Termination of a Dutch employment contract by mutual consent

By augustus 27, 2020 No Comments

Termination by mutual consent: what about that?

You are told that your employer wants to fire you and you agree to this dismissal. Or you request that the employment contract be terminated and your employer agrees. You enter into a conversation together and make agreements. This is called “termination of the employment contract by mutual consent.”

This form of termination does not require permission from a judge or the UWV. Nevertheless, there are a number of legal aspects that you should pay close attention to.

The settlement agreement

If there is mutual consent, you and your employer draw up a written contract in which your employment is terminated and under which conditions this is done: the settlement agreement. In addition to the date of dismissal, these conditions include many matters that are arranged in the agreement. For example, you make agreements about payment or taking of your vacation days and it must state whether there are still debts on both sides. You can also agree with your employer that you are still allowed to work for competitors (expiry of competition or relationship clause) and whether, for example, you take over your lease car or other company property.

In addition, you can make agreements about receiving any reimbursement. If you are fired, you are entitled to the transition allowance. You do not have that right with a termination agreement, but it is a good starting point for the negotiation. You can still receive a (different) severance payment in consultation.

Important issues

Your employer must not assume too quickly that you agree to the termination of your employment. There must be a clear statement that cannot be questioned. It must be clear from the settlement agreement that there is no urgent reason for dismissal (such as criminal behavior, theft, violence or fraud), you are not culpably unemployed (for example, you resign because you can get another job), you are not ill and the notice period has been observed. If something like this is the case, it could have consequences for you,

You are also entitled to a 14-day reflection period. If you indeed change your mind, you may have the settlement agreement dissolved in writing without giving any reason. If your employer has not stated this period in the agreement, you have 3 weeks for this. Your employer may never exclude this reflection period!

If you want to keep your right to unemployment benefit, you must also record in writing that your employer has taken the initiative to terminate it. It is also important that your employer takes into account a statutory notice period in that case, even though this is not an obligation. This can have consequences for the period in which you receive your unemployment benefit.

Make sure that you record the settlement agreement on paper and have it signed by both you and your employer.

More information?

The advantage of terminating the employment contract with mutual approval is that you do not have to start a long and costly legal procedure. This also gives you more room in negotiations. Nevertheless, it is wise to obtain legal assistance. For example, you can obtain advice about your legal position or obtain more information about, for example, the content and consequences of your settlement agreement. Please do not hesitate to contact us so that we can let you know what we can do for you. For example, we can help you by checking your agreement or you can schedule a video call with us. These costs can usually be reimbursed through your employer.

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