Rights and obligatons
If an employer abroad from the EU, EEA or Switzerland posts workers temporarily to the Netherlands, then those workers are entitled to the main terms and conditions of employment applicable in the Netherlands. This is regulated in the Terms of Employment Posted Workers in the European Union Act (WagwEU) and the Collective Labour Agreements (Declaration of Universally Binding and Non-Binding Status) Act (Wet Avv). The employer and the self-employed person also have a number of administrative obligations, including the duty to notify. This makes it easier to check whether businesses are observing the rules.
This concerns employers who:
- have a posting or assignment in the Netherlands with their own personnel;
- send employees from multinational companies temporarily to a branch of the same company or group in the Netherlands; or
make their workers available in the Netherlands as a temporary employment agency or other business, to work under the supervision and management of the service recipient.
Dutch labour legislation and labour agreement conditions
During the first 12 months of their posting, workers posted to the Netherlands are entitled to the ‘hard core’ of the terms and conditions of employment of Dutch labour legislation and of universally binding collective agreement conditions. After 12 months, posted workers are entitled to additional Dutch terms and conditions of employment. The employer can extend this period once by a period of six months, so that the posted workers are entitled to the additional terms of employment after 18 months. In addition, posted temporary agency workers are entitled to additional terms of employment from day one, and there are additional obligations for their employers.
You can find detailed information about the terms of employment to which posted workers are entitled here.
Under the WagwEU, businesses from the EU, EEA or Switzerland have a number of obligations:
- The duty to notify: employers and self-employed persons with a duty to notify from the countries above have a duty to announce their work in the Netherlands. They must make their notification before the work commences, through the Dutch online notification portal. Among other things, the notification must include information about all the workers who are temporarily posted to the Netherlands. The service recipient is required to review whether all foreign employees are correctly notified . If the notification is incorrect or missing, then the service recipient must report this through the notification portal.
- The obligation to have certain documents available at the workplace
- contracts of employment;
- summaries of working hours;
- A1 forms; and
- proof op payment.
On ending the work, these documents must remain available for five years; the Inspectorate SZW may request access to them.
- The obligation to appoint a contact person in the Netherlands as the point of contact for the Inspectorate SZW.
- The obligation to provide information: on request from the Inspectorate SZW, the Inspectorate must be provided with all information needed for enforcement of the WagwEU.
The Inspectorate SZW may impose an administrative fine for non-compliance with the duty to notify, the obligation to have documents available or the obligation to provide information.
Enforcement and monitoring
The Inspectorate SZW monitors the WagwEU and compliance with Dutch labour legislation. In the case of non-compliance, the Inspectorate SZW may impose a fine, for example if less than the Dutch minimum wage is paid or if insufficient or incorrect information is provided. The social partners monitor compliance with the collective agreement conditions.
If an inspection of the workplace or a check on other information held by the Inspectorate SZW reveals that the posting of foreign workers has not been correctly notified, then an administrative fine may be imposed on both the employer and the service recipient.
For self-employed persons, there is a limited obligation to make a notification of their services in the Netherlands. Self-employed persons with a duty to notify are obliged to have certain documents available at the workplace (proof of their identity, the identity of the service recipient and the identity of the person paying the wages). They also have the obligation to provide information. These obligations have been introduced in order to prevent false self-employment. False self-employment is when a self-employed person is engaged by a service recipient, but is actually in employment.