Corona virus: the position of the employer (9) – the Employment Bridging Emergency Fund (NOW) 2.0

20/05 2020

This is update no. 9 on the coronavirus. Information is provided below on the extension and amendment of the Employment Bridging Emergency Fund (Dutch: NOW). On 20 May, Minister Koolmees (Social Affairs and Employment (SZW)) announced an NOW 2.0. Those measures follow the first emergency fund (17 March 2020).

NOW 2.0

An important condition when applying for subsidy for (maximum 90%) of the wage costs is that the turnover must have dropped by 20% compared with one quarter of the 2019 turnover. This time, the drop in turnover is determined over a three-month period commencing on 1 June, 1 July or 1 August, whereby in the case of applicants that rely on the NOW for the second time the turnover period must immediately follow the period chosen under NOW 1.0. Also, a number of changes are made in NOW 2.0 compared with NOW 1.0:

  • Applications for subsidy may be filed by employers who filed an application in the first period as well as by employers who wish to file a first application in this second period.
  • The government intends to allow the new applications as from 6 July 2020.
  • The months for which a contribution to the wage costs may be applied for are June, July and August 2020.
  • The reference month for the wage sum will be changed from January to March of this year.
  • Companies that make use of the NOW scheme may not pay the management and the board of directors any dividend or bonuses this year or next year and may not purchase shares in the company’s capital in 2020.
  • A best efforts obligation is included for employers to stimulate their employees to take extra training or to be retrained. They may do so, for instance, by making time (released or other) available and by providing funds.
  • The amount of the correction of the wage sum as a result of redundancy for economic reasons has been changed. In the settlement, the subsidy for redundancy applications for economic reasons is no longer corrected for 150% but only for 100% on the basis on the wage sum of the employees for whom redundancy applications have been filed. This applies to redundancy applications filed between 1 June and 31 August 2020. The added 50% “penalty” will therefore disappear.

More information on the details and a further explanation of NOW 1.0 can be found in our earlier NOW updates on our website:

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.


Kind regards,

Arlette Putker-Blees & Irene Francken-van der Ven
tel: +31 (0)20 7608811
mob: +31 (6)13 14 48 50
tel: + 31 (0)20 7608814
mob: + 31 (0)6 31000115

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