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First corona verdict: employee is right

June 04, 2020
Woman writes in her notebook.

The Court of Amsterdam issued the first 'corona judgment' last week. An employee of a sandwich shop was paid only half of his salary by corona, while his employer did receive support through the NOW scheme. This resulted in the first case in a labor dispute caused by the corona crisis. The court ruled in favor of the employee. And that's good news for future, similar labor disputes.

The situation

The sandwich shop in Amsterdam had hired new employees on March 1, in preparation for the busy tourist season. That failed to materialize: two weeks later, our country went into lockdown and the business had to close. The employer received an allowance through the NOW scheme: enough to pay the salary of the old employees, not enough for the new ones - they are not included in the subsidy calculation. He thought it was a fair solution to halve the salary of all employees.


One of the employees filed a lawsuit, and was thus proved right by the judge. An employer may not unilaterally change the terms of employment. In addition, one of the conditions for NOW support is that the salary must continue to be paid in full. Your employer may at most ask you whether you are (temporarily) satisfied with less salary or holiday pay. You must explicitly agree to this.

Important precedent

It was therefore somewhat to be expected that the judge would agree with the employee. Still, it is an important precedent for similar labor disputes. Are you in the same situation? Make it work. If you don't know where to start, feel free to contact our experienced employment lawyers. They will be happy to explain what you are entitled to and can mediate between you and your employer.

More information

Do you have questions about the NOW scheme, your rights in this corona crisis or would you like to submit your situation to our experts? Do not hesitate to contact us. We are available every working day from 8.00 a.m. to 18.00 p.m., via and 0345 851 963.

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