HIV+ alien & general questions

Which rights do you have if you don't have documents of legal residency in the Netherlands?

In any case, you have a right to medically required care. You also have a right to legal assistance, and every child under the age of 18 is allowed to attend school.

Which rights do you not have if you don't have documents of legal residency in the Netherlands?

You do not have a right to collective government services. This means: you have no right to financial support, you cannot receive an individual housing subsidy, you cannot get insurance from a health insurance company, you have no right to child benefits, you have no right to an occupancy permit, and no employer is allowed to hire you.

Can you request asylum because you have HIV?

Having HIV is not a reason for being granted asylum. However, there can be reasons of a humanitarian nature if you fear your HIV status will result in your being persecuted and discriminated against in your own country.

What can you do if you find out during the asylum procedure that you have HIV?

In that case, you could start an application procedure for a residence permit on the grounds of a medical emergency, in addition to your request for asylum. You will have to meet special requirements for this.

Can you apply for legal residency in the Netherlands because you have HIV?

It is possible to start an application procedure for a residence permit on the grounds of a medical emergency.

Are you legal in the Netherlands if you have started an application procedure for residency on the grounds of a medical emergency?

During the procedure, your stay in the Netherlands will be legal and you will have the right to medically necessary care, but you will not have a right to make use of collective government services.

Can you get a postponement of departure due to illness?

If you are so ill that you are not capable of travelling, you may be granted a postponement of departure if you satisfy a number of very strict conditions. The Aliens Police/Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND) must consult a doctor. The Medical Advice Bureau (BMA) is often involved as well. You can ask for temporary reception/accommodation on the basis of Art. 64 of the Aliens Act.

Can you get temporary accommodation?

Temporary reception/accommodation is possible in a number of different situations on the basis of the Aliens Act. In practice, however, this is often difficult to get.

Where can you get more information on Dutch legislation relating to aliens, on legal support, on the situation in specific countries and on access to care?

  1. For information (in Dutch) on the laws relating to aliens and on legal support in the Netherlands, check out the website of Het Juridisch Loket: - click on Vreemdelingen.
  2. For information and advice on the access to medical care and how this can be paid for, or on the right of residence, accommodation possibilities and the situation in specific countries, your HIV nurse / social worker can consult Lampion via
  3. For a list of organisations that provide or help you find emergency accommodation, check out the website (in Dutch) of Stichting Landelijke Ongedocumenteerden Steunpunt (LOS): Click on Informatie, then Steunorganisaties, then Noodopvang.

What other TIPS are there?

Always get advice from an experienced law firm that is specialised in the laws relating to aliens.Make sure your lawyer gets a copy of every letter you send to the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND), the Medical Advice Bureau (BMA), etc. Fees will always need to be paid, but private funds may be able to offer you financial help for this.

end faq


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