Firms also responsible for freelancers’ safety: High court

Companies which hire freelance staff are also responsible for their safety, the high court ruled on Monday, in a decision which has wide implications for the growing freelance sector.

The case was brought by a man who lost his lower leg after an accident at a company where he had been doing odd jobs as a freelancer (zzp’er). The claim, which has taken seven years to reach the high court, was rejected by lower courts which said the man was not employed by the company and it was therefore not responsible.
‘This will have major implications for thousands of freelancers,’ labour law professor Evert Verhulp told the Volkskrant. The Netherlands has some 800,000 official freelancers.