Covid-19: New and existing support measures
2020-10-05 | By Genoveva Geppaart
The corona crisis has changed our lives completely: we have to limit our travels, work from home as much as possible, the government has set several limitations such as social distancing, and many of us are dealing with the challenges of children going to school again. If you are unsure what is and what is not allowed, have a look at the overview of general actions in the Netherlands. If you want to know more about the symptoms, are infected by COVID-19 or want to know how to avoid getting infected, have a look here.
Financial support for companies, freelance workers and employers
As a consequence of the corona crisis, many companies are having or anticipating financial difficulties, a lot of people have lost their job and freelance workers (ZZP’ers) often don’t have assignments anymore. This causes problems for both companies and individuals.
The Dutch government has set up several regulations to support companies and freelance workers (ZZP’ers) financially. As the crisis will last some time, a third set of measures have replaced the earlier ones. These measures came into force on 1 October 2020 and last until 1July 2021. You can find more information on financial support for companies and for freelance workers (ZZP).
Employers can also get financial support to be able to pay the wages of their employees. You can find the regulations for this here.
Small- and medium-sized companies can get reimbursement for the fixed costs. You can find more information about this here.
Small- and medium-sized companies that have problems due to the COVID-19 crisis can get free professional coaching from the Entrepreneurs Sounding Board Foundation (Stichting Ondernemersklankbord, OKB). During a six-month coaching process (sounding board trajectory), you will receive personal guidance from specialists and former entrepreneurs. For more information, have a look at this website.
Support for individuals
Not only companies have problems. Individuals may have problems paying their rent or mortgage, their rights to stay in the Netherlands could be compromised, or there are questions regarding the education of their children, to name a few.
If you have to leave the Netherlands but can’t return to your country, have a Dutch residence permit but are abroad and can’t travel to the Netherlands or if you have any other questions regarding your stay in the Netherlands, you can look at the IND website for further explanations.
Please note that some salary discussions or measures MAY affect your ‘kennismigrantregeling’ (highly skilled migrant) status, so do please keep this in mind.
Work and unemployment
If you have lost your job due to the COVID-19 crisis, you may be entitled to an unemployment benefit. On the ACCESS website, you can find the frequently asked questions (FAQs) about unemployment. It is important to be informed that your employer is obliged to help you with finding a new job. If they fail to do so, they will get less subsidy to pay the wages of their employees.
You can also find some information that might be useful by reading the articles on what is next after losing your job due to Covid-19 and how Covid-19 affects your work.
Should you have problems paying the rent or the mortgage, it is best to contact your landlord or your mortgage supplier directly. Legally you are still required to pay your rent or mortgage BUT considering these exceptional circumstances your landlord or mortgage supplier might be willing to make an arrangement.
Primary and secondary schools are open again and teach in person. Some schools require all pupils and staff to wear a facemask.
There are several schools where pupils and/or teachers have been infected by corona and are temporarily teaching online. Universities and universities for applied science are mainly teaching online.
Below are some useful links with additional information:
Dutch approach to COVID-19: https://www.government.nl/topics/coronavirus-COVID-19/tackling-new-coronavirus-in-the-netherlands
Dutch Healthcare Authority: https://www.rivm.nl/en/novel-coronavirus-COVID-19
Have a business? https://business.gov.nl/the-coronavirus-and-your-company/
NOTE: the measures mentioned are subject to change, depending on how the COVID-19 crisis develops.
If you have any further questions regarding the COVID-19 crisis and its effects on your life or other questions regarding your life in the Netherlands, please contact the ACCESS helpdesk or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
About the author
Genoveva is a native Dutch and based in The Hague. She studied library and information science in Tilburg and The Hague and worked for about 20 years at KPN. She likes research and writing, and loves to explore many other subjects. She is an ACCESS volunteer since 2005.