Plans for new rules on flexible contracts
As we mentioned in our recent article on the main work- and income-related changes in 2023, the government is planning to introduce various new rules to create greater certainty in the labour market. These are designed to benefit employers and employees alike.
No more zero-hours contracts
The Minister of Social Affairs and Employment, Karien van Gennip, announced in April that zero-hours contracts will be banned and that on-call workers will have to be offered a fixed number of hours. Zero-hours contracts are going to be replaced by a basic contract (details still to come) that will give employees more certainty about their income and working hours.
The rules on temporary employment contracts are also going to be tightened. This will include a ban on offering one temporary contract after another. After three consecutive temporary contracts, it will no longer be possible to wait six months and then offer someone a fourth temporary contract. Instead, employers will have to wait five years before offering the same person another temporary contract.
Continuing salary payments on sick leave
The rules applying to salaries of employees on sick leave are also changing. After a year, employers will then know whether they have to continue paying these employees’ salaries or whether their re-integration can be at a different employer.
A scheme enabling employers to retain employees in the event of a crisis going beyond normal business risks is also being worked on. Employees can then work somewhere else for up to six months or temporarily work fewer hours, while protecting their unemployment benefit rights. This change is in response to the corona crisis and lockdown, which hit many employers hard.
The plan is to introduce these new rules in the next few years.