- My employer has made a commitment to extend my contract or to extend hours. Can he come back to this?
A commitment or promise counts as an offer. Have you accepted this offer? Then this will lead to a new employment contract. Your employer cannot just come back to this.
- My employer has promised to extend my contract for a definite period, but is not doing so now. Is that allowed?
A promise to extend the contract is considered an offer. Have you accepted this offer? Then this will lead to a new employment contract. Your employer cannot just come back to this.
- My fixed-term contract will not be extended, is that allowed?
If your employer receives an allowance through the Emergency Bridging Measure for Job Retention, he may not fire you. He may choose not to renew your contract.
- Am I obliged to continue working now that my employment contract may end soon?
Yes, you are obliged to keep working. After all, your employment contract continues with all the rights and obligations arising from it, including the work obligation.
- Has your temporary employment not been extended while your employer previously indicated that your contract would be extended?
Then check whether the notice period has been taken into account. This means that your employer must inform you in writing at least 1 month before the end of the contract whether the contract will be extended and, if so, under what conditions the contract will be continued. Your employer must only comply with this notification obligation if your contract lasts 6 months or longer. In the event that your employer does not notify you in time whether your employment contract will be continued, your employer will owe you compensation. This allowance does not exceed your monthly salary and is calculated proportionally. For example: if your employer is two weeks late in giving notice, this means an allowance of two weeks' salary. Please note, you must claim this compensation within 2 months of the end of your contract. Also always check your employment contract to see whether a provision has already been included in which the notification obligation has already been included. If it is stated in your employment contract that your contract will not be extended after its expiry, the notification obligation has already been fulfilled.
- What is a temporary employment contract?
If you as an employee receive wages and are employed by an employer, then you have an employment contract. This is a reciprocal agreement between you and your employer, which means that the rights and obligations apply to both you and your employer. A temporary employment contract contains at least the same points as a standard employment contract, except that a temporary contract only applies for a fixed period of time. This can be for a few months, but also for a year or for the duration of a project.
- What is a zero hours contract?
A zero-hour contract is an employment contract with a deferred performance obligation, whereby it is not agreed how many hours will be worked per period. Your employer can call you if he needs you and you will only be paid for your hours worked. You do have to be available for calls from your employer and you are in principle obliged to start working if you are called up.
Competition and relationship clause
- Can the employer agree on a non-competition clause?
A non-competition clause is only valid if it has been agreed in writing and when you as an employee are of age.
The employer may include a non-competition clause in an employment contract for an indefinite period. A non-competition clause may only be included in a fixed-term employment contract if your employer provides written reasons for which compelling business or service interests make the non-competition clause necessary for you. If this motivation is missing in your temporary contract, the clause is therefore invalid (null and void). Please note that agreements may be made in your collective labor agreement that no competition clause may be included for specific positions, regardless of the duration of your contract. -> CLA article 4.7
- What is a non-competition clause?
A non-competition clause is a special provision in an employment contract that limits your options after the employment contract between you and your employer has ended. For example, a non-competition clause can limit you in the work that you are allowed to perform for a new employer, as well as in the sector or the type of company where you want to work.
- What is a relationship clause?
As an employer you hire employees. And those employees come into contact with your customers. In fact, when these employees leave the company, it is easy for them to take or approach those customers. To prevent this, an employer can include a relationship clause in your contract.
- Can my employer agree on a non-competition clause with me?
Yes. An employer may agree a non-competition clause with you, provided this is done under certain conditions. For example, a non-competition clause is only valid if it has been agreed in writing and when you as an employee are of age. Furthermore, a non-competition clause may only be included in employment contracts for an indefinite period.
- What can I do to get rid of my non-competition clause?
It may happen that you want to get rid of your non-competition clause. You want to work for another party, or maybe you want to start your own business. When making this decision, it is first of all important to check whether the included non-competition clause is legally valid.
- What is the difference between a non-competition clause and a ban on ancillary activities?
The main difference between a non-competition clause and a prohibition on ancillary activities is in fact that a ban on ancillary activities applies during your employment contract, where a non-competition clause applies after the expiry of your employment contract.
- How much can I earn in my job?
The law does not determine how much you should earn if you fulfill a specific position. If a collective labor agreement applies, your employer must adhere to the job classification and corresponding salary scales of the relevant collective labor agreement. Doesn't a collective labor agreement apply? Then in principle you can negotiate with your employer about the amount of your wages. This so-called wage negotiation comes from two sides. You as an employee naturally have your requirements and wishes, but your employer has those too. The only thing your (potential) employer must observe is the legal minimum wage (WML).
- What is the legal minimum wage?
To prevent underpayment, the law states that as an employee you should receive a statutory minimum wage, based on your age. This is further independent of your position and experience. The Statutory Minimum Wage (WML) is the gross wage that employees over the age of 21 must earn. The statutory minimum youth wages apply to employees between the ages of 15 and 20. These wages are adjusted twice a year, in January and in July.
- Am I entitled to continued payment of my wages during my break?
No. In principle, you are not entitled to wages during breaks. After all, you are not working. The Working Hours Act therefore does not include anything about continued payment during breaks.
- Am I entitled to continued payment of my wages if I am not working on a public holiday?
Contrary to what is often expected, there is no statutory regulation for employees that public holidays should be days off. In your employment contract, collective labor agreement or personnel guide you can check whether you are free on a public holiday and under what conditions your wages will continue to be paid. Whether your wages continue to be paid during public holidays therefore depends on your situation.
- Can I have the payroll tax credit applied to several employers at the same time?
No, this is not possible. You can only apply for the payroll tax credit at one employer. You must take this into account when completing the wage tax statement. It is best to apply the payroll tax credit to the employer where you receive the highest salary.
- I will be fired during my probationary period, is that allowed?
Yes, your employer may - without stating reasons - terminate the contract if you are in your probationary period. Still, you can try to start a conversation with your employer: perhaps you will find a way together in which you can continue to work there.
- What is probation?
You can see a trial period as an agreed period in which the employee and employer get to know each other. During this probationary period, both the employee and the employer can immediately terminate the employment contract.
- I have a temporary contract. Can a probationary period be included?
Whether a probationary period may be included in a temporary contract depends on the duration of your contract and whether a collective labor agreement or personnel guide applies. In principle, no probationary period may be agreed for fixed-term employment contracts of 6 months or less. This also applies to temporary employment contracts in which no end date has been agreed, such as for the duration of a project.
- I have a permanent contract. How long can the trial period be?
When you get a permanent contract or employment contract for an indefinite period, a trial period of a maximum of 2 months can be agreed. Your employer must record this in writing.
- My temporary contract is being extended. Can a trial period be taken up again?
If your temporary contract or employment contract is subsequently extended, then, in principle, a trial period may not be included in the renewed employment contract. There is one exception: if your subsequent employment contract involves a completely different position, for which different activities and responsibilities apply, then a probationary period may again be included.
- I first worked on a temporary basis and then got a direct contract with the client. Do I have a probationary period?
If you initially worked on a temporary basis, but are then immediately offered a contract by the client for the same position, no probationary period may be taken. The function is the same, the activities are the same and the client and you already know each other.
- I'm on probation. Do I have a notice period?
No. If you are in your probationary period, you can cancel your contract within the probationary period whenever you want. If you choose this, your employment will end immediately. Remember to cancel your employment in writing, otherwise your cancellation will not be valid.
- Can my employer adjust my working hours?
No, that is not allowed just like that. You can decide together to adjust your working hours, for example to ensure a better spread on the work floor.
- Does the allowance for on-call duty include hours worked?
If you are called during on-call duty and actually have to work, you should also be paid for the hours worked, possibly at special hours if applicable. This applies, for example, to working on a Sunday if it is not a working day for you at that time. The surcharge for on-call duty may, for example, include working hours if you are called during this shift and have a conversation of a few minutes.
- Where are the rules set about my working hours?
The rules regarding working hours are described in the Working Hours Act, as well as things about rest times, night shifts, standby shifts and working on Sundays. These rules apply not only to contracted employees over the age of 18 (and young people aged 16 and 17), but also to trainees, temporary workers and seconded workers.
- Can I work without taking a break?
Taking a break is mandatory. After 5,5 hours of work, you are officially entitled to a break. These 5,5 hours of work is actually the maximum number of hours that you are allowed to work without a break, because otherwise you will lose your sharpness. If you work longer than 5,5 hours, you are entitled to a minimum of 30 minutes break. If you work longer than 10 hours, you are entitled to a 45-minute break. Deviations from this scheme may be made in a collective labor agreement.
- Am I obliged to work on Sundays?
Whether an employer can oblige you to work on Sundays depends on your collective labor agreement, employment contract or internal company regulations. Working on Sundays is in principle on a voluntary basis, unless stated otherwise. Your employer can also agree with the works council or employee representation that you have to work on Sundays.
- Is my travel time also working time?
The travel time between your place of residence and your work is often not seen as working time. Only when there is a work assignment and you have to travel from one location to another at the request of your employer, is it often seen as working time. It is important that you check in your employment contract, collective labor agreement or internal company regulations whether agreements have been made about travel time if you have to travel a lot for work. Commuting is working time in the following cases:
- How about overtime?
There is no specific legislation for overtime. When your employer asks you to work overtime, you cannot simply refuse that request. The number of hours you are allowed to work is of course laid down in the Working Hours Act, but agreements regarding overtime are often laid down in your collective labor agreement, employment contract or internal company regulations.
- What can I do if I want to work part-time?
You want to work part-time. Is that possible just like that? Yes, in fact. The Flexible Working Act allows you to work fewer hours on the basis of a number of conditions. One of these conditions is that you submit a written request to your employer to adjust your working hours.