The government announces a new regulation to support companies that have to shut down due to coronavirus: the Temporary Emergency Bridging Measure for Sustained Employment (NOW). The former ‘unemployment benefit during short-time working’ (WTV) has been cancelled because its terms were insufficient to aid the profound consequences of the coronavirus.

Conditions if you want to claim NOW

In order to be eligible for the new regulation, you need to meet the following requirements:

  • You will not be allowed to request permission to dismiss employees on economic grounds during the period for which you receive compensation.

  • You continue paying out all salaries.

  • You expect to lose at least 20% turnover since 1st of March 2020.

You claim compensation for 3 months, with the possibility to extend it once, for a further 3 months (extra conditions may apply to an extension application).

What will change in the NOW 3.0?

The cabinet has announced that the NOW (with modified conditions) will be extended again and that the NOW 3 continues until 30 June 2021. These are some of the conditions;

  • The dismissal fine is cancelled.

  • The fixed (flat-rate) surcharge is 40%. This concerns a surcharge for employer costs such as the build-up of holiday pay, pension and employer contributions.

  • The reference month for the wage bill will be June 2020.

  • You have to encourage employees to request development advice or to receive training for job retention.

  • A company that uses the NOW is not allowed to make a profit distribution to shareholders, pay bonuses to the board and management or buy back its own shares.

NOW 3 is divided into 3 subsidy blocks of 3 months. Applications for NOW 3.1 were possible until December 27, 2020. From February 15, 2021 to March 14, 2021, NOW 3.2 will open. You can apply at the UWV. For more information, also check the website of the National Government.

Unemployment benefit during short-time working (WTV)

In case you already claimed the WTV, you won’t have to apply for the NOW. Previous (unconfirmed) WTV claims will be automatically adjusted to the new regulation as the WTV regulation is revoked.

Reimbursement Fixed Costs (TVL)

The Reimbursement Fixed Costs (TVL) helps SMEs and self-employed persons to pay part of their fixed costs. Applications for TVL Q4 2020 can be made up to and including 29 January 2021 at 5 PM at the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO.nl).

The cabinet has announced that the TVL scheme will be expanded for the period Q1 2021. This extension is not yet active at the opening of TVL Q1 2021 in February. RVO still calculates the TVL Q1 2021 with the conditions that were known before 21 January. You will automatically receive an additional payment later. Are you eligible for TVL for the first time in the 1st quarter of 2021? Then you can’t apply for TVL Q1 2021 directly at RVO. The application date will be announced.

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