Ex-MPs collect millions in benefits

Ronald Plasterk
Ronald PLasterk. Source: Wikimedia/Roel Wijnants. (Ronald Plasterk. Source: Wikimedia/Roel Wijnants)

Between 2011 and 2013, former Members of Parliament have collectively received more than €12 million in half-pay. Ex-Ministers and ex-State Secretaries together accounted for €2 million. This comes from Minister Plasterk, in answer to Parliament questions from the SP, the NOS reports.

MPs have a right to half-pay if they are no longer members of the House of Representatives. For a maximum of three years and two months, they can receive half-pay if they do not have a job. The first year, they get 80 percent of their previous income, after that, 70 percent.

This does obligate these ex-MPs to apply for employment elsewhere, unless they fulfill certain conditions such as having ancillary revenue.

According to the NOS, the number of unemployed politicians who have to take this half-pay fluctuates. At the end of 2013, 67 ex-MPs and 19 ex-Administrators received benefits.

In 2012, it took an average of 145 days before ex-MPs found a new job. Minister Plasterk cannot say how long it took for ex-Administrators, who have a right to four years of half-pay.

In relation to ancillary revenue, for example, the amount of benefits received also changes or is stopped throughout the year.