Over seven in 10 freelancers are not in favour of the government’s plans to introduce compulsory disability insurance which will pay them the minimum wage if they become unable to work.
If the government does decide to press ahead with the idea, almost all will make use of the option to apply for an exemption, according to research by self-employed organisation VZN.
Social affairs minister Karien van Gennip said in April she would introduce compulsory insurance for the country’s 1.2 million freelancers, or ZZP’ers, from 2027.
The VZN has some 200,000 members and 9,000 took part in the survey. Some 22% of respondents already had some form of cover if they become unable to work and having cover is more common among those earning over €35,000 a year.
The cost is one of the main objections to the plan. The government scheme is likely to require premiums of around 8% of income and the insurance would not kick in until after a year. The payment itself would be maximized at minimum wage level, or just below €2,000 a month pre tax.
Freelance translator and DJ Natasha Cloutier told Dutch News that the premiums are likely to be too high for many, and the payout not enough.
‘Many of us are going to try and find a way to opt-out but that also means being covered elsewhere, not undermining the system,’ she said.
‘Disability insurance is very important, but needs to be fair. And many employees have next to nothing saved for their pension, but are not being targeted. Freelancers are an easy target.’
The cabinet is expected to publish more details about the proposal next year.
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