Hiring Practices in The Netherlands

During pre-employment phase only those personal data that are required for the position that the applicant applied for, can be screened. Standard screening procedures are normally not allowed in the Netherlands. In the pre-employment phase no extraordinary personal data of the candidates may be screened. This is only allowed if there are exceptional requirements for the vacancy that make this type of screening necessary. The employer can only ask about an applicant’s health situation if a medical examination is required for the job by law. Of course, it is prohibited to discriminate against applicants on the grounds of – among others – gender, race, age, civil status, religion, and so on.

On the 25th of May 2016, the new EU Regulation on privacy entered into effect. All companies were given two years to comply with the new rules laid down in the regulation. If the employer fails to do so, fines up to EUR 820.000 or 10% of the yearly turnover can be given.

For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in Netherlands, please contact Christiaan Oberman, Partner at Palthe Oberman ( at
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