Changes to Dutch labor law for the year 2022

Once again, Dutch labor law was subject to some significant changes. Some of these changes have already come into force on January 1, 2022, while others will only take effect at a later date. In the following, we summarize the most important changes for labor law/HR practice. The article is meant for readers who are already familiar with basic features of Dutch employment law – our Dutch employment law colleagues would be happy to provide additional explanations.

Regulations applicable since January 1, 2022

  • Increase in the statutory minimum wage: The statutory minimum wage for employees aged 21 and over in full employment was increased to EUR 1,725 gross per month, EUR 398.10 gross per week and EUR 79.62 gross per day.

Note on the situation in Germany: It is known that the statutory minimum wage is also to be increased in Germany. The SPD parliamentary group in the Bundestag tweeted on January 21, 2022: "We are increasing the minimum wage to twelve euros! This is what we were elected for and we are now implementing it as quickly as possible. @hubertus_heil has brought the corresponding law today on the way 😊" In the associated draft law of the responsible Federal Minister of Labor Hubertus Heil it is here to say: "The minimum wage applicable to all employees will be increased once to a gross hourly wage of 12 euros on October 1, 2022." What is unusual about this increase, in any case, is the big jump from Euro 9.82/hour (since January 1, 2022) to Euro 10.45 (scheduled for July 1, 2022) to then Euro 12.00. What is also unusual is that politics intervenes in the procedure that is normally under the sovereignty of the minimum wage commission. According to the Federal Ministry, 6.2 million employees are to benefit from the increase, which will lead to higher wage costs of around EUR 1.63 billion in the year 2022. Subsequent increases in collectively agreed wages just above the minimum wage mark could follow.

  • Act on a Balanced Ratio of Women and Men at the Top of Companies: The entry into force of this Act is intended to achieve a better and more balanced ratio of men and women on the management or supervisory boards of B.V.s (Besloten Vennootschappen, limited liability companies under Dutch law) or N.V. s (Naamloze Vennootschappen, joint stock companies under Dutch law). According to the law, a supervisory board must consist of at least one-third male members and at least one-third female members. Further, large companies must set appropriate and ambitious equality targets and report annually to the SER (Sociaal-Economische Raad or Social and Economic Council - this is an advisory body in which entrepreneurs, employees and independent experts work together to reach agreement on important socio-economic issues).

Note on the situation in Germany: With the entry into force of the FüPoG II, statutory regulations were also established in Germany for the appointment of women to the management boards of listed companies that are also subject to parity co-determination. The FüPoG II also includes changes to the setting of target figures. Further details here.

  • NOW5 scheme: Employers have until January 31, 2022 to invoke the NOW5 scheme (NOW = Noodmaatregel Overbrugging Werkgelegenheid = Temporary Emergency Bridging Measure for Sustained Employment (the Dutch subsidy scheme for companies affected by the Pandemic)) by submitting a request for advance payment through the UWV (Uitvoeringsinstituut Werknemersverzekeringen, the Dutch agency responsible for employee matters). The following changes were made to the provisions of NOW5: The payroll exemption has been increased to 15%, assistance under NOW5 can also be claimed in non-COVID-related circumstances, and short-time work can also be notified while NOW5 is being claimed (Werktijdverkortingsregeling, "WTV").
  • Change in the payroll threshold for small and medium-sized employers: From 2022, the payroll threshold for small and medium-sized employers will be 25 times the average wage per employee (EUR 882,500). The contribution for the Dutch Work Reintegration Fund (Werkhervattingskas, "Whk") of large employers with a payroll of EUR 3,530,000 or more in the 2020 contribution year will be fully differentiated in 2022. The Whk contribution for medium-sized employers with a contribution total between EUR 882,500 and EUR 3,530,000 will be set partially differentiated and partially industry-specific. For small employers with total contribution income of up to EUR 882,500, the Whk contribution will be determined entirely by industry.
  • Changes to the amount of the Work Disability Fund (Arbeidsongeschiktheidsfonds, "Aof") premium differentiated by employer size: Until January 1, 2022, the amount of the Aof contribution was the same for all employers. As of January 1, 2022, the amount of the Aof contribution will be differentiated according to the size of the respective employer. For small employers (premium income in 2020 up to EUR 882,500), the premium will henceforth be 5.49%, while the premium for medium and large employers (premium income in 2020 above EUR 882,500) will now be 7.05%.
  • 30% rule for WW contribution: As of January 1, 2022, an employer must recalculate the contribution for the Unemployment Act (Werkloosheidswet, "WW") if and when an employee works 30% or more hours within a calendar year than contractually agreed for that year, unless the number of contracted hours exceeds 35 hours per week. Due to the Covid 19 pandemic, the 30% rule and associated recalculation requirement was temporarily inapplicable in 2020 and 2021.
  • Change in contributions for statutory reintegration provisions: Contributions for the Reintegration Scheme for Partially Employable Persons (Werkhervatting Gedeeltelijk Arbeidsgeschikten, "WGA") and the Health Insurance Act (Ziektewet) increased. The average WGA premium increased by 0.06% to 0.84%. The premium for the Health Insurance Act increased by 0.10% to 0.68%. The contribution rate payable by the employer depends on the size of the company.
  • Works Councils Act: In the future, temporary workers will be considered employees working in the company after only 15 months and will thus acquire their rights to participate in co-determination after 15 months instead of after 24 months as was previously the case. The right to vote and stand for election arises 3 months after the start of employment in the company.
  • Work and Care Act (Wet arbeid en zorg): The CV savings model was abolished. Under the CV savings model, employees could previously save part of their gross salary for unpaid leave or early retirement.
  • Act Declaring Collective Agreements Generally Applicable. For posted professionals, the vacation and remuneration regulations set out in a collective agreement that has been declared generally binding apply if and when the posting lasts longer than 8 days.
  • Extension of the work-related costs rule: At the end of January 2021, the Cabinet announced a temporary extension of the allowance to 3% of the first EUR 400,000 of payroll. From 2022, this allowance will be reduced again to 1.7%.
  • Untaxed home office allowance: The Cabinet has introduced a tax-free home office allowance of a maximum of EUR 2 per day. The untaxed home office allowance does not apply to days on which the employee already receives a travel allowance. If the employee works part of the day at home and part of the day at the office, either the untaxed home office allowance or the travel allowance can be paid.
  • Ban on smoking rooms: As of January 1, 2022, smoking rooms are prohibited by law in rooms, buildings and establishments where employees perform or customarily perform their work.


Arbeidsrechtelijke wijzigingen per 1 januari 2022

Read the article in Dutch language here.


Changes in labor law provisions applicable as of a later date

  • Introduction of the STAP-budget: From March 1, 2022, employees and job seekers who are over 18 years old can apply for a budget of EUR 1,000 per year for further education and sustainable development (the so-called STAP-budget, STAP is the abbreviation for Stimulering Arbeidsmarkt Positie, stimulating the labor market position). With this, the government wants to give people the opportunity to take their professional development into their own hands. The Executive Agency for Education (Dienst Uitvoering Onderwijs, "DUO") maintains a list of eligible training measures.
  • NOW6 (Tijdelijke Noodmaatregel Overbrugging voor Werkbehoud = Temporary Emergency Bridging Measure for Sustained Employment (the Dutch subsidy scheme for companies affected by the Pandemic)): The NOW program will continue through March 31, 2022. The exact application date for NOW6 for employers will be announced soon.
  • Changes to the regulations on the prevention of major accidents involving hazardous substances by recasting the Regulation on Working Conditions (Arbeidsomstandighedenbesluit): With the introduction of these regulations, all companies that use hazardous substances to a greater or lesser extent will be required to report them, and the supervisory authority SZW will be empowered to use additional instruments to enforce the relevant regulations. The regulation will come into force on July 1, 2022.
  • Upcoming implementation of the Directive on Transparent and Foreseeable Employment Conditions in the EU: The Directive gives employees more rights in the context of their employment. Costs of mandatory education/training must be reimbursed by the employer, and secondary employment may no longer be prohibited in principle. The directive is expected to be transposed into Dutch law by August 1, 2022.
  • Entry into force of the Paid Parental Leave Act: Every employee is entitled to a benefit for nine weeks during the period in which the child has not yet completed the first year of life or during one year after the date of adoption. The amount of the benefit shall not exceed 50% of the maximum daily wage. The law will enter into force on August 2, 2022.

For the situation in Germany, compare the provisions on parental leave and parental allowance.

  • Contribution to fixed costs (Tegemoetkoming Vaste Lasten, "TVL"). The TVL scheme will continue in the first quarter of 2022. The date for applying for the advance on the TVL Q1 2022 and the exact conditions for this application are not yet known.
  • Return contribution for the Health Insurance Act (Ziektewet): Employers who previously granted benefits normally granted via the public system, i.e. under the Health Insurance Act (Ziektewet) using insurers and comparable mechanisms, but who then wish to return to the public system, must expect a higher return contribution from January 1, 2024. The Health Insurance Act contribution will increase from half the industry contribution to the full industry contribution. This change does not apply to employers who return to the public system no later than July 1, 2022.

Do you have questions about this article? Please contact one of our specialists:


Jolanda Jansen
Senior Manager

Vanuit de aandachtsgebieden sociale zekerheidswetgeving, het arbeidsrecht en de loonbelasting is het mijn uitdaging om het personeelsbeleid bij bedrijven zo optimaal mogelijk in te richten. Hierbij ki... More

Fraukje Panis
Senior Manager

At Deloitte Legal I am responsible for international employment law advice. This means that I guide (multinational) companies in the field of employment law and related areas of law such as social law... More

Stella Evers
Senior Manager

I specialize in employment and pension law and have in the past advised and litigated on behalf of both Dutch and foreign clients on various topics, such as employment documentation (employment agreem... More

Anne-Marie van den Belt
Practice Leader Employment Law & Benefits.

Lawyer in employment law & benefits. I advise domestic and foreign public and privately held companies on day-to-day employment matters and on the (re)structuring of major events in company life cycle... More

Clim Giesen
Legal Consultant

Clim is senior legal consultant in Deloitte Legal practice since August 2016. She finished her master degree in Labour Law at the University of Amsterdam. She advises both domestic and international c... More

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