Breaking news for freelancers and entrepreneur

31 Mar 2020

On 27 March 2020, the Dutch government announced that up until 31 May 2020, an application for the temporary emergency scheme for self-employed entrepreneurs (Tozo) for a maximum period of 3 months can be filed at the municipalities. This is a relaxed arrangement to support freelancers so that they can continue their business. The commencement date of the scheme will have retroactive effect up to 1 March 2020.

Claire Vogel

To be eligible for this scheme, there is no:

  • requirement of viability of the company;
  • equity test;
  • assessment of the partner's income.

However, the following requirements do apply. The freelancer:

  • resides in the Netherlands and the company is established in the Netherlands (or the main activities take place in the Netherlands);
  • meets the hour criterion for the self-employed person's allowance (at least 1,225 hours a year or 24 hours a week working as a self-employed person);
  • has been commercially active as a self-employed person and has registered with the Chamber of Commerce prior to 17 March 2020;
  • has stated that he/she expects that as a result of the corona crisis, income will be less than the social minimum in the next three months.

Two provisions can be invoked under this scheme:

  1. Assistance for living expenses in the form of a gift (of a maximum of € 1,500 net for married couples and € 1,050 for singles); and/or
  2. Assistance to meet the working capital requirement (a loan of up to € 10,157 with an interest of 2%).

Those who apply for this scheme are obliged to provide the municipality with all information that could affect the entitlement to or the amount of the benefit. Municipalities are obliged to reclaim the assistance granted and impose a fine in the event of fraud. This will be checked after the fact.

Allowance for entrepreneurs

In addition, the Cabinet on March 27, 2020 announced that the Allowance for Entrepreneurs Affected Sectors COVID-19 (Emergency Desk) will be published in the Government Gazette on Monday March 30, 2020. The cabinet will very shortly communicate when the emergency desk is to open. Companies can receive a one-off grant in the form of a gift of € 4,000, in particular to pay their fixed costs.

Concurrence of the aforementioned schemes is possible.

Finally, the Cabinet aims to release further information about the Temporary Emergency Measure Bridging for Work Retention (NOW) later this week.

For further information we refer to the various articles on our website.