Richard & Kan

Business Owner from United Kingdom and Thailand


In 2012 I was running my own UK company and a won a contract with a Dutch client in the Hague. I commuted weekly, but after a year I decided, together with my spouse, to close my UK company and relocate to the Netherlands permanently. Two of the main reasons were the 30% rule and the greater acceptance of homosexuality and other races in the Dutch culture, as we are a gay married couple (and of mixed race British/Thai - also a factor in the welcoming Dutch culture).

12 months later my new employer in the Netherlands then sent us to Vietnam to start a subsidiary for them. Having done that successfully for them we now have come back to the Netherlands, only to discover that in 1 year I will lose the 30% tax rule, a promise broken after everything my family has sacrificed in order to provide profit to a Dutch company. The Dutch government breaking this promise will impact us a great deal financially.

We were considering buying a home here, as the first few years of home ownership are very expensive and the few years we have left on the 30% rule make that a far less risky option than it would otherwise be. We were set on making the Netherlands our home for life.

Now we have to reconsider, and seriously. As a master's educated computer scientist and entrepreneur, I can easily get a job anywhere in the world, but we would rather stay here. We are even considering, once we have bought a home, to adopt a child here. But not now. We have to compare what other countries might offer us to relocate, since it seems the Netherlands does not value what we have brought here. I feel very sad writing this because we really do not want to leave such a warm, loving and accepting country merely for financial reasons.

With the whole Brexit fiasco, we do not want to return the UK (ever!). The Netherlands is our home. But I am sure there are other countries that will offer great incentives for us to relocate to them, so we have to consider it a real possibility, which most likely means we will probably never come back since we are at the stage in life where we want to buy a home and settle down. Please reconsider this law. Nobody wins when your culture loses people like us. The 30% ruling is a great idea, it works, and whilst I understand the reasons for reducing it to five years, that really only makes logical sense for newcomers, and not to break the deal with existing expats like myself.