National Archives of the Netherlands (Ministry of Education, Culture and Science)

Archival law & regulations for government organisations

The way in which government organisations musy comply with their preservation and management responsbilities is precisely described in a number of different laws and regulations. In principle, it does not matter if the information is digital or not. The following laws and regulations specifically address archives:

  • 1995 Public Records Act (Archiefwet)
  • 1995 Decree on Public Records (Archiefbesluit)
  • Ministerial Regulation (Archiefregeling 2009) 

Note: A new Ministerial Regulation became effective on April 1st, 2010. It integrates the existing three Ministerial Regulations into one single revised document.

Other laws and regulations concern the management and use of government information or data more generally. They concern, for example, the publication of information or proper protection of sensitive and personal information:

  • Open Government Act (Wet openbaarheid van bestuur)
  • Personal Data Protection Act (Wet bescherming persoonsgegevens)
  • Police Records Act (Wet politieregisters)
  • 1990 Decree on Information Services in the Civil Service (Besluit informatievoorziening in de Rijksdienst 1990)
  • 1994 Regulatory Decree on information security in the Civil Service (Besluit Voorschrift informatiebeveiling Rijksdienst 1994)
  • Regulatory Decree on information security in the Civil Service - exceptional information (Besluit voorschrift informatiebeveilinging Rijksdienst  bijzondere informatie)
  • Decree on the transfer of archives from Central Government (Besluit archiefoverdrachten rijksadministratie)
  • General Administrative Law (Algemene wet bestuurrecht)
  • Electronic Traffic Administrative Law (Wet elektronische bestuurlijk verkeer)
  • Electronic Signatures Law (Wet elektronische handtekeningen)
  • Access to European Union documents (Openbaarheid van documenten van de Europese Unie)

All of the above laws and regulations can be downloaded (in Dutch) from the Dutch governement website.