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Is there a period of minimum stay in the Netherlands to avail the 30% ruling?

Question:
 
I have been been working in the Netherlands for the last 9 months (since mid of May 2012) and already have the 30% ruling approved since that time. I have also received the benefits in my salary thus far. Since I have to return to my home country now (which was already known to my employer), my company now asks me to complete the entire year (i.e. till May, 2013) so that i‘m eligible for the tax rebates. They have told me that otherwise, I would need to pay the tax authorities the whole amount which has been reimbursed to me (as per the 30% ruling) during this period of 9 months and would also need to pay the penality for not completing the full year. Are these charges layed by my company true?
 
Answer:
 
The 30% ruling only has a maximum period not a minimum period. Even if you work only 1 month in the Netherlands the 30% ruling can be applied in the payroll administration. There is no penalty for leaving the Netherlands within a year. It is not even required that you live in the Netherlands at all.
 
As you can see on the 30% declaration which was provided by the tax authorities only the maximum period is mentioned for which the ruling can be used (as long as you are working for the employer with whom you applied for the ruling). It may be though that you have made other arrangements with your employer in your employment contract. You would need to check your contract for this. But from the side of the tax authorities there will be no tax claim for leaving the Netherlands within 1 year, not with respect to the 30% ruling nor with respect to tax rebates. In the payroll administration tax rebates are calculated per month, so you will not have received too much tax rebates if the payroll was done properly.
 
Since you were in the Netherlands only part of the year you will even be able to claim a tax refund, see http://www.expatax.nl/kb/article/i-have-not-lived-or-worked-in-the-netherlands-the-whole-year-can-i-claim-a-refund-96.html.
 
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