Emergency Bridging Measure to Preserve Employment (NOW)

Key information on the NOW measure (“Noodmaatregel Overbrugging Werkgelegenheid) due to the Covid-19 Coronavirus outbreak

Application for NOW subsidy and advance payment


Due to the Coronavirus outbreak the temporary Emergency Measure Bridging Employment (NOW) was introduced. From 6 April 2020 you can apply for the NOW 1.0 subsidy via a UWV web form for your wage costs in the months March, April and May 2020. Your turnover from 1 March 2020 must have fallen by 20% or more compared to 2019. The NOW scheme has been extended by 3 months. From 6 July 2020, you can apply for the NOW 2.0 subsidy for the months of June, July and August. This is a subsidy application that you must submit as completely and correctly as possible, otherwise the application will not be processed and you will not receive an advance payment. You will also have to comply with the subsidy conditions in order to retain your right to the subsidy. Good preparation is therefore crucial!

Preparation of the application
You will have to make a number of important legal and financial choices in preparation for the application. 

In order to help you as much as possible, we have put together 2 services for you:

Read more about it below:
  • The NOW requirements
  • Level of wage costs compensation
  • Calculation example
  • Main requirements for NOW subsidy
  • Corona Legal Support 


Consultation € 220,- ex VAT.


Request Consultation

As corporate legal advisors, we can help you make the right choices:

  • Is the NOW application the best choice for your company to keep your financial situation manageable? Or is reorganisation better? Or both? 
  • When is the best time to submit the application?
  • Over which period can you best estimate the decline in turnover?
  • Can you dismiss employees during the NOW scheme or not?
  • How should the wage bill and the estimated decrease in turnover be calculated exactly?
  • What about the difference between the advance payment and the established subsidy?

This simply takes place through a Skype consultation of up to 1 hour in which your accountant or payroll administrator may participate. 

After this conversation it will become clear whether the NOW request is the right way to proceed. Should that be the case, you can arrange the NOW application via us. See the button on the right.

NOW request € 395,- ex VAT.


NOW request

We take care of your NOW request. Our work consists of the following:

  1. First of all, you will be sent a short digital form by e-mail in which you fill in the basic details of your company that are necessary for the application and the consultation.
  2. Subsequently, a NOW consultation will take place with a company legal advisor, either by telephone or by Skype/Teams, for a maximum of 30 minutes. During the advisory meeting, we will inform you about the NOW regulation, discuss your company’s situation and discuss any points for attention. In this way we ensure that you can make optimum use of the NOW subsidy and the advance payment.
  3. TLC, as authorised representative, submits the NOW application for your company correctly and completely to the UWV on the basis of the information provided by you.
  4. You will receive from us a calculation of the expected advance payments and the expected payment dates.

This assignment does not include the application for the final subsidy determination (possibly with the help of an auditor’s report) after the end of the reference turnover period. Of course we can take care of this for you in due course on the basis of a separate assignment. We put this on the agenda as a task.




NOW Requirements


The NOW is the successor to the Working Time Reduction scheme. The new NOW scheme is focused on the current corona problems in order to better absorb your decline in turnover and unemployment. With your application you can be reimbursed up to 90% of your wage costs. On the basis of your application, the UWV will give you an advance payment of 80% of the allowance you apply for, for a period of 3 months, which could be extended by the government for 3 more months.

You are entitled to a NOW 1.0 allowance if you:

  • your employees continue to pay 100% of their wages
  • do not dismiss your employees for economic reasons
  • has at least 20% decrease in turnover

Changes NOW 2.0w

The NOW scheme will be extended by 3 months. The most important change with respect to the NOW 1.0 is the disappearance of the dismissal penalty from the terms and conditions. Instead of the 150% ‘fine’ there is now ‘only’ a correction at the level of the salary. In addition, the percentage of employer charges is increased from 30% to 40%. On the other hand, there is a ban on the payment of dividends, bonuses and the repurchase of own shares.


    Level of wage costs compensation


    With a NOW application, you can be reimbursed up to 90% of your wage bill (social insurance wage). Your wage and salary bill will be increased by 30%, or even 40% for the NOW 2.0, to compensate for the employer’s costs, pension contribution and holiday allowance. There is also a maximum wage per employee of € 9538 per month. The exact percentage depends on your turnover decrease, see the table and calculation example below.

    Afterwards, your advance will be corrected on the basis of your actual loss of turnover by means of a subsidy determination. This determination can be requested as of 7 September 2020. If you do not do this, you will have to pay everything back. You will probably have to submit an auditor’s report from a certain wage bill/turnover. If you have underestimated your loss of turnover, you may be entitled to a supplementary payment. Have you overestimated your fall in turnover or wage bill? In that case, you must repay the amount paid out in excess.

    The Legal Company can help you with this final determination in both cases. You can request a price indication from us.



    Calculation example NOW 1.0:

    Drop in turnover

    1 March up to 31 May 2020

    Expected wage compensation
    (total wage bill = € 300.000,-)
    1 March up to 31 May 2020

    Advance 80% of the expected wage compensation

    – 100% drop in turnover = – € 600.000,-

    90% x  € 300.000,- = € 270.000,- gross

    € 270.000,- x 80% = € 216.000,-

    – 50% drop in turnover = – € 300.000,-

    45% x € 300.000,- = € 135.000,- gross

    € 135.000,- x 80% = € 108.000,-

    – 25% drop in turnover = € 150.000,-

    22,5% x € 300.000,- = €  67.500,- gross

    € 67.500,- x 80% = € 54.000,-




    Main requirements for NOW subsidy



    Concern


    Operating companies with at least a 20% drop in turnover that are part of groups without this drop in turnover can still apply for a subsidy from the UWV due to a recent change in the NOW scheme. However, they must meet additional conditions for this, such as no dividend may be paid, no own shares may be purchased and there must be an agreement with the trade union on work retention.

    Turnover loss


    You will receive wage compensation if the turnover has decreased by at least 20% in three consecutive months from 1 March to 1 August 2020. Employers can choose whether they calculate the fall in turnover over the measurement period starting on 1 March, 1 April or 1 May 2020.

    Continued payment of wages


    As an employer, you must continue to pay 100% of the usual wage, of which you will receive a maximum of 90% compensation. This also applies to employees with a flexible contract.

    Advance payment


    The UWV pays out an advance payment in three monthly instalments equal to 80% of the expected wage costs subsidy. In principle, the first advance will be paid within 2 to 4 weeks after the application.

    Afterwards, the advance will be corrected based on your actual turnover loss.

    Flexible employees


    Under the NOW, wage compensation can also be claimed for employees with flexible hours contracts, such as on-call contracts, such as zero-hours contracts and min-max contracts.

    It is currently being investigated whether an extra safety net can be put in place for flex workers who now fall between shore and ship.

    Temping and Payroll agencies


    Temping and Payroll agencies can also apply for a subsidy for wage costs for temporary and payroll workers employed by them. The same conditions apply as for regular employers.

    Period of subsidy


    The duration of the grant is 3 months starting in March, April or May. This period has been extended by a further 3 months. The NOW 2.0 months must be in line with the NOW 1.0 months.

    In the NOW 2.0 the dismissal fine disappears, the employer’s surcharge is increased and the reference month is changed to March instead of January.

    Change WAB


    The 30% overtime scheme WW premium differentiation has officially been postponed by one year due to the consequences of the coronavirus. This is a generic postponement (i.e. not depending on sector) until 1 January 2021. This was mainly due to the many care providers and supermarkets that allow staff to work more hours because of Covid-19 and thus run the risk of ending up in the high WW rate.

    Dismissal


    In the NOW 1.0 it is not the intention that after 18 March 2020 the employer will still apply to the UWV for permission for dismissal for economic reasons. If it does, the employer will be faced with a ‘dismissal fine’ of 150%. This dismissal penalty is not included in the conditions of the NOW 2.0.

     

    Auditor’s report


    Companies above a certain turnover threshold or wage bill will have to demonstrate the decrease in turnover by means of an auditor’s report with the request for the final determination of the subisidy. These thresholds will be announced at a later date.

     


    Corona Legal Support

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    The advisory meetings will be carried out by Mr. Hella Vercammen and the subsequent actions will be carried out by her team. The team consists of fellow legal advisor Alain Hardy and paralegal Yannick van der Drift.

    We offer our services for a transparent and reasonable price. Request a quote now by sending an e-mail to info@thelegalcompany.nl or call 020-3450152.

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    Breach of contract advice and assistance


    Advice and assistance on breach of contract due to Corona circumstances

      In principle, your clients or customers may not take any unilateral action with regard to long-term agreements concluded with you, such as suspension, reduction of purchase obligations such as hours, unauthorised interim termination under the guise of Corona. This is simply a breach of contract. We can help you with this very quickly, since maintaining your turnover is now crucial.

      Step 1. Skype advice
      Skype consultation of up to 1 hour whether the breach of contract is permitted or not. You choose whether you want to go to step 2.

      Step 2. Notice of default / summons
      If this is not permitted, we will draw up a breach of contract letter with notice of default/request for performance.


      Adjusting general terms and conditions


      Adjust terms and conditions to corona and other uncertain future events

      A good set of general terms and conditions is essential to close your legal position in uncertain times such as the corona outbreak. These terms and conditions can, for example, make the difference between whether or not corona can invoke force majeure and whether or not your other party must continue to pay, even with force majeure on the part of Corona.

      Step 1. Skype intake
      Skype consultation of up to 1 hour about your business processes. We ask the right questions so we can deliver custom corona/force majeure clauses.

      Step 2. Modification of general terms and conditions
      Drawing up the custom corona/force majeure clauses that will be incorporated in your current terms and conditions and amending your current terms and conditions if they contain adverse or conflicting provisions.

      NB. We can also provide an overall update/improvement of your set of terms and conditions, e.g. in line with new activities, or changed legislation (e.g. the AVG, a new collective labour agreement) or your new liability insurance policy. 

      Step 3. Instructions for use
      You will receive a user instruction with advice on the correct use of your new general terms and conditions;