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What is the deadline for filing a tax return?

Invitation to file a tax return in the Netherlands

The tax authorities send out the invitations to file a tax return from January each year. The invitation can be sent later though. If you have received an invitation to file a tax return a deadline will be applicable. The deadline is mentioned on the invitation. It is important that you check your personal details which are mentioned on the invitation.
The tax authorities determine based on the information they already have about you for the applicable tax year and previous tax years whether you will receive an invitation. The tax authorities receive information from different sources like your employer, banks, mortgage providers, municipality etc. This means that not everybody will receive an invitation.


The normal deadline to file a tax return is May 1 (before 2014 the deadline was April 1). If a foreign period is involved the normal deadline is July 1. The deadline must at least be a month from the moment you receive the invitation. The deadline can be extended by filing a request for a time extension. If Expatax will prepare the tax return we will put your tax return on the special time extension agreement we have with the tax authorities. This way the deadline is extended to May 1 of the following year. But whether you file before May 1 or not, it is important to take action.

You did not receive an invitation to file a tax return

If you haven't received an invitation to file a tax return you don't have to worry about the May 1 or July 1 deadline. In that case a deadline is not applicable. However, if you know that you will have to pay additional income tax, for example in case you earned income which was not yet taxed at source in the Netherlands, like freelance income or income from abroad, you will have to request a tax return if you did not receive an invitation before August 1.
If you believe you can claim a refund and haven't received an invitation you can still file a tax return without the invitation. A tax return can be filed for the past 5 years.
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Comments (7)
Comment by peter on Wed, Mar 28th, 2012 at 5:15 PM
dear arjan, very useful info, many thanks. one question though: i haven‘t received an invitation to file a tax return, as i only earned income that was taxed in nl. you say a deadline is not applicable in this case. but do i have to send any tax declaration or it is not even needed in my case? thanks for your answer p
Comment by arjan enneman on Thu, Mar 29th, 2012 at 1:36 PM
if you haven‘t received an invitation and there is no reason to file a tax return you indeed don‘t have to do anything. you don‘t have to send a declaration if it is not necessary. see also:
Comment by peter on Thu, Mar 29th, 2012 at 2:00 PM
hello arjan, many thanks for the swift reply. checked your other post, very useful indeed. i have a last question left: we have a child and we get the quarterly uitkering from svb and also a contribution to the kindergadverblijf. are these the child credits you mention? do we have to send in a tax declaration due to the fact that we receive childcare allowance? thank you peter
Comment by arjan enneman on Thu, Mar 29th, 2012 at 2:12 PM
the amount you receive from the svb - kinderbijslag - is tax free. you don‘t have to declare this as income. the same with the childcare allowance, this allowance is also tax free and won‘t have to be declared in your tax return.
Comment by peter on Thu, Mar 29th, 2012 at 2:15 PM
coolio, many thanks again for the clarification, much appreciated!
Comment by Laurence on Mon, Aug 22nd, 2016 at 3:54 PM
Hi, I was living and working in the Netherlands in January and February 2013. As I left the country I was not informed afterwards whether I had to fill a tax statement (or M-form) or not for 2013? So I didn‘t. Now my country (Belgium) wants to tax me on those 2 months of income (while my Dutch employer withdrew the loonheffing on that income). So I would have to pay tax twice on this income? Can I still fill an M-form and get that loonheffing back? Or what else can I do? Thank you in advance!
Comment by Arjan Enneman on Mon, Aug 29th, 2016 at 2:09 PM
You can claim an exemption in your Belgian tax return to prevent double taxation. Filing a tax return in the Netherlands is not a requirement to claim an exemption in Belgium. You will have the year end statement which you received from your employer. You can send a copy of this statement to the Belgian tax authorities which will support your claim for an exemption. For the exemption it is not relevant how much tax was paid in the Netherlands. But you may have to prove that you physically worked in the Netherlands. It is also still possible to file a tax return (M form) for 2013 in the Netherlands and this way get some tax back from the Dutch tax authorities. See The height of the Dutch refund will not affect the tax you will have to pay in Belgium. I have lived in Belgium 10 years myself and worked in the Netherlands all the time.
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