2024: Key employment law changes

15 January 2024

Indexation and numbers

  • Increase in maximum transitional compensation: the maximum transitional compensation is EUR 94,000 or one year’s salary, whichever is higher;
  • Increase of the WNT ceiling: the general WNT ceiling has been increased to EUR 233,000;
  • Increase in untaxed home allowance: the untaxed home allowance has been increased to EUR 2.35 per day;
  • Increase in untaxed travel allowance: the untaxed travel allowance has been increased to EUR 0.23 per kilometer;
  • Increase in the maximum pensionable wage: the maximum pensionable wage has been set at EUR 137,800;
  • Reduction of the free margin under the work-related costs scheme: the free margin under the work-related costs scheme will be reduced from 3% to 1.92% on the first EUR 400,000 of the wage bill. For the part of the wage bill above EUR 400,000.00, the free margin remains at 1.18%.

Changes by 2024

Whistleblower Protection Act for medium-sized employers

On 18 February 2023, the Whistleblowers Protection Act came into force for large employers (more than 250 employees). Since 17 December 2023, this law also applies to medium-sized employers (50-249 employees), with the result that they must adjust their internal reporting regulations accordingly. The sanctions options of the House for Whistleblowers and the method of anonymous reporting still need to be worked out, see also our earlier newsletter on this topic.

Modernisation of child labour regulations

Child labour regulations are being modernised. Since 5 November 2023, there has been a ban on flash workers under the age of 16.In early 2024, it will be regulated that 13-, 14- and 15-year-olds will be allowed to work until 20:00 on non-school days. The option to work on Sundays (under strict conditions) will also be introduced for 13- and 14-year-olds. Furthermore, a regulatory standards framework will be developed for new forms of child labour, such as young influencing and young entrepreneurship.

Minimum Hourly Wage Introduction Act When the Minimum Hourly Wage Introduction Act comes into force on 1 January 2024, employers will be obliged to pay employees at least the minimum hourly wage. This minimum hourly wage will apply to all sectors and will be EUR 13.27 for employees aged 21 and over; for employees under 21, an age-based minimum hourly wage for young people will apply. The fixed monthly, weekly and daily minimum wages will be abolished.

Tax-related 30% rule

From 1 January 2024, two savings of the 30% rule, which allows expatriates to pay 30% of their wages untaxed for five years, will come into effect:

  1. The 30% rule will be capped at the WNT salary limit of EUR 233,000, meaning that a maximum of EUR 69,000 can be paid out untaxed.
  2. The 30% rule will be phased out over five years and replaced by a 10% rule.

Approval of model contracts for self-employed workers withdrawn

Following the Deliveroo ruling, the tax authorities have withdrawn their approval of model contracts that provide for free substitution of the contractor as of 1 January 2024. Model contracts based on free substitution will therefore no longer be usable. Parties have been given until 1 January 2024 to reassess the relevant employment relationships and offer amended agreements.

Lowering the retirement age

As part of the Future Pensions Act, the age of retirement will be lowered from 21 to 18 from 1 January 2024. Pension schemes based on an age of 21 will need to be amended. If you would like further advice on this, please contact us.

Mandatory reporting of work-related CO2 emissions

As a result of the 2019 Climate Agreement, employers with more than 100 employees will be required to report annually on their employees’ business and commuting travel from 1 July 2024. The total number of kilometres travelled by employees must be broken down by mode and fuel type.

Expected changes in 2024

Equal Opportunities in Recruitment and Selection Supervision Bill

The Bill on the Supervision of Equal Opportunities in Recruitment and Selection was adopted by the House of Representatives on 14 March 2023 and is currently before the Senate.

The bill requires employers and intermediaries to establish a procedure aimed at preventing discrimination in the recruitment and selection of employees. Employers with 25 or more employees must put this procedure in writing. Employers with fewer than 25 employees must be able to explain the procedure orally.