What is the AOW pension?
The AOW pension is a basic state pension provided by the Dutch government to people who have reached AOW pension age. AOW is short for Algemene Ouderdomswet, the National Old Age Pensions Act. You will receive it if you have been insured under the Dutch AOW pension scheme. You will probably have been insured if you have lived or worked in the Netherlands. The AOW pension is paid by the Social Insurance Bank (SVB).
Building up AOW pension rights
You will probably have been insured under the AOW pension scheme for each year you lived or worked in the Netherlands. If you do not live in the Netherlands, you will probably not be building up an AOW pension. You build up 2% of your AOW pension for every year that you are insured under the scheme. You can build up a full AOW pension if you live and work in the Netherlands for 50 years before you reach your AOW pension age.
If you work in the Netherlands but do not live here, you might still be entitled to 2% of the AOW pension for each year that you worked in the country.
Amount of the AOW pension
How much AOW pension you receive depends on how much you have built up and also on your domestic situation, for instance whether you live alone or with a partner. The amount of AOW pension is adjusted every six months.
Applying for an AOW pension
The SVB pays the AOW pension. If you do not live in the Netherlands you have to apply for it yourself six months before you reach your AOW pension age. If you do live in the Netherlands, you will automatically receive a message from the SVB shortly before your AOW pension age.
What is the difference between the AOW pension and other pensions?
The AOW pension is not the only pension you can receive. The AOW pension is the Dutch state pension. You can also build up other pensions. Many employers, for instance, use a pension fund or insurer to provide their employees with a company pension.
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