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Balanced Labor Market Act (WAB). What do you actually need to know about that?

A lot will change on 1 January 2020, including the dismissal law, the chain scheme and the rules for on-call workers and payrollers. Then the new Labor Act, the Balanced Labor Market Act, will come into effect. With this, the cabinet wants to reduce the gap between permanent and flexible work. Lost the overview of all changes? We understand. That is why we list all changes again. Without judgment, in understandable language and especially for you. The employee. Just so you know where you stand.

Ground for dismissal

Does your employer want to fire you now? Then he must submit one of the eight legal grounds for dismissal and substantiate why your dismissal is justified. For example, does he think you are sick too often? Then he must prove that this is really the case, and prove that it harms business operations. With the WAB, a ninth ground for dismissal is added, the so-called 'cumulative ground': your employer can add up several grounds for dismissal in order to reach dismissal. So it becomes easier to fire employees.

Transition fee

If you are fired, you are entitled to a transition payment. In most cases you will be entitled to this statutory severance payment after two years of employment. The amount of the compensation? It depends on your gross monthly salary during your last contract: multiply the number of half years of service by a certain part of your last salary, and you have the amount of your compensation. Now this part is even higher if you have been employed for more than ten years or are older than 50 years. From 1 January you will always receive the same: 1/3 of your gross monthly salary per full year of service. In many cases, the transition payment is lower as a result. You will be entitled to it from your first working day.

Chain regulation

Do you have several temporary contracts in a row, with the same employer? Then there is a chain. Now this chain may be three contracts long, within a maximum of two years. If the chain becomes or lasts longer, you will in most cases automatically receive a contract for an indefinite period. This chain scheme will change from 1 January: you may still receive three temporary contracts, but these may be spread over three years. It therefore takes longer before you are entitled to a permanent contract. But beware: your CLA may contain other agreements, so check these carefully.

On-call contract

Do you have a zero hours or min-max contract? Then nothing is legally determined about your contract form. This will change: there will be a clear description of the on-call agreement in the Civil Code. In addition, there will be a few rules in the law. For example, your employer must call you for work at least four days in advance, and the same term applies for canceling work. Does your employer not cancel your shift on time? Then you will get paid. And if your on-call work lasts twelve months, your employer must make you an offer with fixed hours.

Unemployment insurance premium

In the Netherlands, employers pay unemployment insurance contributions for each employee. The amount depends on the sector. From 1 January, this premium will be the same for each sector, and the amount depends on the type of contract. A fixed-term contract is 'more expensive' for an employer than a contract for an indefinite period. This is of course primarily a matter for your employer. But it is possible that you will notice the expected personnel problem in seasonal sectors. Think of the fruit, vegetable sector and (beach) catering industry.


Do you work as a payroller for an organization? Then from 1 January you will receive the same or comparable employment conditions as colleagues who are permanently employed. From salary to thirteenth month, profit sharing and holidays. From 2021, there will also be an adequate, comparable pension scheme for payrollers.

 Read more in our whitepaper

Would you like to know more about the new labor law? Then ask for our free whitepaper On. You need to know this about the Balanced Labor Market Act. For questions, please contact our Service Center: 0345 851 963 or