Over 122,000 Dutch freelancers lost work due to new law: report

At least 18 percent of the nearly 700 thousand freelancers in the Netherlands lost work over the past year due to a new law against false self-employment, Dutch newspaper Trouw reports based on a study by the Chamber of Commerce which publishes on Monday. That amounts to 122 thousand affected freelancers.

Someone is considered a freelancer in the Netherlands if he or she is self-employed and does not have any employees. The new law is called the Deregulation Review of Labor Relations Act. It replaces the Declaration of Labor Relations Act. The new law is intended to protect freelancers against disguised employment through model contracts and to hold employers liable for evading social security contributions and payroll taxes. 

The law was implemented on May 1st last year. Its enforcement was set to start on May 1st of this year, but has been postponed until January 1st, 2018. But companies that don't hold to the rules can already face fines.  According to the Chamber of Commerce, this means that employers are already avoiding freelancers out of fear of fines and surcharges.