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Posting workers inside the EU

This information is provided by:Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment, SZWMinistry of Social Affairs and Employment, SZWNederlandse versie

The European Union (EU) knows free movement of goods and persons. If you are posting your employees from the Netherlands to a country inside the EU to do a job, you normally have to meet certain obligations. One of the obligations is your duty to notify the government in the EU country you are posting your workers to.

Choose a country

When do rules apply to posting staff abroad?

You must comply with EU posting rules in the following situations:

  1. Your company has a contract with a business partner in another EU country. And your employee goes to that country to work for a certain period of time.
  2. You post your employee to a company of yours in another EU country.

There must always be an employment relationship (salaried employment) between yourself and your employee going abroad.

Notification for posted workers from the EU

You must register your employee in the EU country of destination. You must do this before your employee starts work. The reporting obligation allows countries to monitor if employers comply with the rules. For example, to prevent underpayment and poor working conditions. The reporting obligation for posted EU employees applies to more countries than the EU. Namely for all EEA countries plus Switzerland. The European Economic Area (EEA) includes all EU countries plus Liechtenstein, Norway and Iceland. The requirements and procedures differ from country to country. See in the tool above where you can apply for each country.

Who has to notify?

  • Dutch companies that move to another EU country temporarily with their own staff to perform a service.
  • Multinationals posting workers to one of their branch offices in one of the EEA countries or Switzerland.
  • Dutch employment agencies posting temp workers in an EEA country or Switzerland temporarily.
  • In some countries, self-employed professionals and business travellers also have to notify. This is stated with that country’s information. Use the tool with rules by EU country at the top of this page.

Social security and working in the EU

Your employee may remain socially insured in the Netherlands in some cases. Check in which country your employee has to pay social insurance. And whether you have to pay contributions in the Netherlands.

Working in another EU country temporarily

Does your employee work temporarily in another EU country? In that case, your employee will continue to be covered by the social security of the country where they worked before the posting. This also applies if you are going to work temporarily in another EU country as a self-employed professional.

Apply for an A1 certificate

Does your employee work temporarily in 1 or more EU countries? Then apply for an A1 certificate (a certificate of coverage). This certificate shows in which country you or your employee are insured. In some countries, you are not allowed to work without an A1 certificate. You may be fined by the local labour inspectorate. You have to apply for the A1 certificate for your employee.

When applying for the A1 document, you must indicate the start and end date of the posting. The maximum period on the form is 24 months.

Working in another EU country for a longer period

Is your employee working for you (posted) in an EU country for longer than 24 months? Or do you want to extend the period? If so, you can do the following as an employer:

  • Apply for an extension of the A1 document. This does not happen automatically.
  • Have your employee transferred to the host country's social security system.

What conditions of employment apply to posted workers?

Your employee is entitled to local terms and conditions of employment in the host country. These are the conditions that apply under that country's law or collective labour agreement (CAO). These apply throughout the period your employee works there. Are the working conditions in your home country better for your staff than those in the host country? Then you must comply with them during the posting.

Working conditions:

  • minimum rest periods
  • maximum working time
  • minimum number of paid holidays
  • payment (including all compulsory elements)
  • health and safety at work
  • protective measures for young people (under 18) and for pregnant women and women who have recently given birth
  • equal treatment for men and women
  • sleeping arrangements for employees. If these are provided by the employer.
  • allowances or reimbursements for the costs of travel, accommodation and meals. If these are necessary during the posting.

National contact points and websites

Each EU country has at least 1 contact point that can give you information about posting. Contact points cooperate and exchange information between countries. They check whether employers comply with working conditions during posting. And take action in case of violations. Find out about the different contact points and websites here. For more information, check the website of the host country.

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