Update work affairs

Minister Asscher has announced a number of measures to solve the bottlenecks in the labor market. What is important to you as an employer? We have listed a brief overview of the changes for you.

Employees of 23 years and older with a full-time employment contract are entitled to a minimum wage of € 1,537.20 per month from that date. That is 0.8% higher than in the first half of this year.

You can request a subsidy for practical learning
Since 2 June 2016, employers can again submit an application for the practical learning subsidy scheme. This subsidy is an allowance for the practical guidance of a pupil or student and is intended for employers who provide a practical or work place for:

  • VMBO students who follow a learning path for a basic vocational learning pathway;
  • MBO students who follow a vocational guidance course (BBL);
  • HBO students who follow a dual or part-time program in the field of technology, agriculture or natural environment;
  • PhD students or technological designers in training.

The amount of the subsidy amount depends on the duration of the period in which the employer gave guidance and the total number of subsidy applications submitted. The subsidy is a maximum of € 2,700 per year per realized practical or work place.

An employer applies for the subsidy afterwards via the website of the Netherlands Enterprise Agency.

This means that employers who have offered a practical or work placement in the 2015-2016 academic year can now apply for a subsidy for this. The application period lasts until 15 September 2016.

Plan for changing the rules for the transition of goods
The employee is not entitled to the transition allowance if an equivalent provision is provided for in the collective labor agreement. The parties to the CLA may then decide for themselves what the scope of the provision is, as long as it is aimed at finding new work. The change must take effect on 1 January 2018.

Employers receive compensation for the transitional compensation they have to pay in case of dismissal due to long-term illness. That compensation is paid from the General Unemployment Fund. There is a premium increase here. Although 1 January 2018 also applies to this change as the intended starting date, it may be retroactive.

Later full minimum wage from 21 years

The full statutory minimum wage will soon apply to every employee of 21 years and older. Now that’s 23 years and older. In addition, the minimum wage for employees up to 21 years goes up. The starting age for a full minimum wage changes step by step to 21 years. The minimum youth wage for employees aged 18, 19 and 20 is also increased step by step. The effective date is still unknown.

There will be an exception to these adjustments to the minimum wage for apprenticeships in the vocational guidance course of the MBO. This should prevent the wage costs for employers offering these learning workplaces from rising too much. For all employers, they also qualify for the low-income benefit (LIV) for 21- and 22-year-old employees. After all, these employees will earn 100% of the statutory minimum wage.

Intermediate period chain shortened to 3 months
From 1 July 2016, the minimum interim period that breaks the chain provision can be reduced from 6 months to 3 months in the collective labor agreement. A condition is that the activities are seasonal as a result of the weather conditions. This proposal was adopted by the Senate on 31 May.

Measures to ease wage payment

Employers and employees remain responsible for sufficient reintegration effort, but if the reintegration in accordance with the plan of approach has expired, employers will not be subject to a wage sanction. Even if no second track reintegration has been applied.

Employers can also apply for an early IVA inspection (now this can only be an employee). This is a benefit for people who can not or hardly work and whose chance is small that they recover. If the IVA benefit is granted, the employer can deduct this from the wages he has to pay in case of illness.

All insurers will soon have to use the so-called ‘forward looking’ way to determine the premium. This means that there are fewer fluctuations in the premium, as a result of which the employer knows what he is up to in the long term.

Only a ban on deductions as of 1 January 2017
The prohibition on deductions from the statutory minimum wage is postponed until 2017. In addition, there will be an exception to the prohibition for housing costs and the costs for the health insurance of employees. They can therefore pay employers directly from employees’ net salaries.

What about the quota of disabled people?

If it turns out that employers in the market sector and the government did not create sufficient jobs for disabled people in 2015, employers can for the first time be faced with a compulsory quota for employing disabled people in 2017. If an employer fails to comply with this quota, he must pay a quota levy in 2018. This quota levy is € 5,000 per unfilled job of 25.5 hours per week.

New rules extra work, piece wages and hourly wages
The rules for additional work, piecework and hourly wages are being changed. There will be a statutory minimum wage per hour that is the same for all employees. That hourly wage is then based on a 38-hour working week for all employees.