14 september 2020

NOW (3.0) restructuring?

NOW 3.0 allows the employer to restructure its business and at the same time retain the entitlement to salary compensation. In our last blog we informed you about NOW 3.0, the new Temporary Emergency Bridging Measure for the Preservation of Work (NOW) and successor of NOW 2.0, which ends on 1 October next. NOW 3.0 still offers employers the right to compensation, albeit to an increasingly limited extent. Unlike its predecessors, under NOW 3.0 it is possible to restructure the organisation. No longer a ‘penalty’ for dismissals for economic reasons applies, as was the case under NOW 1.0 and 2.0, and the reduction of wage costs following a restructuring will have less effect on the compensation to be received. This means that employers will still receive the (financial) support they need, but at the same time will be able to adjust their organisation to the new reality from 1 October next.

The above will be good news for many employers. However, this does not mean that they will be allowed to restructure their organisation as they deem fit. An employer must comply with a wide range of legislation and regulations. It will hopefully be a one-time experience for your organisation, but for us it is daily practice, which is why we are most pleased to assist you herewith.

The Boontje restructuring roadmap
A restructuring is an extensive process that requires careful preparation. Below you will find our infographic, in which the steps to be taken and the timeline are shown schematically.

In the coming weeks we will guide you through the restructuring process on the basis of the infographic. In our next blogs we will discuss each step of the process:

Step 1: Reason               
Although in principle an employer is free to restructure, the need for a restructuring must be sufficiently substantiated. The business economic reason may be related to, for example, a poor financial situation, a reduction in workload or termination of activities.

Step 2: Selection  
An employer cannot choose himself which employee(s) are eligible for dismissal. When selecting redundant employees, the hierarchy between different groups of employees and the principle of reflection (in Dutch: ‘afspiegelingsbeginsel‘) determine which employee should be selected for dismissal.

Step 3: Redeployment
If an employee is selected for dismissal, an employer is legally obliged to look for opportunities to redeploy the employee to a suitable position.

Step 4: Termination
Dutch law stipulates that the employer must request the UWV for permission to terminate the employment contract of the employee(s) concerned. However, for reasons of efficiency and certainty, it is advisable to enter into a settlement agreement with the employee(s) concerned and agree on the termination by mutual consent.

In every abovementioned step, attention will be paid to the relevant legislation and regulations. Of course we will also offer you practical advice. We will discuss the timeline of a restructuring, which will be determined by, among other things, the mandatory notification of a collective dismissal, the mandatory consultation of the works council and the UWV proceedings. If in the meantime more details about NOW 3.0 are revealed, you will be updated as well.

Would you like to know more?
Would you like to know more about the different steps to be taken in case of a restructuring? Contact Yvette Dissel (dissel@boontje.nl) or St├ęphanie Spoelder (spoelder@boontje.nl). You can also contact them by telephone on 020 – 572 7190. Our Corona Reorganisation Team remains at your disposal.