Legal and Regulatory Framework
Wet-en Regelgeving (Legal and Regulatory Framework) is the legal sub-site of the Dutch government's internet portal Overheid.nl.
It is managed by SDU Uitgevers, a private company, and falls under the responsibility of the finance ministry.
The site Wet-en Regelgeving gives users access to consolidated texts of Dutch laws that have been in force or repealed since 1 May 2002.
Users can search in four distinct categories: Laws (Wetten); General administrative orders (AMvB) and Royal decrees (Koninklijkebesluiten); Rules of procedure (Reglementvanorde); Ministerial orders (Ministeriëleregeling).
The consolidated texts available on Wet-en Regelgeving are not official texts. Only those texts published in official journals (Staatsblad for laws, Staatscourant for regulations) and by state authorities have official status.
Laws (Wetten): legal measures adopted according to the procedure stipulated in the Dutch Constitution (1815). They are voted on by parliament and then approved by the government.
General administrative orders (Algemene maatregel van Bestuur, AMvB): implementing decrees that are part of a law. They are decreed by the king or the government after consulting the Council of State (Raad van State) and gaining its approval. Their scope is general, and they come into force once they are published in the official journal.
Royal decrees(Koninklijk Besluit): officially these are decisions taken by the king, but in practice they are decisions taken by ministers given that they are the people who have political responsibility. Decrees tend to be specific in nature, and to relate to particular individuals. They might be about the appointment of a mayor or the award of a royal decoration. In the majority of cases they do not require the approval of the Council of State or the Council of Ministers.
Rules of procedure (Reglement van orde): stipulate operational rules for local councils, administrative councils, companies and so on.
Ministerial orders (Ministeriële regeling): orders made by ministers governing the enforcement of laws, or orders that come under the ministers' specific remit. They are subordinate to a law, which they serve to implement.