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Government information for entrepreneurs

Corona crisis: temporary emergency bridging measure NOW

This information is provided by

Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO

Do you employ staff, and expect a turnover loss of at least 20%? You can claim a compensation towards wages for a period of 3 months from NOW: Temporary Emergency Bridging Measure for Sustained Employment (Tijdelijke Noodmaatregel Overbrugging voor Werkbehoud NOW). You can claim a maximum of 90% of wages, depending on how much turnover you lose.

Please note: You can apply for this compensationExternal link (in Dutch) from 6 April 2020 9.00 am through 31 May 2020. If you fulfil the requirements you will get an advance payment within 2 to 4 weeks.

The NOW-scheme replaces the unemployment benefit during short-time working (wtv). You can no longer apply for unemployment benefit during short-time working

What is NOW?

Due to extraordinary circumstances, like the coronavirus, you have less or no work for your employees. You can claim NOW for a substantial compensation for their wages. In this way, you can continue to pay employees with permanent and temporary contracts. The Employee Insurance Agency (UWV) will pay you an advance.

You can claim the compensation for 3 months, with the possibility to extend it for a further 3 months. You can claim the compensation for turnover you have missed from 1 March onwards.

Other costs for employees in addition to wages are also compensated with the NOW. This applies to costs such as pension premiums (both the part for employees and employers), employee insurance premiums and the accrual of holiday allowance. Only the accrual of holiday allowance of the months March, April and May is compensated. UWV applies the same surcharge of 30% on top of the wages for all employers. Employees who were not yet employed in January do not count toward the wage bill for calculating the compensation.

You may also use the NOW if your company experiences turnover loss due to other causes than the coronavirus outbreak.

Conditions if you want to claim NOW

  • You expect to lose at least 20% turnover. Use the tool to help calculate your turnover lossExternal link (in Dutch).
  • If you claim NOW, you will not be allowed to request permission to dismiss employees on economic grounds during the period for which you receive compensation.
  • You can retract a request for dismissal.
  • You are obliged to keep your wage bill at the same level as much as possible. This means you have to pay your employees in full (100%).
  • You must use this compensation to pay wage costs.
  • You must inform your employees or works council if you have been granted this compensation.
  • You have to keep verifiable records of all information of relevance. You must be able to make these records available until 5 years after this compensation has been granted.
  • You must notify UWV of anything that happens that may affect a decision to change, repeal or determine the compensation.
  • If you receive wage subsidy, you must notify the municipality that provides this that you are granted NOW
  • You claim compensation for 3 months, with the possibility to extend it once, for a further 3 months (extra conditions may apply to an extension application).
  • NOW is compensation for turnover you have missed from 1 March 2020 onwards.
  • You will need to submit a statement from an accountant for claims that exceed a certain amount (the height of which is yet to be established).

How much compensation for wages can you claim?

The compensation for wages 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.

How to apply?

You can apply from 6 April 2020, 9:00 am, through 31 May 2020, for the months March, April and May 2020.

Go to the application pageExternal link on the Employee Insurance Agency website (in Dutch) . Make sure you have these data at hand:

  • your company details: name, address, telephone number, email address, contact person.
  • if you had previously applied fot short-timeworking benefit (wtv): your case number. You can find this on the confirmation of receipt sent to you by the ministry. The number is 5 or 6 digits long.
  • the payroll tax number. You must apply for each payroll tax number separately.
  • the 3 months in which you expect to make a turnover loss of at least 20%.
  • the expected percentage of turnover loss during that period. Use the tool to help calculate your turnover lossExternal link (in Dutch).
  • the account number plus the name. This has to be the account number used by the Dutch Tax Administration to refund payroll tax paid in ecxess. UWV will only transfer the compensation into that account.

Please note: you can only enter a Dutch address and account number.

Part of the application is a declaration of intent. In it, you have to state that:

  • you have entered correct and complete information.
  • you understand and accept that the General Administrative Law Act (Algemene wet bestuursrecht, Awb) provisions apply to your application.
  • you are authorised to represent the company.
  • no suspension of payment or bankruptcy has been filed for.
  • you agree to storing and processing of the data, in accordance with the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation).

If you fulfil the requirements you will get an advance payment within 2 to 4 weeks.

Can you still apply for unemployment benefit during short-time working (wtv)?

No, that is no longer possible. If you have already applied for wtv, you will be notified. The Employee Insurance Agency (UWV) will treat your wtv application as a claim for NOW compensation. Read why the wtv has been cancelled and what you should do if you have already been awarded wtv.

KVK Advice Team for questions about corona

Is your business at risk due to corona? Contact the Netherlands Chamber of Commerce KVK for advice on how to act. You can reach the KVK Advice Team on 0800 2117, Mon-Fri from 8:30 to 17:00 hours. Calling from abroad? Dial+31 (0)88 585 2222.

This information is provided by

Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO