18 May 2021

Dutch Labor Law rights during COVID-19

Dutch Labor Law rights during COVID-19

Recently, we were celebrating Labor Day, May 1st, in the Netherlands. We would like to share with you the 3 most concerning issues and applied to them laws that are protecting Dutch labor rights during Covid-19. These regulations have played a big role during the pandemic, and have supported a lot of employees, employers, and companies.


  1. Prorated contribution from the government for wage payments

During Covid-19 and following government regulations, a big number of companies have experienced revenue loss. Companies were no longer allowed by the government to reduce work time for their employees, as a solution for the revenue loss. However, companies that were experiencing more than 20% loss could apply for the prorated contribution from the government. For instance, in case a company experienced a 100% revenue loss, the government could financially cover 90% for wage payments. With this contribution, employers can continue to pay their employees with permanent and flexible contracts and keep them in employment. This way, as many as possible jobs are preserved.


  1. Sickness benefits

According to the government’s instructions during Covid-19, employees who can work from home, should work from home and be paid normally. In case employees have Covid-19 symptoms they are allowed to receive sickness benefits. For that, the general rules about continued payment of wages in the event of illness are applicable. This means that an employee is entitled to at least 70% of his gross monthly salary during his illness for two years.


  1. Emergency leave + short-term care leave

In case of an urgent and/or unexpected situation, the Dutch labor law allows employees to take emergency leave for a couple of hours up to a couple of days. A request for calamity leave or short-term non-attendance leave is submitted to the employer as soon as possible. The request must indicate how long the employee expects the leave to last. The employer cannot refuse a reasonable request for calamity leave or short-term non-attendance leave.

In addition to an emergency leave, employees are also able to take a short-term or long-term care leave. If an employee wants to take care of a sick person in his close vicinity, he is entitled to short-term care leave. A condition is that the sick person needs care, for example for a child that has suddenly become ill at school and that he needs to pick up. During short-term care leave, the employee receives at least 70% of his/her salary for a maximum of 2 working weeks per year.

If someone close to the employee suffers from a life-threatening illness, such as corona, and the employee wishes to care for this person, he will be entitled to long-term care leave. This requires that the care is necessary and that the employee is the only one who can give this care. However, during long-term leave, the employer does not have to continue to pay his salary.


Would you like to know more? Please contact our office at +31 (0) 85 0187471 or via info@briddge.com