Working abroad with a Dutch qualification

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If you have a Dutch certificate or diploma and want to work abroad, there are several things you need to find out. You may need to have certain documents or get professional recognition before you can practise your profession in another country.

Getting your diploma legalised

If you want to work outside the Netherlands you may need to get your diploma or certificate legalised. Or you may need to do this for another document relating to your education, for example a list of your grades. Legalisation makes documents suitable for use in another country. It shows that your document is genuine and recognised. Legalisation is not mandatory but some employers may ask for it. If you are not sure, ask the employer you want to work for what their requirements are.

Attention: It is easier to have your documents legalised before you leave the Netherlands.

How do I get my diploma legalised?

How you have the document legalised depends on where you want to use the qualification.

Find out how to get your Dutch diploma or certificate legalised

How long is my legalisation valid?

There is no fixed period of validity for the stamp or sticker that legalises your diploma. This is determined by the employer or educational institution abroad asking for the legalised diploma. Ask the institution abroad that wishes to receive your legalised diploma about the period of validity.

Diploma description

It may be difficult for an employer abroad to understand what the level of your Dutch diploma is. They may not know anything about Dutch education or qualifications. A diploma description shows the content of your Dutch qualification and training. This helps an employer abroad to understand how this compares to qualifications in their national education system. A diploma description is not mandatory but some employers abroad may ask for it. If you are not sure, ask the employer you want to work for what their requirements are.

Find out more about diploma descriptions

Working in a regulated profession

Find out whether your profession is regulated in the country where you want to work. If it is, you cannot automatically start working there with a Dutch qualification. You first need to have your professional qualifications recognised before you can practise in another country.

Find out more about working in a regulated profession abroad

Lost or damaged educational documents

If your diploma, certificate or list of grades is lost or damaged, you may be able to download or apply for a duplicate.

Find out more about what to do if your diploma is lost or damaged

What you also need to arrange if you’re going to move abroad


If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.