Constitutional monarchy

The Netherlands is a constitutional monarchy. The position of the monarch is laid down in the Constitution. The Constitution lays down that the monarch and the ministers together constitute the government. The monarch is the head of state of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

Ministerial responsibility

Since 1848, the Constitution has laid down that the ministers, not the monarch, are responsible for acts of government and the ministers are accountable to parliament for government policy. The ministers are also politically responsible for what the monarch says and does. This is known as ministerial responsibility. It also means that the monarch cannot be forced to abdicate, whereas ministers can be forced to resign.