Continued payment of wages

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Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO
Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO

If you are temporarily unable to provide your employees with work or if you do not let them know when there is work, you must still pay them their wages. In some situations it is possible to exclude this obligation, but only temporarily.

Obligation to pay

You are obliged to pay your employee(s) if:

  • there is less work and this is at your account and risk, for example, when an order has been cancelled.
  • there is enough work, but you fail to call in your on-call employees
  • you have called in your on-call employees, but they are unable to do their work as a result of technical issues

Who do you have to pay?

The obligation to pay your employees if work is unavailable applies to:

No obligation to continue payment

You do not have to continue paying wages if you have excluded the obligation to continue to pay wages. You can arrange for this in the employment contract. However, you can only do so for the first 6 months of the contract. After this period this is only possible if it is part of the collective labour agreement (cao). You cannot exclude sick pay. The obligation to continue to pay wages also does not apply if:

  • your employee is on strike
  • your employee is absent without permission or proper reason (unauthorised absence)
  • your employee is regularly late for work
  • your employee is in detention

How much do you have to pay?

Regular and temporary workers are entitled to their regular pay. For on-call workers payment depends on their type of contract: a zero-hours contract or a min-max contract.

Insurance or compensation possible?

You cannot insure yourself against the obligation to continued payment. However, in some situations, the Employee Insurance Agency (Uitvoeringsinstituut Werknemersverzekeringen, UWV) may support you. This could be the case if, for example, the lack of work is the result of extreme weather conditions or a temporary transport ban.

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Questions relating to this article?

Please contact the Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO