Amsterdam Lawyer Dutch Labour & Employment Law


Dutch Labour & Employment Law

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Attorney Employment & Labour Law Amsterdam – Dutch Law firm

Our Dutch Labour Law and Employment Law attorneys in Amsterdam, The Netherlands are experts in Employment Contract Law and Employment Contracts. We have experience with the complexities of Dutch Labour Law and Employment Law. Labour & Employment laws are crucial to both employees and employers. Both foreign employers and employees (expat) in The Netherlands often have to deal with complex employment issues. The law firm WS Advocaten in Amsterdam is specializing in advice on Dutch labour law. Our Amsterdam attorneys represent and advise companies and expats on a wide variety of employment law issues. We have the experience in advising and litigating for companies and individuals (expats), to guide your employment issues to an appropriate resolution.

Call our employment lawyers: 0031 20 – 522 1999 

Employment law legal advice

We counsel clients effectively on labour law matters and represent them before regulatory bodies throughout The Netherlands. We act for both employers and employees and this experience enables us to see both sides of the argument. We understand what’s important and what motivates them both. Our employment solicitors in Amsterdam are on hand to meet your specific requirements.

Attorney Employment Law Amsterdam - Dutch Law firmDutch Employment Law

Dutch employment law offers a high level of protection for employees (expats) in The Netherlands, providing minimal rights for every worker in The Netherlands, local or foreign, including protection with regards to safety, minimum wage and restrictions on working hours. Since the Work and Security Act (entered into force on July 1, 2016) it has become more difficult to dismiss employees in The Netherlands.


Dismissals can be performed only in the cases expressly provided by the Dutch Labor Code (frequent sickness absence, poor performance, culpable conduct, disturbed working relations) and under observance of the procedure stipulated by the respective provisions. If these provisions are not observed, the dismissal decision might be declared void by a Dutch District Court. Dismissal is usually void when based on:

  • discrimination;
  • if the employee is pregnant or on maternity leave;
  • if the employee is a member of the works council;
  • if the employee is absent from work due to sickness.

Termination agreement / Settlement agreement

Our specialist employment solicitors in Amsterdam offer legal advice to employers and employees on Settlement Agreements. Mutual termination of the employment contract (by a settlement or termination agreement) is a recommended alternative to the complicated dismissal procedure in The Netherlands. Settlement Agreements can be used to resolve an ongoing dispute or to prevent a potential dispute from occurring. Settlement Agreements avoid lengthy and costly legal proceedings. We specialise in advice, negotiating and drafting Settlement Agreements. To discuss your Settlement Agreement needs with our Employment Lawyers, contact us.


Amsterdam Lawyer Dutch Labour LawDuration of Contract

A contract of employment may be for an unlimited or specified period of time. A contract of limited duration should include a term specifying the period of the contract. A limited contract will be terminated at the end of the specified period, unless the parties consent to extend the contract, or during a trial period (probation period).

Dismissal according to Dutch Employment Law

An impartial body (UWV or District Court) must first decide if dismissal on other grounds is allowed. For (business) economic reasons for example, when a reorganisation takes place or a (part of the) company closes down or relocates (UWV), or If the employee does not perform well or is no longer suitable for the job (District Court).

  • enforced redundancy
  • or redundancy on grounds of long-term incapacity (UWV; Employee Insurance Agency);
  • dismissal on personal or behavioural grounds (District Court/Cantonal Court).

Employment contracts may also be terminated:

  • by mutual consent (settlement agreement or termination agreement; Severance Packages)
  • or by instant dismissal for ‘an urgent cause’.

Termination can take place immediately without compensation in cases such as fraud or other crimes involving a breach of trust.

For collective dismissals (for economic reasons within a 3 month span and within one geographical work area) special rules apply, based on the European directive on collective dismissals.

Redundancy pay in The Netherlands

The transitional severance pay (“transitievergoeding”) was introduced in 2015. The “judge’s formula” (“kantonrechtersformule”) does not apply anymore in proceedings. As of 1 July 2015, employees who have been employed for at least 24 months can receive a statutory transition payment if their employment contract is terminated, rescinded or not extended on the employer’s initiative. In the event of dismissal by mutual consent, parties can also agree a severance payment. The transitional severance pay is considered to be wage subject to wage tax/national insurance contributions and the income-related healthcare insurance contribution.

Proceedings in Dutch Labour Law

In some cases, a court case will be required for a specific labour conflict:

  • summary proceedings
  • or a procedure on the merits.

This might involve

  • expulsion / suspension [schorsing / op non actiefstelling],
  • discharge [ontslag],
  • salary problems
  • or the Permanent Invalidity Benefit Act.

Choice-of-law clause in The Netherlands

The labour laws of the Netherlands apply even if the expatriate labor agreement has a choice-of-law clause. A choice-of-law clause defines expatriate’s legal rights while working overseas. The employment/labor laws of the host country apply even if the expatriate agreement has a clause that states the choice-of-law is abroad. The expatriate almost always enjoys a right at least to the minimum of local protections/benefits of the Netherlands. The employer should, in most cases, respect Dutch and international labour law.

Areas of Dutch Employment and Labour Law

We provide comprehensive advice and representation in all areas of employment and labour law including:

  • Preparation and assessment of employment contracts
  • Preparation and assessment of settlement agreements / termination agreements
  • Discharge / termination of labour agreement; advice before termination
  • Employment Law Litigation
  • Reorganisation
  • Probationary period
  • Expats
  • Discharge with immediate effect
  • Expulsion / suspension
  • Dissolution / termination of labour agreement Employee Insurance Agency procedures for work operation
  • Permission to terminate employment
  • Restraint of trade clause / client clause
  • Business transfers
  • Collective discharge
  • Illness, incapacity for work and reintegration
  • Employer liability
  • Redundancy
  • Payments / benefits (transitional remuneration)
  • Civil service law
  • Temporary employment agreement
  • On-call agreement / agreement for zero hours
  • Director under the articles of association (managing director)
  • Privacy
  • Freelance
  • 30% ruling (tax)

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Getting help with a Dutch Labour & Employment Law lawyer in Amsterdam

Please contact our lawyers if we can assist you with any labour relations matters whether you are an employer or employee. Our lawyers in Amsterdam will advocate on your behalf with strong and knowledgeable legal counsel. Our goal is to resolve legal matters through a tactful negotiation, if possible, and by decisive litigation when it is not. We give pragmatic, cost effective advice. For further information about Dutch Employment and Labor Law, please contact our Employment Contract lawyer in Amsterdam: 0031 20 5221999


Amsterdam Lawyer Dutch Labour & Employment Law

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