Saturday 26 September 2020

Tax office helpline fails consumer test for sixth year in a row

Photo: Joep Poulssen

People working for the Dutch tax office helpline BelastingTelefoon have been given a score of just 4.8 out of 10 for their knowledge of tax issues by the consumers association Consumentenbond.

The consumer watchdog assesses the expertise of helpline staff every year and this is the sixth year in a row that they have failed to properly answer five simple questions, the association says.

For example, the wrong answers most call centre staff gave about a special tax break for single pensioners could cost the elderly €876, the association points out. It also criticised the failure of call centre staff to answer questions it had highlighted as problematic two years ago.

The tax office has admitted that its call centre staff should be better trained and said it has brought in more specialists to deal with difficult questions.

Thank you for donating to

The team would like to thank all the generous readers who have made a donation in recent weeks. Your financial support has helped us to expand our coverage of the coronavirus crisis into the evenings and weekends and make sure you are kept up to date with the latest developments. has been free for 14 years, but without the financial backing of our readers, we would not be able to provide you with fair and accurate news and features about all things Dutch. Your contributions make this possible.

If you have not yet made a donation, but would like to, you can do so via Ideal, credit card or Paypal.