2 July 2020

Employment Bridging Emergency Fund (NOW 2.0)

Employment Bridging Emergency Fund (NOW 2.0)

Employment Bridging Emergency Fund (NOW 2.0) has been extended

 

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to extraordinary circumstances which have affected many organizations and employees in the Netherlands.

 

In order to alleviate companies in the Netherlands, the Dutch Government has implemented the Temporary Employment Bridging Emergency Fund (Tijdelijke Noodmaatregel Overbrugging voor Werkbehoud NOW) which is intended to mitigate the burden of employer’s costs due to the special situation of the COVID-19 pandemic, and cannot be considered part of the normal entrepreneurial risk of an organization.

 

For the months of March, April and May 2020 you could apply for NOW until 5 June 2020. The Dutch government has announced new and additional economic measures until 1 October 2020 to help businesses again during these difficult times. For the months of June through September 2020 you can apply for NOW 2.0 from 6 July 2020.

 

Requirements

Below are the following conditions set by the Dutch Government for NOW 2.0;

  • Expecting to lose at least 20% turnover over a period of 4 months (June through September 2020).
  • Business with Dutch and foreign subsidiaries may not count turnover loss from subsidiaries that do not pay Dutch social insurance contributions on wages.
  • The wage costs reference month is March 2020.
  • You pay your employees in full (100%).
  • You are using this compensation to pay wage costs.
  • The surcharge for the accrual of among others holiday allowance, pension contributions and other employer’s contributions will be 40%.
  • You will inform your employees or your works council if you have been granted the NOW 2.0.
  • If you dismiss employees on economic grounds you may have to pay back 100% of the compensation you received per employee.
  • If you want to dismiss 20 employees or more on economic grounds, you must have reached an agreement with the unions or other staff representation’s.
  • You are obliged to stimulate your employees to take retraining or reskilling courses.
  • You are not allowed to pay out bonuses or dividends, and you may not buy (back) your own shares.
  • You have to keep verifiable records of all information of relevance and make these records available until 5 years after this compensation has been granted.
  • You have to submit a payroll tax return under the 1964 Wage Tax Act. at the given times.
  • You must notify the UWV of anything that happens that may affect a decision to change, repeal or determine the compensation.
  • After your subsidy period, you must report your final turnover loss, accompanied by an auditor's report.
  • Whether you have applied for NOW in March or not, you can still apply for NOW 2.0
  • If you apply for the NOW 2.0 from 6 July for the first time, the starting date for the turnover loss you suffered can be from the months of 1 June, 1 July or 1 August 2020. If you already applied for NOW, the period of turnover loss must be continuous.
  • If you receive wage subsidy, you must notify the municipality that provides this that you are granted NOW.
  • You will need to submit a statement from an accountant for claims that exceed €125,000 and for advances that exceed €100,000.

 

How much compensation for the wages can you claim?

The compensation for the wages that you can claim depends on the turnover loss. You can claim a maximum of 90% of the wages. For example:

 

• If the turnover loss is 100%, the compensation will amount to 90% of wages;

• If the turnover loss is 50%, the compensation will amount to 45% of wages;

• If the turnover loss is 25%, the compensation will amount to 22.5% of wages;

 

Based on your application, the Employee Insurance Agency (UWV) will pay you an advance of 80% of the expected compensation. The actual turnover loss will be determined afterwards. When determining the definitive compensation, a correction can be made, if there has been a decrease in wages.

 

Please note that the NOW-scheme replaces the ‘unemployment benefit during short-time working’ (WTV-scheme).

 

How to apply?

You can apply for NOW 2.0 (in Dutch) for June through September 2020 from 6 July 2020. Unfortunately the procedure is currently only available in Dutch.

 

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or if you need assistance with this application procedure on +31 (0)85 0187471 or info@briddge.com