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Doing business in the Netherlands

Starting a business in the Netherlands is not that complex. Hence, if you think about a start up, then visit the Chambers of Commerce and have a company registered.

Before you visit the Chambers of Commerce you should think about a company name, check the domain, claim it, then ask at the Chambers of Commerce to treat your registration confidential. That prevents you as much as possible from receiving ghost invoices.

A one man company provides fiscal benefits such as the entrepreneurs discount, starting entrepreneurs discount and the small business deduction. Although currently under discussion due to the crisis. Even though you have a one man company, that implies the capital in owned by one man (woman), you can have employees.

A BV company (limited liability company) is set up via a notary. No fiscal benefits here, but fiscal rules the more (see my other articles). If you started the BV company to limit your liability, than this is not the case. The share capital is EUR 1 and for EUR 1 your liability is not protected. You still need to shield yourself properly with general terms and conditions and a liability insurance. This can also be done with a one man company.
A BV company you start because you would like to have multiple businesses next to eachother, as you can only have one one man company. Or you would like to be able to sell the shares in time, or from a commercial point of view (BV company name suggests a mature company, but there do exist substantial Dutch companies that are not a BV company). There are many reason why you would like to have a BV company, but starting with a one man company makes it a little easier.

Once you decided about the type of company and the company has been registered you start to receive blue envelops. A blue envelop implies the tax office is sending you a message. Not responding to the message of the tax office will result in issues, maybe not the same month, but soon after. Always open the mail, do what is requested in the time that has been set. If not done so, you receive penalties for late filing or late payment. For instance, the initial penalty for filing the corporate income tax return late is EUR 2.460. That penalty can go up to the maximum amount of EUR 4.960. Please note, a tax fine is a non deductible cost.

After the aforementioned formalities have been dealt with, you can be the creative entrepreneur earning his or her own money. Being in business we can only recommend.

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