Fair compensation in Dutch Employment Law if an employer wants to dismiss an employee
A judge in The Netherlands can impose fair compensation on an employer who wants to dismiss an employee. This is according to Dutch employment law possible if the employer has committed serious misconduct prior to the dismissal. When should you, as a Dutch employer, pay severance pay and how does the judge calculate the amount? Our experienced lawyer employment law and dismissal law in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, gives legal advice on dismissal and severance pay to employees and employers.
Disrupted employment relationship
The subdistrict court in Alkmaar considered an employer’s request to dissolve the employment contract with an employee because of a disrupted working relationship.
The employee’s employment lawyer was of the opinion that there was indeed a disrupted working relationship, but that the employer itself was solely to blame. The employee’s behavior had never been discussed and the employer had refused the employee’s proposal for mediation. In short, according to the lawyer, the employer was deliberately looking for dismissal and wanted to get rid of the employee anyway.
Lasting and irreparable disruption in the employment relationship
The judge followed the employment lawyer’s advice and stated that there was indeed a lasting and irreparable disruption in the employment relationship. In short, the employer’s request to dissolve the employment contract was granted by the court in Alkmaar.
Seriously culpable act or omission by Dutch employer
The subdistrict court ruled that the dissolution of the employment contract (dismissal) was the result of seriously culpable acts or omissions by the employer.
By directing the termination of the employment contract in this way under these circumstances, the employer had acted in a seriously culpable manner.
The subdistrict court therefore awarded the employee, at the request of his lawyer, equitable compensation.
Level of equitable remuneration (fair compensation) to be awarded: all the circumstances of the case
In Dutch case law, principles have been formulated for determining the amount of equitable compensation to be awarded (including a ruling by the Supreme Court of 9 June, ECLI:NL:HR:2018:878 (Zinzia)). When determining the fair compensation, the subdistrict court must take into account all the circumstances of the case and that compensation must be appropriate. Ultimately, the point is to compensate the employee for the employer’s seriously culpable act or omission.
Compensation for the employer’s seriously culpable act or omission in The Netherlands
According to the judge in Alkmaar, the employee’s lawyer can be followed in his assertion that he would have been employed by the employer for at least another 2.5 years if the employment contract had not been terminated by the employee’s seriously culpable act.
When will employee be able to find other work?
It must also be assumed that, after the end of the employment contract, the employee will not only be entitled to unemployment benefit but will also be able to reasonably expect, taking into account good and bad chances, to find other work .
The fair compensation is thus set at an amount of € 225,000.00 gross. In the opinion of the subdistrict court, this also compensated the employee sufficiently for the seriously culpable acts and omissions of the employer. The employer also received a transitional payment of € 90,720.00.
Risk of being dismissed without a proper dismissal file
The employer must take into account that there really is a good file in case of dismissal. If there is no such file, as in this case, the judge may impose a fair compensation. Of course, this depends on all the circumstances, in particular the amount of the salary, the age of the employee and the (still to be expected) duration of the employment. Only in exceptional cases will a high compensation be imposed. The employee’s lawyer must be able to prove and substantiate the damage (in money) such as pension loss.
Unfairly laid off
If you believe you have been unfairly laid off, you should contact WS Lawyers in Amsterdam.
Our Dutch lawyer for employment and dismissal law in Amsterdam is specialized in legal advice in employment matters and fair compensation. For this please contact our experienced lawyer employment and dismissal law in Amsterdam mr. P.Chr. Snijders: 020-5221999.