Working in the Netherlands

Working in the Netherlands



A parcel deliverer (applicant) of PostNL argued that he is not an independent contractor but have an employment contract.  PostNL opposed the claim.


The Court found that the applicant did not have an employment contract with PostNL.

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Reasons for finding:

  • The applicant was for 6 weeks on probation (trial period). In this time the applicant had enough time to consider an employment offer by PostNL. The applicant decided that the salary offer was too low and continued as an independent contractor.  The court also took into account that the applicant decided to buy his own delivery vehicle.

Good to know

  • An independent contractor is a natural person, business, or corporation that provides goods or services to another entity under terms specified in a contract or within a verbal agreement.
  • A true independent contractor:
  1. will be a registered taxpayer,
  2. will work his own hours,
  3. runs his own business,
  4. will be free to carry out work for more than one employer at the same time,
  5. will invoice the employer each month for his/her services and be paid accordingly.


Rechtbank Midden-Nederland

Case: 4635163 AE VERZ 15-164AL/1116

Finding: 06-01-2016

Tags: Dutch Labour Lawindependent contractor, employment contract

PostNL makes an offer to all independent parcel deliverers

13 July 2015

The Hague, 13 July 2015 – PostNL will be making all independent parcel deliverers an offer today to enter the company’s employ or as an entrepreneur to earn more than at this moment. PostNL expects a financial impact from these measures between 15 to 20 million euros annually.

The offer has been discussed with the FNV trade union over the past period. These talks led to a negotiation result which FNV presented to the independent parcel deliverers last Sunday in three meetings. The independent parcel deliverers present at the meetings voted in favour of the offer in two meetings and against in a third meeting. On balance, the offer was not accepted by those present. Attendance was limited. PostNL believes that the negotiation result represents a good offer. In the coming time, PostNL will be discussing the matter with the independent parcel deliverers.

Yme Pasma: ‘By making this offer, PostNL is taking an important step towards a social and competitive delivery model. The offer is also groundbreaking in the parcels market. And it creates clarity for all our parcel deliverers.’

The most important part of the offer is that the independent parcel deliverer who has a full transport agreement with PostNL Parcels can choose between:

  1. Signing an employment contract with PostNL. This employment contract will: – not have a trial period – be for an indefinite period of time – be in conformity with all employment terms and conditions of the PostNL CLA.
  2. Remaining an independent parcel deliverer, while the remuneration will be increased by about 10%.

As a result of this offer there will be no difference in costs between independent parcel deliverers and PostNL employees.

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Andre Beukes LLM

Andre Beukes LLM

André Beukes is an EU Management Consultant to international companies doing business in Europe. He provides clients with practical business support that makes a real difference doing business in the EU. “Put simply, I am here to help you meet your challenges. I believe in the importance of doing things correctly, meaning risks are reduced and problems are avoided.”

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