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Unemployment benefits after losing your job

If you lose your job, you may receive unemployment benefits. What do you have to do to get unemployment benefits? Who is eligible? And how much do you get?

Register immediately with the UWV

You lost your job. We know how much of a pain this is, but try not to wallow for too long. Register immediately with your local Dutch Employee Insurance Agency (Uitvoeringsinstituut Werknemersverzekeringen (UWV)). You can also do this online on the Werk.nl website. Do not wait too long. Do this no later than one day after becoming unemployed.

NB: Were you fired on the spot? If so, please contact us before you register with the UWV.

Find your nearest UWV

Not everybody is eligible for unemployment benefits.

These are the six most important conditions that you must fulfil to receive unemployment benefits:

  1. You have not yet reached the state pension age.
  2. You are unemployed and have lost five hours a week. If you worked less than ten hours a week, you will lose at least half of your hours.
  3. You are available to work.
  4. You worked for at least six months and in the 36 weeks before you lost your job, you worked at least 26 of those weeks.
  5. You are not wilfully unemployed. This means that you did not resign and you were not fired due to gross misconduct. This includes things like stealing, sexual harassment, or disclosing confidential information.
  6. You are insured for unemployment benefits.

When will I start receiving benefits?

You will receive unemployment benefits upon becoming unemployed. You will become unemployed in the eyes of the UWV following the statutory notice period or the notice period stipulated in your contract. If you and your boss agree to an earlier end date than stipulated in your contract, you will not receive unemployment benefits any earlier.

See how the UWV calculates your unemployment benefits.

How long will I receive unemployment benefits for?

How long you receive unemployment benefits for depends on how long you worked for. From 1 January 2016, the maximum period that you can receive unemployment benefits for has been gradually reduced from 38 months to 24 months.

NB: The structure of unemployment benefits has changed. Before 1 January 2016, you received one month of unemployment benefits for every year that you had worked. From 1 January 2016 you will receive one month of unemployment benefits for the first ten years that you have worked. For the years after that, you will receive only half a month for each year.

If you resign, you are considered responsible for becoming unemployed. In this case, you will not receive unemployment benefits. You will be deemed wilfully unemployed.

Do you and your employer both want to part ways? If so, you can mutually terminate your contract. This is called dismissal by mutual consent. In this case, you will receive unemployment benefits.

You record this in a settlement agreement. This must show that the dismissal is at the initiative of your boss and that there is no reason for instant dismissal.

NB: Never just sign off on dismissal. Cooperating with your dismissal can be bad for you. For example, you may receive fewer unemployment benefits. Does your boss want to end your contract, and do you want to agree? If so, contact the first. We will advise you on how to best approach this.

If you have any questions or concerns about your work, please contact us. We are happy to help you!

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