Dutch American Friendship Treaty (DAFT)
The Dutch American Friendship Treaty (also called DAFT permit) is a friendship treaty between the Netherlands and the US dating all the way back to 1956. The DAFT agreement is intended to promote trade and commerce between the two countries.
The DAFT is aimed at US citizens, to be more precise it is intended for US entrepreneurs, ergo anyone who is self-employed in any way.
How does the DAFT relate to immigration?
To cut a long story short, the DAFT offers US entrepreneurs and their family members a very easy way to obtain residency in the Netherlands.
They are two main requirements to qualify for the Dutch American Friendship Treaty permit. The first is that one needs to set up a business in the Netherlands. This can either be a simple sole proprietorship, a partnership or somewhat more intricate LLC (called BV in Dutch).
Secondly the entrepreneur needs to deposit an amount of at least €4500 in a business account. If an LLC (BV) is incorporated than an additional requirement is that the entrepreneur owns at least 25% of the shares.
Upon approval the entrepreneur and her/his family members will initially get residence permits for two years. After two years, if there is business activity and the invested of €4500 is still present in the business, then the permits will be extended for five years. The Dutch-American Friendship Treaty permit can be extended for as long as these requirements are met. Eventually of course one can be eligible for permanent residence…..but that is a different topic.