Stock image of a female worker (Picture: Wikimedia Commons/Peter van der Sluijs) - Credit: Stock image of a female worker (Picture: Wikimedia Commons/Peter van der Sluijs)
Wednesday, 4 May 2016 - 12:25
Entrepreneur law changes forcing big firms to drop freelancers
The introduction of a new law for entrepreneurs in the Netherlands is already having effect on freelancers - large companies no longer want to hire them, BNR reports based on documents in its possession. The companies asked not to be mentioned by name. On May 1st the Law Declaration of Labor Relations was replaced by the Law Deregulation Review Labor Relations. This new law introduces model contracts in which clients and freelancers have to document their employment relationship for each contract. It is unclear exactly how the Tax Authorities will assess whether paper agreements and actual activities correspond with each other. And the large companies BNR spoke to find this simply too uncertain. They want to know in advance exactly what they are getting into, and if that certainty can not be provided they will stop taking on freelance contracts. They are concerned that afterwards they will have to pay social security contributions and payroll tax for freelancers. Recruitment agencies also noticed much uncertainty among both clients and freelancers, according to BNR. The law was adapted but the communication about what it will mean in practice is "minimal", some said to the broadcaster. The D66 is very concerned about these reports. Parliamentarian Steven van Weyenberg wants Finance State Secretary Eric Wiebes and the Tax Authorities to rectify the situation at once. "As far as I'm concerned, this is the Tax Authorities and State Secretary Wiebes' job: much better communication, not only to entrepreneurs, but also to clients. I also want us to look at how this law is working in the coming weeks and months. Because we have to turn back if it appears that many people who are clearly independent contractors lose their jobs", he said to BNR.