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Job loss resulting from Covid-19: What’s next?
2020-07-01 | By Genoveva Geppaart
Covid-19 has changed our personal and work lives considerably. Many companies have financial difficulties because they can’t produce their products or offer their services as they are used to. Some companies have needed to dismiss employees despite financial help from the government, while other companies can survive, but still have financial difficulties. Many self-employed people (ZZP’ers) don’t have any assignments.
In this article, we mention what you can do if you are faced with dismissal, what kind of financial support you may be entitled to, and what else you can do to find a job/new assignments. We assume you are entitled to stay in the Netherlands, even if you don’t have a job anymore. If you don’t know if your residence permit is still valid if you lost your job, it is best to contact the IND.
Your rights in case of dismissal
In the Netherlands, there are strict rules when your employer wants to dismiss you. If you are dismissed for economic reasons this has nothing to do with your performance or attitude. If you are faced with redundancy, your employer has to make a settlement agreement with you or ask the UWV/court for permission to dismiss you. You may be entitled to a transition payment to compensate you for the cost of finding a new job.
You can find more information about this from our partner GMW Lawyers in Dutch News
The Dutch government has set up several regulations to support companies, self-employed people (ZZP’ers), and flexible workers financially. In addition, the normal rules for unemployment benefits and social welfare apply.
Freelance workers who lost many assignments due to the corona crisis may be entitled to financial support from the government called Tozo 2. If your income and your partner’s income is more than the social minimum, you don’t qualify. There are also other requirements. More information is available here. This support applies until the end of September 2020.
If you have been dismissed because of Covid-19 and are still unemployed, you may qualify for unemployment benefits. In this article, we offer an overview of all kinds of questions and answers you may have about unemployment and unemployment benefits in the Netherlands.
Some people haven’t worked long enough to qualify for unemployment benefits. If you don’t have any other income and your savings are a maximum of €6,225 (if you are single) or €12,450 (if you have a partner), you may qualify for social welfare. If you have a partner or children who earn money and/or have savings, their income and savings will also be taken into consideration if you apply for social welfare. More information is available here (in Dutch).
Flexible workers who don’t qualify for unemployment benefits or social welfare but have hardly any income may be entitled to a one-time benefit called TOFA.
Finding a new job
In the Netherlands, about 70% of new jobs are found through networking. This is an important addition to looking for vacancies via online search engines, job agencies, and LinkedIn.
You can find many questions and answers about finding work in the Netherlands here on the ACCESS Website.
Volunteering can also be a way to find a new job. It offers you the possibility to expand your network and learn new skills, which can help you in your job search. Read more about volunteering in the Netherlands and explore more opportunities.
Change of career
If you have worked in a sector which will have few jobs in the near future, you may need to consider working elsewhere. However, finding your strengths, weaknesses, interests and how this fits into the Dutch labour market is not easy. A career coach can help you with this. Several members of the ACCESS Training Network are career coaches that could offer you support through some courses.
For further questions regarding Covid-19 and losing your job or any other questions about 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.