work permit

A work permit is valid in all EU member states

Recently the European Court of Justice gave an important judgment regarding the assignment of non EU-workers within the EU.

In its judgment, the Court ruled that the Ministry of Social Affairs wrongly imposed a fine on a Netherlands-based company, which did not apply for a work permit for workers from non-EU countries who are working and residing legally in another EU Member State.

Dutch requirement for a work permit

The Court stated that the Dutch requirement for a work permit hinders the European principle of free movement of labour. Besides, this judgment shows no work permit is required in the case of temporary work. For the latter, the activities in the Netherlands must be temporary and the service provider must carry out its main activities in the Member State of establishment. Notification of the work performance at the Unemployment Authorities (UWV) is sufficient. Fines previously imposed in these situations can be recovered.

The Dutch government however believes that this judgment contradicts the principle of equal pay for equal work, because this has as an effect that cheap employees from outside the EU are able to perform work in the Netherlands. The Minister of Social Affairs and Employment has announced to examine the possibilities to adapt the European and national rules in this regard.