At the end of 2008, 1.2 million households in the Netherlands were claiming at least one social security benefit. This means that one in five households with at least one person aged 15-65 years receives survivors’ benefit, income support, unemployment benefit or disability benefit. State old age pensions are not included in these figures.
Households with one or more benefits by household type, 31 December 2008
Most claimants one-parent families and single households
Most of these social security benefits are paid to single households. Over half of single people claiming benefit receive disability benefit.
One-parent families claim relatively most social security benefits. Just over one third of these families were claiming benefit at the end of 2008, nearly half of them income support. Couples are relatively least likely to claim a benefit, although as many as one in five couples without children and one in seven couples with children do claim social security.
Number of households claiming one or more social security benefits, 31 December 2004 and 31 December 2008 1)
Large drop in the last four years
The number of households in the Netherlands receiving survivors’ benefit, income support, unemployment benefit or disability benefit fell by 21 percent between 31 December 2004 and 31 December 2008. In December 2004, one in four households were claiming one of these benefits, at the end of 2008 this was one in five households. The decrease is connected with the both the improved economic situation and various changes in the relevant legislation. The largest relative decrease was for households claiming unemployment benefit.