Laws and regulations

Laws and regulations

Working Hours Act
The Dutch Working Hours Act lays down rules for working and rest times of employees. The purpose of the Working Hours Act corresponds in part to the purpose of the Working Conditions Act. Both are aimed at ensuring the safetyhealth and well-being of employees at the workplace. A second objective of the Working Hours Act is to make it easier for employees to combine work with care responsibilities or other duties outside of work. The Working Hours Act applies to all employees in the business community and government, including trainees and agency workers. Sometimes the law also applies to self-employed professionals.

DBA Act and the model agreement
The DBA Act (Deregulation Assessment of Labour Relations) has replaced the VAR (Declaration of Labour Relationship) in the Netherlands since 2016. Like a kind of contract, the DBA Act provides freelancers and their clients with clear terms regarding the working relationship they agree to. Unfortunately, the DBA Act has not been able to provide the clarity that the government expected. Nevertheless, the law is and will remain in force but will not be fully enforced until 1 January 2021. In the meantime, new and updated regulations are being drafted. This new regulation is not expected before 2021.

Sequential Liability Act (WKA) and external staff liability
The aim of the sequential liability scheme is to prevent contractors and subcontractors from abusing the outsourcing of work when submitting their payroll taxes. Payroll taxes include wage tax, social insurance contributions, employee insurance contributions and the income-related healthcare insurance contribution.

Foreign Nationals (Employment) Act (WAV)
The WAV (Foreign Nationals (Employment) Act) regulates the conditions under which an employer may deploy a foreign national with a nationality outside the EEA and Switzerland in the Netherlands. If an employer allows a foreign national to perform work without these conditions being met, the company risks a hefty fine. These conditions oversee the application for a work permit or a single permit for residence and work. Please note: the Foreign Nationals (Employment) Act applies not just to employers, but also to private individuals.

It is not permitted to employ foreign workers who do not have free access to the Dutch labour market, without a valid work permit (TWV in Dutch) or single permit for residence and work (GVVA in Dutch).

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) (Dutch: Algemene verordening gegevensbescherming (AVG)) is a European regulation (i.e. with direct effect) that lays down the standardised rules for the processing of personal data by private companies and public authorities throughout the European Union. The aim is not only to guarantee the protection of personal data within the European Union, but also to safeguard the free movement of data within the European single market. The Regulation applies worldwide to all companies and organisations that hold and process personal data of natural persons in the European Union, regardless of whether or not payment is made for services or products.

Placement of Personnel by Intermediaries Act
Waadi stands for Wet allocatie arbeidskrachten door intermediairs., or the Placement of Personnel by Intermediaries Act in English The Waadi protects workers against exploitation by rogue employment agencies. The Waadi regulates, among other things, the remuneration of temporary workers. The Waadi also includes a ban on supplying temporary workers to a company whose own employees are on strike.