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In order to keep our clients up to date, we regularly organize employment law workshops on the latest news and/or changes in the law. We do this for HR managers, personnel consultants and regular clients. We also organize these inspirational sessions on request, tailored to your individual needs, and also meet our clients at their offices for a lunch session or working breakfast, for example. These sessions will often be for smaller groups about a subject that is particularly relevant to the client. Please contact us, without obligation, to discuss the possibilities for your organization.

We also regularly publish newsletters about developments in employment law. Most of them are available on the Dutch website.

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Unions and employers agreement on labor market reform07-07-2021

On June 1st, 2021 the social partners have reached an agreement in principle on labor market reform and work regulation. The agreement is part of an advice from the Social and Economic Council (SER). The agreement is an attempt to influence the formation talks about a new Dutch government. In this blog you can read about the main points, including the limitation of flexible work by prohibiting zero-hours contracts, temporary employment contracts of a maximum of three years and the position of self-employed persons.

The SER states that employment contracts for an indefinite period should be the basis for employment. The advice specifically states how other forms of contract (temporary work, on-call contracts, temporary contracts, self-employed persons) should be better regulated. These flexible contract forms should have a place in the labor market during ‘peak and ill’, but should no longer be used to prevent competition on employment conditions.

Zero hour contracts

On-call (including zero-hours) contracts will be abolished and replaced by basic contracts with at least a quarterly hour standard. This makes the periodic wage of an employee predictable. An exception is made for pupils and students (whose main activity is their education or study): they will receive a contract that is comparable to the current system.

Temporary workers

  • Phase A (the so-called agency clause: the unlimited use of temporary contracts and exclusion from the obligation to continue to pay wages) is legally set at one year (currently one and a half years). The current possibility to extend this term by collective agreement will be taken out.
  • In phase B, a maximum of six temporary contracts can be concluded for 2 years (currently six contracts in 4 years).
  • To prevent agency work from being used to reduce labor costs, the total employment conditions of the temporary agency worker from the first working day must be at least equivalent to the total employment conditions of own employees in equivalent positions.
  • There will be a mandatory certification of employment agencies and other parties that mediate in employment.

Temporary contracts

Just like now, three temporary contracts may be entered into for a maximum of 3 years. The interruption period of six months however will be taken out, so that permanent temporary work with the same employer is no longer possible (except for schoolchildren and students for seasonal work).

Self-employed

  • Under an hourly rate of approximately EUR 30 to EUR 35, the starting point is an employment contract and wage tax must therefore be paid. It is up to the client to prove to the court that this assumption is incorrect in a specific case.
  • In principle, nothing changes at higher rates. Disagreements about the nature of the employment relationship are settled under civil law between contracting parties. The web module that is now in the pilot phase (see our blog of December 18, 2020) can help to gain clarity in advance.
  • Self-employed persons are obliged to insure themselves against incapacity for work and the agreements from the pension agreement ('Pensioenakkoord') for self-employed persons are followed.

Flexibility for employers

In business economic circumstances, employers can send their employees home up to 20% of the time. In consultation with decentral social parties, employers can be compensated for 75% of the wages for less work that day from the government. In this way, the employee retains the full salary and without his unemployment benefits being affected.

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The Social Agreement (“Draft Advice Social-Economic Policy 2021-2025”) can be found via this link on the SER website.

The Social Agreement has yet to be presented to the supporters of the employers' and employees' associations. If approved, we will host a webinar to further explain the plans.

If you have any questions about the agreement, please contact us.

Saskia Le Noble

07-07-2021Unions and employers agreement on labor market reform

On June 1st, 2021 the social partners have reached an agreement in principle on labor market reform and work regulation. The agreement is part of an advice from the Social and Economic Council (SER). The agreement is an attempt to influence the formation talks about a new Dutch government. In this blog you can read about the main points, including the limitation of flexible work by prohibiting zero-hours contracts, temporary employment contracts of a maximum of three years and the position of self-employed persons.

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07-07-2021Full transition payment for partial continuation of employment contract

In 2018, the Supreme Court ruled (in the so-called 'Kolom judgment') that an employee may be entitled to a partial transition payment in the event of partial termination of the employment contract. But what happens to the right to a transition payment if an employment contract is not officially “terminated” and the parties only implicitly make an agreement that fewer hours will be worked? This question recently has been considered by the court of Central Netherlands (judgment 30 April 2021 Central Netherlands District Court).

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29-10-2020Can an employer require from his employees to wear a face mask?

The Dutch government urgently advises to wear a face mask in public indoor spaces. There is no legal obligation (yet) to wear a face mask, but many employers are considering to introduce a face mask obligation into the workplace. What about from an employment law perspective?

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29-10-2020What employers need to know about working from home

As a result of the coronavirus, a large part of the employees has been working from home for more than six months. Now that the number of infections is increasing again, it seems that this will last for a longer period. This blog covers a number of employment law aspects of long-term work from home, such as health and safety rules, the employee’s freedom of choice with regard to working from home, the monitoring of the work by the employer and the reimbursement of (additional) costs. Finally, attention is paid to the phenomenon of ‘home working arrangement’, because we notice that many employers consider to introduce such arrangement.

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06-07-2020Does the employee have a right to working from home in connection with Covid-19?

Many companies let their employees work from home as much as possible in recent weeks in connection with the corona crisis. Employees are slowly returning to the office now that the virus seems to be under control. Companies will have to ensure that work in the office can be carried out in a safe manner and must therefore take measures to prevent the spread of the virus at work as much as possible. Suppose the employee does not like to return to the office. Can he or she refuse to go back to the office, given the applicability of Dutch employment law? In a case that was brought before the Gelderland District Court, the judge ruled on June 16, 2020 that this was not allowed.

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