in English. If your profession is regulated in said countries, but not in the Netherlands, you can still request an AC declaration.

Example of an AC declaration (150.39 kB)

Apply for an AC declaration

Do you have a VET qualification?

Apply for an AC declaration at S-BB

Do you have a bachelor’s or master’s degree?

Apply for an AC declaration

An AC declaration can be provided for all regulated professions, with the exception of the following:

Certificate of conduct

In some cases you may need a certificate of conduct (in Dutch: Verklaring Omtrent Gedrag, VOG). You can find more information on how to apply for this certificate on the website of the Dutch government.

My job is not regulated. Now what?

You're allowed to practice the profession.

Working in the Netherlands

Does your employer ask for an evaluation of your diploma? Then request it (for a fee) via the website of the International Credential Information Centre (IDW).

Please note that a diploma evaluation is a non-binding advice.

Are you looking for general information about your foreign diploma? Or would you like an indication of which Dutch diploma you can compare your foreign diploma with? Then take a look at our overview of education systems worldwide.

Working in another EU country

If you are going to work abroad with a Dutch diploma, it may be useful to apply (for a fee) for a diploma description. This is a document that gives an indication with which local diploma your Dutch diploma can be compared.

See if a diploma description is useful for your situation on the page about studying abroad with a Dutch diploma.

Working abroad with a Dutch mbo diploma

Would you like to work abroad with a Dutch mbo diploma? Then you can apply to the SBB for the Europass Certificate Supplement (CS).

This is a short, practical description of a Dutch mbo diploma. The information comes directly from the qualification files established by the Minister of Education, Culture and Science. The CS is available in Dutch, English and German. For more information, please visit the SBB website.

Support for problems with recognition in EU

Are you having difficulties with the recognition of your profession within the EU? Then you can contact SOLVIT, the EU complaints desk.

More information

Nuffic has been appointed as the Assistance Centre for Professional Recognition in the Netherlands. There is an assistance centre for professional recognition in each EU country.

The assistance centre's task is to provide information to people who want to work in a protected profession in the European Union (EU), Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland.

Read more about our roles in international diploma and professional recognition on our page about Nuffic as national expertise centre for the recognition of foreign qualifications.

Want to know more about working in the Netherlands?

Would you like more general information about practising a regulated profession as an employee or self-employed person? Visit the website of the Chamber of Commerce (Dutch) or the English-language website of the central government.


The United Kingdom has left the European Union on 31 January 2020. This can affect professionals with a UK qualification who want to work in the Netherlands. Please visit the website of the Dutch government for more information.


Do you have more questions? Ask them via our contact form.