ONA Exceptions

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Yes, You heard it right ! ONA exceptions are possible. Learn what are the conditions and how you can apply for the exceptions.

ONA is known as the orientation on the Dutch Labor Market is all about working and finding work. This is one of the exam required for inburgering.

However if you have worked within the Netherlands and have a job, you may apply for exemption from ONA exam. This is called an ‘ontheffing wegens aantoonbaar voldoende ingeburgerd’ (‘exemption due to demonstrable sufficient integration’). However there are few conditions :

  • You have worked for at least 6 months in the past 12 months.
  • You have worked as a salaried employee.
  • You worked at least 48 hours a month.

How can you apply for exception?
1. Log in to Mijn Inburgering usig DigiD to apply for an exemption. If this won’t work, use the form ‘Aanvraag vrijstelling Oriëntatie op de Nederlandse Arbeidsmarkt’ attached here.
2. Click on “Request Exemption ONA”. There are two forms depending upon the type of employers. Choose the form which you have to fill.
3. Send the form to DUO together with supported documents.

What do you need as supportive documents?
You will need :

  • 6 months salary slip
  • HR declaration stating that you are currently working with the employer
  • Bank statements for the proof of salary being received for past 6 months

How long will it take to get the exception?
The decision on whether you get an exception, will be available within at least 6 weeks.

Good Luck to the ones applying for the exception ! If you find the post useful, do not forget to rate us !

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Postpartum Depression

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Postpartum Depression also known as postnatal depression or PPD is a type of mood disorder just after the childbirth.

Postpartum Depression (PPD) - Postpartum Depression Symptoms ...

Your body go through many changes during and after pregnancy. After the birth of the child, you and family, everyone want to spend the joyous moments together with the child. At the same time, as a mother, you may feel the mood swings, sadness, emptiness within a few days after the childbirth. These can be called ‘baby blues’.

Baby blues happens almost to every woman especially to the first time moms. If the baby blues does not go away and continues even after 2 weeks, then you may have postpartum depression. This is a very common problem after pregnancy and happens due to the extensive hormonal changes.

What are the symptoms of baby blues?

  • Mood Swings
  • Anxiety
  • Crying
  • Sadness
  • Appetite problems

What are the symptoms of Postpartum Depression?

  • Severe mood swings
  • Loosing confidence in herself
  • Excessive crying without any reason
  • Difficulty bonding with your baby
  • Worrying about not feeling love towards her baby
  • Fear that you are not a good mother
  • Hopelessness
  • Feelings of guilt, shame, worthlessness or inadequacy
  • Severe anxiety
  • Having thoughts of hurting yourself or baby

One may or may not feel all the symptoms at the same time. Some women do not tell about their symptoms as they may feel embarrassed, or ashamed about it.

What can cause the depression?
A lot of hormonal changes are usually the cause of such feelings. But there are many other factors that can contribute to this feeling such as :

  • Tiring labor or delivery
  • Tiredness due to lack of sleep
  • Overwhelmed with the newborn
  • Doubts about your ability to be a good mother
  • An unrealistic need to be a perfect mom
  • Being less attractive
  • Lack of free time for yourself

These feelings are very common to the new mothers.

How can you help yourself?

  • Rest as much as possible. Sleep when your baby is sleeping.
  • Make time to go out, visit friends, or spend time alone with your partner. Even a 15 min free time is also luxury. 😉
  • If you cannot go out, ask your family to take out the baby for the walk etc. to get some time for yourself.
  • Talk about your feelings with your partner or your best friend. It is important to open up with someone.
  • Do not try to do too much or everything by your own. Ask for help or support from your partner or family.
  • Go for a makeover. Be beautiful and feel beautiful.
  • If you are not able to do some task, its okay. Its not realistic to be a perfect mom.

How can you partner help?

  • Listen to her. This is what she needs the most – emotional support. Encourage her to talk to you.
  • Don’t tell her to pull herself together. She would if she could. Instead, tell her that she’s doing a great job of being a new mother.
  • Don’t judge her if she is not able to do something. Instead listen to her freely.
  • Take her out at least for half an hour so as to change the environment around her.
  • Don’t make major life changes just after the childbirth.
  • Take on some of the night feeds or caring of the baby so she can rest a little bit more.
  • Offer practical support such as laundry, cooking, and shopping etc.
  • Remind her that the postpartum depression is common and she is not alone.
  • Do not forget to cuddle her.
  • If you think it is getting serious, with the approval of the new mom, talk to midwife and ask for the right help.

I hope the partners will read these suggestions and put them in action.

Finally a congratulations on having a baby!!

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Car Parking Permit

Do you live in or moving the an area where parking is paid. Then you will need a parking permit.

Image copyright at TheMovingHumans – shutterstock images

Check availability of parking permit in your area
Check your permit area by filling street name and house number in the permit tool.
Also check the waiting list.

Rules for getting a parking permit
– You are registered at the address where you need the permit.
– The vehicle is registered in your name.
– For diesel cars, vehicle first registration must be after 2004.
– For cars running on fuels, vehicles first registration must be after July 1992.
– You cannot already have an available parking space.
– Parking permits are never available for new build projects.

Number of permits
In some areas, you can apply for maximum of two permits per address otherwise it is max one permit per address.

Where can you park
You can part anywhere within your permit area.

What do you need to apply for a permit
– DigiD for online application
– A valid ID for city office application
– A scan or clear photo of your vehicle documentation and registration certificate
– If there is parking space available at your home but you are unable to make use of it, you need a declaration stating there are no parking places available to you, signed by the owner or manager of the building.
– If you have a lease car, copy of the agreement.
– If you have a company car, copy of agreement, a declaration from employer and salary slips of two months old.

How can you apply
You can apply online via DigiD or,
You can take an appointment at city office and apply there with all the documents.

APK test

APK is also known as periodic technical inspection. This is a mandatory inspection in Europe to promote road safety and protect the environment.

image copyright at TheMovingHumans – shutterstock images

RDW will send you a reminder by post, 6 weeks before the expiry of the current APK. As a owner of the vehicle, you are responsible for having your vehicle inspected on time.

How to go for an APK?
If your vehicle requires an APK, book an appointment with the RDW approved company. The cost of inspection vary per company. You will receive an inspection report even in case of rejection.

How often should a APK be performed?
First time inspection? If your vehicle has not gone through inspections before, you can check the schedule here on how often there should be an APK.

Not a first time? If your vehicle has undergone an APK before, you can check the expiry here. The vehicle must be inspected prior to this date.

Change of fuel? If the fuel of your vehicle changes, your vehicle may need to be inspected more or less based on that.

Inspection Report
You will receive an inspection report on approval as well as on rejection. On the inspection report, it is stated if you need any repairs, rejected reasons and points of advice.
Points of advice are the defects that do not lead to a rejection, but which will require replacement or repair soon.
Always make sure you receive the inspection report. You will need this if you wish to appeal against the result of the inspection. Sometimes you also need it when driving the vehicle abroad.

Car : Register at RDW

So you have decided which car to buy for yourself, great !! Its not officially yours until you get the car registered at RDW.

Image copyright at TheMovingHumans – shutterstock images

What is RDW?
The Netherlands Vehicle Authority (RDW) contributes to making road transport in the Netherlands as safe, clean, economically viable and well-regulated as possible. The dutch government has assigned 4 tasks to RDW :

– Licensing : The licensing of vehicles
– Supervision & Control : Supervising companies and monitoring conditions of the vehicles.
– Registration & Information : Gathering, updating and managing data concerning vehicles.
– Issuing documents : documents which are required for vehicles such as driving license, APK forms etc.

Register at RDW
If you are selling a vehicle, you must put the registration in the new owner’s name. This must be done by the seller. Buyer must ensure this to make it official. After the registration, you will get a vehicle registration card (kentekencard) as a new owner.

What do you need as a seller for Registration transfer?
– A registration Code(in the letter) : You need this registration code when you sell (transfer), scrap, export, or demolish your vehicle.
– Kentekenbewijs card (Vehicle registration card)

How to register as a seller?
Your vehicle registration card is connected to a registration code. Half of the code is printed on the kentekenbewijs card and half of the code is printed in the separate letter. As a seller, take both to the post office. As a buyer, show ID and pay around Eur 10 to transfer the registration to the new owner. This can be done within a few minutes.

What will you as a buyer will receive after registeration?
You will receive a vehicle registration card when the vehicle is transferred.

Buying a car

Are you planning to buy a car within The Netherlands.

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There are three ways you can look for your dream car within the Netherlands.

  1. Buying a Used car
    You can search the car via Marktplaats.nl (dutch online marketplace).
    The biggest concern when buying a car is the condition of the used car. There are a few factors you need to check when buying the used card.

    – License plate check
    Check the license plate at RDW for free. This gives you a detailed information of known car details such as previous owners, APK history, if the car is stolen. These reports can be checked at ovi.rdw.nl/ or finnik.nl/. Car damage can also be checked on these site but that is a paid option.

    – APK check
    Always check the date of last APK(technical inspection). If it was long time back, you can request for a new APK. Sometimes owner pay for it or he can also request you to pay for new APK. However the cost of APK is quite cheap.

    – Bouwjaar check
    Make sure to check the year of manufacture of the car. The older the car, the less money it is !!

    – Dealer or individual
    I prefer to buy from an individual instead of a dealer. Dealers usually try to add some guarantee also to convince you to buy a car for which you have to pay a little extra. In my opinion, the cars from dealers usually asks some investments later after a period of 6 months or so.
    I usually prefer to buy from an individual owner from Maarktplaats. You can then negotiate well over the price. Go for a test drive before buying a car and ask as many questions as possible.

    – Big cities or far off places
    As per my experience, the sellers near and around big cities such as Amsterdam are not that trustworthy for the condition of the car. I usually prefer to go to far off villages usually near the Netherlands border to test drive and pick a car.

    – Young or Older owners
    I prefer to buy the cars from the owners who are of the age range between 40s to 50s. That’s specific to my preference.
  2. Buying a new car
    Considering to buy a new car, think of BPM tax. The first owner of the new car must pay the BPM tax (Bijzondere Verbruiksbelasting van Personenauto’s) to register the vehicle in their name. You can find more information of BPM tax here.
  3. Lease a Car
    Having a car on lease is also an option. The car is in your name but is owned by the leasing company. You take a subscription and pay per month. The subscription is based on the duration and number of kilometres. This option is mostly used by companies to offer car as a service to employers but you can also opt for it yourself if you want.

Buying a car : 7 things to do

Aha, you got a driving license and planning to buy a car? Here are our top 7 things to do or check while planning to buy a car in the Netherlands. Before that if you want to have a look at our post on the different ways to buy a car in the Netherlands, have a look here.

Image copyright at TheMovingHumans – shutterstock images

So lets have a look on the important things to know when buying a car.

  1. A driving License
    To be able to drive within Netherlands, you need to have a correct EU/EFTA driving license. You can have a look at our blog on how to apply the driving license. How to buy the car? You can follow our blog here.
  2. Register with RDW
    Found your car, its not officially yours until you get the car registered at RDW. Rijksdienst voor het Wegverkeer(RDW) is the national authority for vehicles and transport. They deal with the road tax and liability insurance.Read our blog on how to register.
  3. Road Tax
    If you live in Netherlands and owns a vehicle, you will have to motor vehicle tax (motorrijtuigenbelasting, MRB). You pay the vehicle tax by direct debit for each period of 3 months.You may authorize the Dutch Tax and Customs Administration to debit the motor vehicle tax on a monthly basis. You can see the tax rate here(in dutch). Some cars such as fully electric are exempted from paying MRB.
  4. Apply for a car Insurance
    There are usually three types of car insurance – Third Party Liability, Third Party Liability + Limited cover, Third Party Liability + comprehensive cover. You can compare the insurance on independer.nl for details.
  5. APK Test
    APK is also known as periodic technical inspection. This is a mandatory inspection in Europe to promote road safety and protect the environment. RDW will send you a reminder 6 weeks before the expiry of the current APK. Read our blog for more detailed information.
  6. Parking Permit
    Do you live in or moving the an area where parking is paid. Then you will need a parking permit. Some neighborhood have a free parking area while some requires a parking permit. There can also be a waiting list for the parking permit for some areas. Read our blog on how to apply for a parking permit.
  7. ANWB Subscription
    It is not mandatory however we recommend to take an ANWB subscription just in case your car broke in the middle of the highway. ANWB provides you the best roadside assistance not only within the Netherlands but outside as well. There are different packages to choose from costs you max Eur 20 per month depending on the package you choose.