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#Tax & Legal #HR Legal #Corona #Force Majeure

What if healthy employees are unable to work because of the Coronavirus?

Saturday 25/04/2020
Niet kunnen werken wegens Corona

The possibility to have recourse to this simple and rapid procedure in the event of difficulties caused by corona initially applied until 31 May, but is now extended until 31 August 2020. 

Since 20 March, no distinction has been made between temporary unemployment due to force majeure or economic unemployment.  If, as a result of Corona, the company is no longer able to employ its employees, either in whole or in part, a temporary unemployment benefit may be claimed for all days on which it is not possible to work. You do not have to pay wages to the employee for the days of unemployment, but you do have to pay wages for the working days. 

The application procedure is very simple. As an employer, you must declare temporary unemployment as "force majeure" in the electronic 'Social Risk Declaration' ('ASR') scenario 5. You select the days on which the employee is temporarily unemployed. For the period up to and including 30 June 2020, contrary to normal practice, you do not have to issue control cards 'C3.2A' to the employees. The employee must once declare the first day of unemployment to his trade union or the help fund. 

The employee is entitled to a benefit equal to 70% (instead of 65%) of his average capped salary (€ 2,754.76 per month). On top of this, the employee receives a supplement of € 5.63 per day at the expense of the NEO. A wage withholding tax of 26.75% is deducted from both allowances. 

Companies still experiencing economic difficulties after 1 July as a result of Corona will have to fall back on the economic unemployment procedure. This procedure is a lot more complicated. There is an obligation of prior notification and specific limits on maximum time limits. In addition, a collective agreement or business plan has to be drawn up. Employers wishing to claim temporary unemployment after 30 June must therefore make the necessary preparations in good time.

If you have other questions regarding the Corona crisis, please visit our special FAQ

Last update: 11/06/2020

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Saskia Lombaerts
Saskia Lombaerts
Director Tax & Legal