Unemployment Benefit

As an employee, you will be interested in the question of whether or not your dismissal could endanger your unemployment benefit (WW). As an employer, you might be interested in whether or not the employee you want to dismiss qualifies for an unemployment benefit. If the employee expects to qualify for an unemployment benefit, negotiations concerning termination of the employment could be a lot simpler.Roughly speaking, the unemployment benefit is at risk if the employee performs a so-called 'damaging action'. Such damaging action could be the employee himself being to blame for the dismissal. This is the case, for instance, when the employee was dismissed with immediate effect. In addition, the benefits agency may come to the conclusion that the employee accepted the dismissal too easily.

If the benefits agency concludes that the employee is guilty of a damaging action, it must enforce a sanction. This sanction can consist of withholding the unemployment benefit for one to six months. In extreme situations, full exclusion from the unemployment benefit is possible. In very general terms, a dismissal for economic reasons will not endanger an unemployment benefit. Of course, the miserable economic circumstances stated by the employer will have to have been confirmed by, inter alia, audited, recent annual figures. The benefits agency will usually rely on the Centre for Work and Income's opinion when a dismissal permit is granted. If the employment was terminated by means of a resolution for dissolution from the Subdistrict Court, the benefits agency will want to have the documents on which this procedure was based to process the unemployment benefit, i.e.: the petition, the statement of defence and the Subdistrict Court's final judicial decision. For its opinion on whether damaging action occurred, the benefits agency leans heavily (but not exclusively) on the Subdistrict Court's opinion of whether either of the parties is largely to blame for the situation that has arisen.

The employee can object to a decision made by the benefits agency to refuse an unemployment benefit in part or in full. This objection must have been lodged within six weeks from the date the decision was given, preferably by registered letter and with confirmation of receipt. The benefits agency should then explore again whether the contested decision was correct. If the industrial insurance board dismisses the objection as unfounded, the employee can appeal to the Court. More information about legislation and the policy of benefits agencies can be found on their website. Please click here to go to this page. The browser will open it in a separate page, so you can easily return to this web page.

Fictitious notice period

If an employment contract is terminated by dissolution through the Subdistrict Court, the benefits agency will at least oblige the employee to deploy the dissolution compensation for bridging the so-called fictitious notice period as much as possible. This notice period is equal to the notice period that the employer should have observed if he had terminated the employment contract in a regular manner. If the employment contract is terminated by permission to terminate employment from the Centre for Work and Income or by the Subdistrict Court, a month will be subtracted from the fictitious notice period, although this will never be less than a month.

This fictitious notice period can be bridged, for instance, by agreeing with the employer that he will compensate for the notice period on top of the dissolution compensation. It is also possible to request the Subdistrict Court, in consultation with the employer, to only dissolve the employment contract after expiry of the notice period to be observed normally.

Required data

If you wish to instruct a specialist lawyer to object against a benefits agency's decision, you will need at least the following details and documents:

  • the benefits agency's decision in which your unemployment benefit application was rejected in full or in part;
  • the Subdistrict Court's decision in which the employment contract was dissolved;
  • the submitted version of the petition to dissolve the employment contract;
  • the submitted defence against the desired dissolution of the employment contract;
  • the application form for your unemployment benefit;
  • the correspondence with your employer that preceded the termination of your employment.

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