The Dutch social security system is one of the most comprehensive in Europe, but access to the Dutch welfare system is becoming more restrictive.
In the Netherlands, employees receive insurance cover for a wide range of eventualities, e.g. illness, maternity leave, disability, workplace accidents, occupational illness and unemployment. Schemes are also in place for old-age pensions, surviving dependants and child benefit.
What happens if you fall ill?
If you're self-employed, you don't have to insure yourself, but this means that you will not receive any money from the Dutch government if you fall ill. You can, however, take out voluntary insurance cover with the Employee Insurance Agency (UWV) if you so choose.
What happens if your employee falls ill?
As an employer in the Netherlands, you'll continue paying a sick employee's salary for a maximum period of two years. In any case, you'll have to pay 70% of his/her last-earned salary. This is, however, subject to a maximum daily wage (dagloon):
- 1st Year of Illness: Maximum daily wage supplemented to minimum wage level (minimumloon).
- 2nd Year of Illness: No minimum wage level guarantee applies.
Everyone in the Netherlands is legally obliged to take out health insurance under the Health Care Insurance Act (Zorgverzekeringswet, ZVW). Mandatory basic health care insurance plans cover standard health care services provided by general practitioners, hospitals, pharmacies, etc.