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Een vrouw leest een contract

Source: Karolina Grabowska

Rights and obligations as an employee

Last updated: 5/30/2023, 12:15 PM
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As an employee, you have a number of rights and obligations that you and your employer must abide by. You can read about the main rules here.

Work and mandatory education until the age of 18

In the Netherlands, children between the ages of 5 and 16 are subject to compulsory education. This also applies to children of other nationalities and children of asylum seekers. If adolescents do not yet have a secondary school diploma, they are subject to compulsory education until they reach the age of 18.

13 to 16 years of age
16 and 17 years of age
18 years of age or older

Rules on wages and benefits

As a salaried employee, you have certain rights. The most important right is the right to a minimum wage. This is the amount that you should get at least for the work you do, and it is stated in the law.

The minimum wage varies by age. The older you are, the higher the minimum wage is. From the age of 21, the minimum wage is a fixed amount. It is important that you do not earn less than the minimum wage.

In addition, you can always negotiate your wage. Make sure that your wage is not too low and you do not earn less than other people doing the same job.

Agreements about work in your contract

In addition to your salary, there are other agreements set out in your contract. These are called terms of employment. They include the number of hours you work per day and the number of leave days you can take per year. You are also entitled to paid leave under certain circumstances: maternity leave, parental leave and care leave.

Questions and advice

For any legal questions and more information about employment contracts, contact

Click here for an additional explanation
'Het Juridisch Loket'
(legal help desk). Call toll-free (0800) 80 20 to speak to a lawyer. 'Het Juridisch Loket' is available between 09:00 and 17:00 from Monday to Friday.

Travel allowance

Travel expenses to and from work can be expensive. Your employer may offer you a travel allowance. This is compensation for the costs you incur to get to work.

Tax free

When travelling by personal transportation, carpooling or public transportation, an employer can provide a tax-free reimbursement of up to €0.21 per kilometre. If your employer reimburses more than €0.21 per kilometre, everything above this €0.21 counts as wages. It is therefore taxed in the same way as the rest of your wages.

When travelling by public transportation, the employer may also choose to reimburse the travel expenses incurred tax free. This means the employer pays the entire price of your train ticket, for example.

Make arrangements with your employer

If you don't know how your employer reimburses the cost of public transportation, it is a good idea to agree on this in advance in your contract.

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