How to claim your AOW pension?

If you live in the Netherlands, you will receive a letter about claiming your AOW pension about four months before you reach your AOW pension age. After you receive this letter, you can claim your AOW pension.  If you submit a claim earlier, your claim will not be processed.

If you live outside the Netherlands, you should apply for your AOW pension six months before you reach your AOW pension age. How to apply will depend on the country where you live. 

How is the Dutch pension system set up?

The Dutch pension system is made up of three pillars: Pillar 1 – The State or AOW (Algemene Ouderdomswet) pension, which is the basic pension paid out when one reaches the retirement age. The state pension is administered by the SVB  (Sociale Verzekeringsbank).  Workplace or company pensions funded by both employer and employee contributions. They are private or collective pension schemes connected to a specific industry, company or independent professional pension funds and are mostly managed by pension funds or insurance companies. Employees are entitled to choose their scheme preference within their pension fund. Updating your employer details with your pension fund is vital. More information is available on this website  . Pillar 3 – Private pension schemes are funded by personal contributions that are voluntary. Self-employed individuals and employees in industries that do not have collective pension funds contribute to this option.

To summarise: If you have lived or worked in the Netherlands, you will receive a state pension (Pillar 1) which will be calculated proportional to the number of years that you have worked in the Netherlands.

If you receive pension benefits from a work pension fund (Pillar 2) depends on if you signed a pension agreement with your employer and if you keep track of your Dutch pension scheme. How much you will receive depends on your salary and the number of years you worked.

You will only receive benefits from personal/individual pension (Pillar 3) if you took out a private pension.

What does ACCESS offer to its volunteers?

Volunteering for ACCESS is a rewarding way of using your existing skills and adding to your experience during your stay in the Netherlands. Furthermore, it provides you with an opportunity to meet people, create community and give back. More information about the benefits of volunteering at ACCESS is available on our website .

What is the process of joining ACCESS as a volunteer?

The process of becoming an ACCESS volunteer starts with our Information Sessions. The ACCESS Information Session consists of two parts: an informative presentation on ACCESS, its organisational structure and our volunteers, followed by individual interviews where skills and expectations can be discussed. Here, candidates will learn about us, what we do, how we do it and why we do it. It is an opportunity for you to get to know us, and for us in turn to get to know you. Following the information session each applicant will have a short interview session. You can find more information on our website