WERKLOOSHEIDSWET [UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE ACT]
If you are unemployed and do not succeed in finding new employment, you may be entitled to an unemployment insurance [WW]-benefit. The Dutch Unemployment Insurance Act [Werkloosheidswet; WW] also considers partial loss of working hours as ‘unemployment’. This means that you will also be entitled to an unemployment insurance [WW]-benefit if your employer intends to turn down your employment by at least 5 hours.
You are entitled to a WW-benefit if you worked at least 26 weeks during the past 36 weeks. The amount of hours worked is not of interest here. However, you are not entitled to a WW-benefit if you receive a sickness or WIA-benefit.
The amount of your WW-benefit depends on your daily wage. The benefit is set at 75% over the first two months, followed by 70% of your daily wage.
The benefit will run for at least 3 and no more than 24 months, depending on your employment history. If you were employed for less than 11 years, you are entitled to 1 month’s WW-benefit for each calendar year worked. Calculation is different in case you were employed for 11 years or more. You get 1 month’s WW-benefit per calendar year over the first 10 years before January 2006. This is followed by 0.5 month’s WW-benefit for each calendar year after January 2006. Not in any case however will you receive a WW-benefit for more than 24 months. After 24 months you may qualify for a benefit under the Dutch Participation Act [Participatiewet], also named social assistance benefit [bijstandsuitkering].
After receiving a WW-benefit you will still be obliged to look for fitting employment. Active job application is one of your obligations here. You must have sent in at least four serious applications each four weeks. Another obligation for you is to share with the UWV all information about your situation. Consider for instance your income and past job applications. The UWV ascertains and verifies if you conform to these obligations. Your WW-benefit may be suspended or terminated if the UWV holds the view that you do not conform to your obligations, while unjustified payments may be reclaimed. The UWV may also impose a fine, or report you to the authorities.
Your WW-benefit will also be terminated by the UWV if you have found new employment. This will apply only if you have found employment which earns you more than 87.5% of your former monthly wage for two consecutive months.
If you object to the decision made by the UWV regarding your WW-benefit, you may file an appeal within six weeks. In that case the UWV is obliged to re-assess your application and arrive at a decision regarding your objection. If you should object to this decision on objection, you may appeal to the court. The ultimate remedy for you is to appeal to the Administrative Jurisdiction Division of the Netherlands Council of State [Afdeling bestuursrechtspraak van de Raad van State].
It is important for you to call in an expert to counsel you in your proceedings straight from the objection phase.
The lawyers at Elfi Letselschade Advocaat are Social Security Law experts and will be happy to counsel you.
If you should wish to learn more about other issues of social security law, consult the heading ‘Sociaal Zekerheidsrecht’ / Social Security Law on the website of Elfi Letselschade Advocaat.