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Dismissal via UWV

Under current legislation, an employer no longer has a choice of whether to turn to the UWV or the subdistrict court when terminating an employee’s employment contract. The dismissal route is laid down by law under the Work and Security Act. When terminating an employment contract for economic reasons or long-term disability, the employer must apply for dismissal through UWV.

Requesting dismissal via UWV

An employer wishing to terminate an employment contract may first ask an employee to voluntarily agree to the dismissal. If both parties fail to reach an agreement, an employer can initiate proceedings for dismissal through UWV. Dissolution of a contract via UWV applies in the following two situations:

  • Dismissal due to business economic reasons;
  • Dismissal due to long-term occupational disability.

Is one of these causes cause for dismissal? If so, the employer must apply to the UWV for permission to dismiss an employee. The UWV will grant a dismissal permit for this purpose.

Dismissal for economic reasons is possible if:

  • A company is in financial dire straits
  • When work and employment are reduced
  • Due to organisational or technological changes, such as automation
  • Due to (partial) company closure
  • As a result of company relocation
  • Following the expiry of a wage subsidy

Dismissal application long-term disability is possible in case of:

  • Due to illness or disability, the employee can no longer perform work;
  • The employee’s recovery takes longer than 26 weeks to return to work;
  • The employee cannot perform work in modified form within 26 weeks;
  • Reassignment or another job for the employee is not possible within 26 weeks;
  • The statutory obligation to continue to pay wages during illness has expired.

Application for dismissal permit

The moment employer and employee do not reach an agreement together to terminate the employment contract, the employer can request dismissal through UWV. The employer asks the UWV for permission to dissolve the contract. In the application for the dismissal permit, the employer must substantiate the reasons for the dismissal. Has a dismissal committee been set up within the company’s CLA or the relevant industry? In case of dismissal for business economic reasons, the employer does not apply for dismissal not to the UWV, but to the special dismissal committee.

Dismissal without a dismissal permit

In specific situations, a dismissal permit is not necessary to terminate an employment contract. In the cases below, an employer does not need permission for dismissal from the UWV:

  • The employee has reached the state pension age, the employment contract ends automatically;
  • Bankruptcy is the reason for dismissal;
  • The employee is still on probation;
  • The employee is summarily dismissed.

Is an employment contract terminated without a dismissal permit even though this permit is required? According to the law, the dismissal in this situation is not legally valid. The employee can challenge and overturn the dismissal through the subdistrict court. If the court finds in favour of the employee, the employment contract remains in force.

How does the dismissal procedure via UWV work?

Once the dismissal request has been submitted in full to the UWV, the application is processed. The processing period usually takes around six weeks, except in situations where an additional hearing is necessary. The UWV dismissal decision is sent by post to the employer and employee. The parties cannot object to the decision at the UWV, but can go to the subdistrict court.

Permission for summary dismissal

The UWV may decide not to grant permission for an employer’s request for dismissal. In the event of refusal of dismissal through UWV, the employer can turn to the subdistrict court to challenge this decision and request the court to dissolve the employment contract. This request must be submitted within two months of the UWV’s decision. The subdistrict court assesses the request using similar criteria as the UWV.

Employee does not agree to dismissal

An employee may disagree with the dismissal. To appeal against the dismissal through UWV, the employee can ask the subdistrict court to reinstate the employment contract within two months of the termination of the employment contract. The employee can also request the subdistrict court to oblige the employer to pay severance compensation. We call this fair compensation.

Dismissal by mutual agreement

An employee can also decide to cooperate in a dismissal. If an employer wants to dismiss an employee and the employee decides to agree, this is known as dismissal by mutual consent or termination by consent. A dismissal by mutual consent avoids the UWV dismissal procedure or going to the subdistrict court. With consensual dismissal, the employee can retain his right to WW benefits.

In the case of dismissal by mutual consent, the statutory transitional compensation is no longer obligatory for the employer, but the employee can make consent to the dismissal a condition. Does an employee become culpably unemployed, for example by summary dismissal for an urgent reason? Then the employee may not receive WW benefits.

Requesting collective dismissal from UWV

Sometimes a company is forced to dismiss several employees simultaneously or within a short period of time. When 20 or more employees are dismissed within three months for economic reasons and they work within one working area, it is called collective dismissal. Dismissals for economic reasons are subject to legal rules that employers must comply with. These are contained in the Collective Redundancy (Notification) Act (Wmco).

Targeted advice on employer and dismissal

Is your company in financial difficulties or has an employee been ill for more than two years? And is dismissal a concrete option for you? The specialists in employment and dismissal law at Fruytier Lawyers in Business can provide you with targeted advice on the various procedures, with the protection of your company’s rights always having priority. Our lawyers can also support you in correctly terminating the employment contract and applying for dismissal through UWV. For more information or no-obligation advice on an employer and dismissal, please contact Fruytier Lawyers in Business.

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