Reduction or withdrawal of reception conditions


Country Report: Reduction or withdrawal of reception conditions Last updated: 08/04/22


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Article 10 RVA sets out the grounds for restricting or, in exceptional cases, withdrawing reception conditions. These include cases where the asylum seeker:

  • Has left the reception centre without informing the COA or without permission, if permission is required;
  • Has not reported to the reception centre for two weeks;[1]
  • Has failed to respond to COA requests for information for two weeks, including personal details required for registration in the centre;
  • Has failed to appear for the personal interview with the IND for two consecutive times;
  • Has lodged a subsequent application after a final decision;
  • Has concealed financial resources and therefore improperly benefitted from reception;
  • Does not pay back a fee paid to him or her for childbirth costs;
  • Seriously violates the house rules of the centre;[2] Has committed a serious form of violence to asylum seekers staying in the centre, persons employed in the centre or others.

Measures that can be imposed in the aforementioned circumstances are sanctions and preventative measures (Reglement Onthoudingen Verstrekkingen (ROV)). The ROV measures entail an actual reduction or withdrawal of material reception conditions e.g. suspension of the financial allowance or accommodation. Before imposing a measure, the asylum seeker must be heard. Following the Haqbin judgment,[3] the COA is not allowed to completely withdraw material reception as a sanction. The State Secretary therefore announced that instead of temporarily withdrawing material receptions, ‘time out rooms’ will be introduced in AZCs as of the 1st of July 2020.[4] COA is still using the ROV measure of completely withdrawing material reception and financial allowanced, thereby announcing that if the asylum seeker does not have a place to go he can stay in a ‘time-out room’. During 2020, this measure was imposed 124 times.[5] However, these numbers do not differentiate between before and after the introduction of the ‘time-out rooms’.

Asylum seekers aged 16 or more, who seriously violate the house rules of reception centres or otherwise demonstrate aggressive behaviour, may also be transferred to Enforcement and Surveillance Location (Handhaving en toezichtlocatie, HTL) in Hoogeveen at a former prison building.[6] Placement in the HTL is accompanied by a freedom-restricting measure on the basis of Article 56 of the Aliens Act.[7]

[1]  Article 19(1)(e) RVA. This provision sets out the obligation to report to the centre once a week.

[2] Article 19(1) RVA.

[3] CJEU, C-233/18, 12 November 2019.

[4] Letter of the Secretary of State, Parliamentary Documents 19637, nr. 2642, 1 July 2020.

[5] Ministry of Justice and Security, Overview of Incidents 2020, 7 July 2021, available in Dutch at:, 16.

[6] Article 1(n) RVA.

[7] Article 5 Reception Act.

Table of contents

  • Statistics
  • Overview of the legal framework
  • Overview of the main changes since the previous report update
  • Asylum Procedure
  • Reception Conditions
  • Detention of Asylum Seekers
  • Content of International Protection
  • ANNEX I – Transposition of the CEAS in national legislation